Post Office Regulations to Ship a Firearm

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The United States Postal Service has strict regulations regarding the shipping of firearms. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms can review guns to determine their mailability. Postmasters are not allowed to advise patrons in regards to shipping guns.

Concealable Handguns

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No concealable handguns, such as pistols, revolvers, short-barreled shotguns or starter guns, may be mailed unless both parties (sending and receiving) meet the handgun exception regulation. Disassembled handguns may not be shipped through the USPS.

Handgun Exception

Licensed (FFL) manufacturers, dealers or government agents may ship a handgun to an officer in the United States military or National Guard for use within their official job duties. An Affidavit of Addressee must accompany the package.

Affidavit of Addressee

An affidavit proving the handgun will be used only in an official job capacity must be completed by the receiving person and submitted to the postmaster at the time of mailing. A signature from the receiver's commanding officer is mandatory.


Licensed manufacturers and dealers may ship handguns between themselves for the purpose of repair or trade shipments.

Antique Guns

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Unloaded museum pieces may be shipped without needing to meet handgun regulations. Antique firearms are weapons manufactured in or before 1898.

Long-Barreled Guns

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Unloaded rifles and shotguns with an overall length of more than 26 inches may be shipped in accordance with the Gun Control Act of 1968. Check state and local laws for possible additional regulations.