FAQ: Privately made firearms (PMF)

Written by Jarad on March 20, 2023

This help article is not meant to represent the entire ruling. These are the answers to the most frequently asked questions. To see the final ruling you can visit the ATF’s website or download the ATF’s Overview.

Definition of a Privately Made Firearm:

A PMF is defined as “[a] firearm, including a frame or receiver, completed, assembled, or otherwise produced by a person other than a licensed manufacturer, and without a serial number placed by a licensed manufacturer at the time the firearm was produced. The term shall not include a firearm identified and registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record pursuant to chapter 53, title 26, United States Code, or any firearm manufactured or made before October 22, 1968 (unless remanufactured after that date).”

The final rule:

  • Does not prohibit an individual from making their own PMF.

  • Does not mandate unlicensed persons mark their own PMF.

  • Does not require an FFL to accept unmarked PMFs into their inventory.

  • Does not apply to firearms marked and registered pursuant to the NFA, 26 U.S.C. 5842 and 27 CFR 479.102, upon approval of an ATF Form 1 .

  • Does not apply to firearms manufactured or made before the effective date of the Gun Control Act of 1968, October 22, 1968, unless remanufactured after that date.

Required Markings on PMFs:

  • Licensees who take a PMF into inventory are required to mark it with an individual serial number that begins with the licensee’s abbreviated Federal firearms license number, which is the first three and last five digits, as a prefix to a unique identification number, followed by a hyphen, e.g., “12345678-[unique identification number]” in accordance with 478.92(a)(2). The markings must be completed no later than seven days upon receipt, or before the date of disposition, whichever is sooner.

  • Licensees are not required to mark PMFs received for same day adjustment or repair and returned to the person from whom it was received.

Recordkeeping and Marking Exception (A&D Records):

  • As with all firearms, except in cases where a PMF is received by a FFL for adjustment or repair and returned to the person from whom received on the same day, licensees must record the acquisition of a PMF by the close of the next business day following receipt of the firearm.

  • If a PMF is unmarked upon receipt by a licensee, the licensee may leave the serial number portion of the A&D record blank until the PMF is properly marked. However, the PMF must be marked within seven (7) days of receipt (or prior to disposition, whichever comes first) and once marked, the A&D record must be updated.

  • In FastBound you will need to enter “None Marked” for the serial number.

    • After the item is marked with a compliant serial number, you can edit the item and update the serial number.

  • The final rule amends A&D recordkeeping requirements to require licensees to record “privately made firearm” or “PMF” in the absence of a manufacturer’s name in the “Description of firearm” section (formerly licensed manufacturer and/or licensed importer name).