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 Gifting and serial numbers? 
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Location: Renton
Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2022
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My question might be answered somewhere in this forum, but I have not found it.

In gifting a pistol to an immediate family member lawfully permitted to own a firearm, how do you transfer the serial number from your name to the giftee? There used to be a form titled "Private Disposition/Transfer" that you could voluntarily submit to DOL so you could remove your name attached to the serial number to a buyer in a private sale. This form was dropped in 2015 by DOL. They published a letter stating the form was no longer valid as background checks were now required in all sales/transfers with some exceptions as subscribed in RCW 9.41.113.

If I gift a pistol to my son-in-law, how do I communicate to DOL that I no longer own that gun? Of course, I could send them a letter stating that, but will they accept it and record it? Is there a DOL form for gifting that includes serial number transfer? I sent an e-mail to DOL asking that question to which they replied and said they could not give legal advice. I wasn't asking for legal advice; I was asking which form do I use to transfer the serial number so that it is recorded by DOL.

RCW 9.41.113 Firearm sales or transfers--Background checks--Requirements--Exceptions: section (4) (a) states background checks do not apply to transfers between immediate family members. Background checks and transfers are conducted by licensed dealers but a gift to a family member does not require an FFL dealer transfer as stated in (4). A dealer transfer clearly includes the firearm serial number. There is no further statement in paragraph (4) or subparagraphs (a) through (j) that require or provide for the serial number to be transferred from me to my son-in-law.

Has anyone on the forum gifted a "pistol firearm" to a family member and managed to get the serial number transferred?


Last edited by Scarpia on Fri Mar 29, 2024 7:53 am, edited 2 times in total.



Fri Mar 29, 2024 7:42 am
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Why get gov't involved in YOUR business? If you're worried about misuse, don't gift it.

At most get him to sign a receipt that is kept in YOUR records only

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Fri Mar 29, 2024 7:45 am
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jukk0u wrote:
Why get gov't involved in YOUR business? If you're worried about misuse, don't gift it.

At most get him to sign a receipt that is kept in YOUR records only

Yeah, that's the best approach. I've used the "Private Disposition/Transfer" form in the past but now it is no longer posted on DOL web site. If I keep a signed receipt, it probably could not stand up in a court proceeding. I'm not concerned about son-in-law doing bad things with "my" gun but what about the possibility of its being stolen and used in a crime?


Fri Mar 29, 2024 8:05 am
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I understand worrying about all the what if's. It just seems like, in your case, if the what ifs are gonna bother you, why not just do a FFL transfer.


Fri Mar 29, 2024 8:29 am
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I recognize that we aren’t actually answering the question, but I’m with the guys above.

For me personally, at most I would do a handwritten bill of sale and call it good.

Remember, Washington does not have a registry requirement, so there is no need to have the gun “registered” under the current owner’s name.

(Haha, no registry, yeah I know….)

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Fri Mar 29, 2024 8:42 am
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This question just came up when I bought a new gun and told my son-in-law that I just got him another gun, our standard family joke. That is, when I kick off, he and my daughter will be the custodians of my estate. RCW 9.41.113 section (4) (h) (i) and (ii) has provisions for disposal of a deceased gun owner's firearms. The DOL says that a "custodian provided by law" has 60 days to dispose of the gun(s) lawfully to a lawfully entitled buyer after which the custodian must tell DOL that the custodian opts to retain possession of the gun(s). My entire point here is there appears to be a hole in the RCW's regulations that does not provide a means of transferring a serial number in gifting a gun to a family member. There was a document that DOL provided for that purpose but has since been declared obsolete and deleted from their web site.

NOTE: That form (Private Disposition/Transfer) clearly states: "This form may be voluntarily submitted by the seller or transferor to report the sale, transfer of ownership, loss, or other disposition of a pistol or revolver (RCW9.41)"

My options are as stated by other posters: (1) just forget about it. (2) dish out the bucks to a FFL to make a transfer. (3) gift the gun(s) then send a letter to DOL stating that a firearm(s) with s/n xxx was gifted to an immediate family member as provided in RCW 9.41.114 (4). I'm leaning towards (3).

BTW: I'm in the waiting period for a Tisas 1911 Carry B45BA pistola. It will be number 56 in my collection.


Last edited by Scarpia on Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:28 am, edited 1 time in total.



Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:11 am
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Perhaps call DOL Firearm Department at 360-664-6616


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Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:20 am
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When I gifted both my son in laws Glock 19's and AR-15's, as well as my daughter, I just handed them to them and that was that.

Perfectly legal, I'm not telling the State shit as there is no requirement.

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Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:22 am
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Please stop volunteering yourself for further state regulation and taxation of your private property and constitutionally protected rights.

Apparently the State and anti-gunners have you conditioned to feel compelled to comport to their controlist made-up regulations. There is no need to do so, especially if it concerns your estate. You'll be dead. It will no longer matter to you and you will have only saddled your daughter and son in law with a tax and paperwork obligations and increased the State's facility for seizure should they decide to go full tyranny and enact confiscation.

I would gift every firearm on paper (in your PERSONAL records, and nowhere else) to them before your passing and clam up about it. Freedom isn't always comfortable and slavery even worse.(Yes, it's that serious)

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"The said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms." ~ Samuel Adams

“A return to First Principles in a Republic is sometimes caused by simple virtues of a single man. His good example has such an influence that the good men strive to imitate him, and the wicked are ashamed to lead a life so contrary to his example. Before all else, be armed!” ~ Niccolo Machiavelli

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Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:26 am
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usrifle wrote:
When I gifted both my son in laws Glock 19's and AR-15's, as well as my daughter, I just handed them to them and that was that.

Perfectly legal, I'm not telling the State shit as there is no requirement.


I've already done that. I gave him a NOS, unfired 38spl revolver that was a left-over from my FFL days. I followed up by submitting the Private Disposition/Transfer form to DOL. If that gun is ever used in a crime because it was stolen and recovered by the police, they will know I don't own it. That's much cheaper than hiring a lawyer.


Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:52 am
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