Dunblane. Santana. Virginia Tech. Sandy Hook. Columbine. Do these words sound familiar to you? If not, here’s a clue: Aside from being quirky place names, a common thread runs through them that is just disheartening.

Let’s add a few more: 2016 Orlando nightclub, 2015 Bataclan theater in Paris, 2015 Charlie Hebdo magazine office. Do these ring a bell?

Well, all these are places where incidents of mass shootings have occurred. Not only that, these incidents of gun violence may be easily recalled from memory because they caused a high number of deaths and have been in the news at the time of their occurrence.

Public outcry has been persistent over the past decades in urging governments to do something and ensure that events like these do not happen. And among the most common step that governments do to prevent gun violence is by creating a nationwide gun registry and requiring gun owners to file Gun Registration Forms.

This article will show different gun registration forms used by different countries and institutions all over the world and also provide information on how to fill out gun registration forms.

New Firearm Registration Form

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Firearm License Re-Registration Application Form

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What Is Gun Registration?

Gun registration is the act of listing all gun owners in a specific area or country. This method is primarily a record-keeping endeavor; and when it is used by countries and governments, it acts as a database of all gun owners within that country.

Gun registration is not only applicable to civilians. Military, security, other government security support personnel are also required to have their weapons listed in a government-backed national registry or through a military-sponsored weapons database.

In order to streamline a gun registration process, owners are tasked to fill out gun registration forms. These are documents that will ask for the gun owner’s personal information and his/her gun details like make, model, and where it was bought.

A gun registration process may also include taking the owner’s photo, fingerprints, and other biometric markers. However, it will largely depend on the government body on what specific steps they want to set up while ensuring that the process is still efficient and protects their citizen’s personal information. Gun registration is also required when changing the owner/s of a gun like when a person sells his/her gun/s to another person. In this case, a gun owner transfer form will need to be filled out.

Sample Firearm Registration Form

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Firearm Ownership Record Form

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Firearms Registration Certificate Application Form

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Purpose of Gun Registration

Despite its detractors in some countries, gun registration policies still have taken root all over the world since most people and their governments are more concerned on the positive benefits of gun registration. Listed below are a few reasons why its essential to create gun registration policies.

To weed out and stop the use of unlicensed firearms. Most gun registration drives are aimed towards decreasing the use and ownership of unlicensed firearms. Reports show that most perpetrators of mass shootings have obtained their weapons illegally either through the use of unsuspecting middlemen or by directly buying unlicensed guns.

For instance, the perpetrators of the Columbine High School shooting were able to buy guns through two different middlemen (who were also subsequently convicted for their indirect role in the shooting) and create improvised explosives from their own homes.

Prevent firearms from getting into the wrong hands. In connection with the previous entry, gun regulation prevents the proliferation of hand-held weapons to high-risk individuals. High-risk individuals include those who have a history of substance and alcohol abuse, mental health issues, and convicted felons, etc. Countries like the United States have instituted stringent background checks before individuals can purchase a gun.

Even though these background checks are not applicable to all kinds of gun sales, it can still be a deterrent for some dangerous individuals. Being asked for a background check when buying a gun is as simple as filling out security clearance forms.

Decrease gun violence. In the United States alone, an average of 12,000 deaths occur each year as a result of gun use. Of these deaths, children and women are more likely to be affected. Gun registration may not be a cure-all solution to all human woes but it surely is a step towards preventing wrongful deaths.

To make gun owners more accountable and responsible. Registering firearms is a way of making owners feel more accountable since their personal information can be linked to the use of their gun/s. Gun registration processes often include a responsible firearm use course. Some institutions may forgo using the training course set up and instead will just print informational handouts. Either way, a gun registration process will somehow help gun owners in re-framing their outlook towards responsible gun use.

To help in law enforcement. By having a nationwide gun registry, law enforcement officers can use the database in tracing weapon ownership and gun sales transactions. This makes it easier in identifying the owner of a weapon found or used in a crime.

Counterarguments to Gun Registration

The United States is one of the countries that have the highest incidence of mass shootings in the developed world and some proponents say that this can be attributed to lax gun laws. However, any matter concerning the curtailment of a person’s right to possessions will always have its critics and objectors. These are some of the objector’s remonstrations against gun registration:

  • A lack of crime prevention elements. One of the counter-arguments to gun registration is its inherent lack of a felony prevention aspect. Despite the known components on FBI background checks that each gun registration process includes, some pro-rights activists deem that this is not enough.

  • The belief that gun registration will bring about gun seizure laws. Pro-rights proponents believe that instituting gun registration now will ultimately lead to laws that will call for confiscation of weapons in the future.

  • It infringes on the Right to Bear Arms. The Right to Bear Arms is part of the United States Constitution’s Bill of Rights. The pro-rights side uses this as a counter-argument against gun registration laws.

Shortcomings of Gun Registration Laws

Not all laws are created equal. The gun registration laws in the United States, for instance, exempts the sale of guns through private sellers from conducting background checks. This means that unlicensed sellers may still sell weapons and firearms to high-risk individuals.

Some states allow individuals with a background check exemption permits to buy guns without having to undergo a background check. This loophole in the law has been amended on some states by instituting an expiration date for these permits.

Personal Firearms And Weapons Registration Form

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Individual Firearm Registration Form

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Non-Resident Firearm Registration Form

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Business Firearm Registration Form

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Non-Resident Firearm Certificate Registration Application Form

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How to Fill Out and Register Your Firearms

  • If you are looking to buy a new gun, you should do so from a licensed seller. These sellers will register your gun/s during the purchase process after a thorough background check is conducted.
  • Gun registration forms will need to be filled out before the sale transaction is completed.
  • If you are buying a gun from another person who has previously registered the firearm, you will need to fill out a gun transfer form in addition to other purchase forms needed for the purchase to go through.
  • If you have been given or have somehow acquired an unregistered gun, you may still register it at the local law enforcement offices in your area.
  • Registration forms will often vary per state and per country, so make sure that you are filling out the correct form.
  • During a gun registration process, you may still need to go to a government office who will take your photograph and obtain other biometric data (like fingerprints).
  • Some states will also release gun license cards that individuals could use to prove their capacity to carry guns.
  • Other states and countries may also require additional permits before gun owners can use concealed weapons.
  • Also remember that if your registered firearm is stolen, misplaced, or lost, you should report this to the proper authorities. This ensures that you are no longer linked to any incident that may occur with the use of the stolen gun.
  • For those traveling to other countries, you will also need to declare your firearms at borders and airports by filling out a new gun registration form in the new country.
  • To familiarize yourself with the different information that may be required when filling out a gun registration form, you may browse through the various sample forms embedded in this article.

Is Gun Registration the Way?

Gun ownership is not for everyone. The anti-gun and pro-choice sides both have sufficient causes as to why one should or should not own a gun. Somehow, all these debates just stem out from the need to be safe and to feel safe.

The talk about gun registration and the corresponding gun registration forms needed to complete the process may have only come to light with the news of multiple mass shooting incidents all over the globe. We all want to prevent another Columbine High School, Sandy Hook, or Orlando night club shooting to happen and there are different ways to do that.

Gun registration is one way, another is by instituting anti-bullying practices in schools, increasing mental health support mechanisms in schools and the community, or even curtailing drug and alcohol addiction. What is clear is that in order to prevent gun violence, a more holistic approach is needed.

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