Importing and Exporting Firearms, Weapons and Devices
Memorandum D19-13-2

Ottawa, November 3, 2016

ISSN 2369-2391

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In Brief

1. This memorandum replaces Memorandum D19-13-2 dated January 23, 2013. The following changes were made:

  • (a) The Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development has been updated to reflect the departmental name change to Global Affairs Canada;
  • (b) The elimination of the Possession Only Licence (POL) and conversion of all existing POLs to Possession and Acquisition Licences (PAL);
  • (c) The Authorization to Transport (ATT) will become a condition of a firearms licence for certain situations, notably, transportation of restricted firearms and /or prohibited firearms to a port of entry/exit, for the purpose of importation and exportation;
  • (d) There has been clarification on airsoft classifications;
  • (e) The section on firearms business licence requirements for commercial imports was updated;
  • (f) The section on import permit requirements for prohibited firearms was updated;
  • (g) There are updates to the explosives import requirements to reflect the changes to the Explosives Regulations, 2013;
  • (h) There are amendments to legislative references;
  • (i) CBSA procedural references have been removed;
  • (j) The Non-resident Firearms Declaration form number has been amended from CAFC 909 to RCMP 5589; and
  • (k) The definition of an automatic knifehas been up-dated for clarification purposes.

This memorandum outlines how tariff item 9898.00.00 of the Customs Tariff, the Criminal Code, the Firearms Act, and the Export and Import Permits Act relate to the importing and exporting of firearms, firearm parts, weapons, devices, and certain types of ammunition.

The Government of Canada is committed to effective firearms and weapons control that targets criminals and at the same time maintains the highest standards of public safety. Firearms and weapons are high-risk commodities that can impact the safety, security and welfare of Canadians. It is the policy of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to control the flow of firearms, weapons and other devices, in order to ensure compliance by all stakeholders with existing laws, regulations and orders and seek to interdict the illegal and unjustified crossing of firearms and weapons across the border; while also streamlining the process for low-risk and law-abiding persons travelling with legitimate purposes and with the required documentation.


Legislation

Guidelines and General Information

Definitions

1. Use the following definitions when applying this memorandum:

Action
Assembly of component parts that carries out the necessary cycle of operation in small arms. Actions are categorized as: air, spring or gas, bolt action, converted automatic, full automatic, lever action, multi-barrel, pump action, revolver, semi-automatic and single shot. The term “Action” is sometimes misused to mean an assembled receiver/frame, without an assembled barrel. The term is also misused as “Barrelled Action” which has evolved into a term describing the metal parts remaining when the wood furniture (stock fore-end and butt) are removed from the firearm.
Ammunition
A loaded cartridge, consisting of a primed cartridge case, propellant and may or may not contain one or more projectiles, designed to be discharged from a firearm, including a caseless cartridge and a shot shell.
Authorization To Carry (ATC)
An authorization that allows an individual to keep restricted firearms, or certain grandfathered handguns, on his or her person for lawful occupational purposes, or to protect life.
Authorization To Transport (ATT)
An authorization that allows an individual to transport restricted or prohibited firearms from one place to another, such as from a home to a target range or gun show and back.
Automatic firearm
A firearm that is capable of, or assembled or designed and manufactured with the capability of, discharging projectiles in rapid succession during one pressure of the trigger.
Barrel
That portion of a firearm through which a projectile or shot charge travels under the impetus of powder gases, compressed air or like means. A barrel may be either smooth or rifled.
Barrel length
The distance from the muzzle of the barrel to and including the chamber. This excludes accessories or barrel extensions such as flash suppressors or muzzle brakes. In the case of a revolver, the distance from the muzzle of the barrel to the breech end immediately in front of the cylinder. (see Appendix A)
Barrelled action
A shotgun or rifle without the stock. The term “barrelled action” has evolved into a term describing the metal parts remaining when the wood furniture (stock fore-end and butt) are removed from the firearm.
Black powder
A finely ground mixture of three basic ingredients saltpetre (potassium nitrate), charcoal (carbon) and sulphur principally used in muzzle-loaders and antique cartridge firearms.
Bolt/breech bolt
The locking and cartridge head support mechanism of a firearm that operates in line with the axis of the bore.
Bore
the inside of the barrel of a firearm, from the throat to the muzzle, through which the projectile travels.
Breech
The rear end of the barrel into which the ammunition is loaded.
Bull-pup
A stock that, when combined with a firearm, reduces the overall length of the firearm, such that a substantial part of the reloading action or the magazine-well is located behind the trigger of the firearm when it is held in the normal firing position.
Business
A person who carries on a business that includes the manufacture, assembly, possession, purchase, sale, importation, exportation, display, repair, restoration, maintenance, storage, alteration, pawn broking, transportation, shipping, distribution, or delivery of firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices, or prohibited ammunition; the possession, purchase, or sale of ammunition; or the purchase of crossbows. A museum is considered a business.
Calibre
  • (a) ammunition: a numerical term, without the decimal point, included in a cartridge name to indicate the approximate bullet diameter
  • (b) firearms: the approximate diameter of the circle of the barrel of a firearm. In the case of a rifled barrel, the calibre is the approximate diameter of the circle formed by the tops of the lands.
Carbine
A rifle of short length that is light in weight.
Carrier
A person who carries on a transportation business that includes the transportation of one or more of the following classes of goods: non-restricted firearms, restricted firearms, prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices, ammunition or prohibited ammunition.
Carrier licence
A licence that allows a carrier to possess and transport one or more of the following classes of goods: non-restricted firearms, restricted firearms, prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices, ammunition or prohibited ammunition.
Cartridge
A complete unit of ammunition, consisting of a case, primer and propellant charge, with or without projectile(s). The term also applies to a shotshell.
Centre-fire cartridge
Any cartridge that has its primer central in the head of the case.
Chamber
The rear part of the barrel bore that has been formed to accept a specific cartridge. A revolver cylinder is multi-chambered.
Chief Firearms Officer (CFO)
Means the following:
  • (a) in respect of a province, the individual who is designated in writing as the chief firearms officer for the province by the provincial minister of that province;
  • (b) in respect of a territory, the individual who is designated in writing as the chief firearms officer for the territory by the federal Minister; or
  • (c) in respect of any matter for which there is no chief firearms officer under paragraph (a) or (b), the individual who is designated in writing as the chief firearms officer for the matter by the federal Minister.
Cylinder
The cylindrical and rotatable component of a revolver in which chambers are bored to hold cartridges. It combines the functions of magazine, feed system and firing chamber.
Energy
Sometimes called “Projectile Energy”, it is the ability or capacity of a projectile to do work by virtue of its motion, commonly expressed in joules or foot-pounds. Energy is also referred as the ballistic measurement that takes into consideration both the mass and velocity of a projectile and is related to the potential to cause injury or damage.
Export
Export from Canada and includes exporting goods from Canada that are imported into Canada and shipped in transit through Canada.
Export permit
A permit issued by Global Affairs Canada under the Export and Import Permits Act that allows the export of those goods or classes of goods described on the permit.
Federal Minister
Minister of Public Safety.
Firearm
A barrelled weapon from which any shot, bullet, or other projectile can be discharged and that is capable of causing serious bodily injury or death to a person, and includes any frame or receiver of such a barrelled weapon and anything that can be adapted for use as a firearm.
Firearms Business Licence
A licence that allows a business to deal with certain goods. The licence must specify each particular activity that is authorized in relation to firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices, ammunition or prohibited ammunition.
Firearms Reference Table (FRT)
An electronic database developed by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to assist law enforcement officers in the accurate identification of firearms. It establishes a standard method of describing firearms to assist in the goal of determining the legal classification (non-restricted, restricted, prohibited) of a firearm. The FRT also provides descriptions and photos of most existing firearms.
Firing pin
The part of a firing mechanism that strikes the primer of the cartridge to initiate ignition of the propellant charge.
Flintlock firearm
A firearm, usually muzzle loading, discharged when a flint is struck to create sparks that ignite the priming powder.
Former resident
A member of the Canadian Forces, an employee of the Canadian government, or a former resident of Canada returning to Canada to resume residence in Canada after having been a resident of another country for a period of not less than one year, or a resident returning after an absence from Canada of not less than one year.
Frame
See “Receiver”.
Full automatic firearm
See “Automatic firearm”.
Grandfathering
A legal exception that allows an old rule to continue to apply to some existing situations and/or when the rule will apply instead in all future situations. It describes a legislative provision that assigns special status based on property or other interests that exist at the time a legal change takes effect. In the context of section 12 of the Firearms Act, both the firearm and the individual must be specifically grandfathered. To be and remain grandfathered for a particular category of prohibited firearm, the owner must continuously hold both a valid firearms licence and a valid registration certificate for that prohibited firearm within that category.
Handgun
A firearm that is designed, altered, or intended to be aimed and fired by the action of one hand, whether or not it has been redesigned or subsequently altered to be aimed and fired with both hands.
Import
Import into Canada and includes importing goods into Canada that are shipped in transit through Canada and exported from Canada.
Import permit
A permit issued by Global Affairs Canada under the Export and Import Permits Act that allows the import of those goods or classes of goods described on the permit.
In transit
The movement of goods from a point outside of Canada, through Canada, to another point outside of Canada. This movement must be by the most direct route available. Vacationing or touring Canada is not possible when moving goods in transit.
International Import Certificate (IIC)
A certificate issued under the Export and Import Permits Act to facilitate importation of goods into Canada and compliance with the laws of the country of export.
Note: An IIC is not the same as an import permit.
Licence
A licence issued under the Firearms Act.
Matchlock firearm
A firearm, usually muzzle loading, discharged when a slow burning match is brought to ignite the priming powder.
Military goods
Goods listed in tariff item 9898.00.00 (h), (i) and (j). They generally include goods specifically designed or subsequently modified for military use, such as large calibre armaments, high explosive engines or any other war machine.
Minor
A person who is less than 18 years old.
Minor’s Possession Licence
A licence that allows a minor to possess non restricted firearms. Minors are not allowed to possess restricted or prohibited firearms.
Museum
A person who operates a museum in which non-restricted firearms, restricted firearms, prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons, prohibited devices or prohibited ammunition are possessed, bought, displayed, repaired, restored, maintained, stored or altered; or a museum in which ammunition is possessed or bought. A museum is considered a business.
Muzzle
The end of a barrel from which the projectile emerges.
Muzzle brake
A device attached to the muzzle that softens the recoil of the firearm.
Muzzle loader
A firearm that is loaded with gunpowder and projectile through the muzzle end of the bore.
Muzzle velocity
The speed, measured in meters per second (mps) or feet per second (fps), at which the projectile leaves the muzzle of a firearm.
Non-resident
For determining the admissibility requirements of firearms and weapons, a non-resident is an individual who ordinarily resides outside Canada. Visitors, seasonal residents, temporary residents, settlers, and former residents are non-residents.
Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL)
A licence that allows an individual to possess and acquire the class or classes of firearm indicated on the licence.
Possession Only Licence (POL)
Effective September 2, 2015 the POL has been eliminated and all existing POLs are converted to a Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL). Importers in possession of a valid POL, for the class of firearm being imported, may import newly acquired non-restricted and restricted firearms. A new PAL will be issued upon renewal of the firearms licence.
Primer
The priming compound, cup and anvil which, when struck, ignites the powder charge.
Prohibited device
Please refer to the Regulations Prescribing Certain Firearms and Other Weapons, Components and Parts of Weapons, Accessories, Cartridge Magazines, Ammunition and Projectiles as Prohibited, Restricted or Non-restricted.
Provincial Minister
  • (a) in respect of a province, the member of the executive council of the province who is designated by the lieutenant governor in council of the province as the provincial minister;
  • (b) in respect of a territory, the federal minister; or,
  • (c) in respect of any matter for which there is no provincial minister under (a) or (b), the federal minister.
Public agent
An individual who is either:
  • (a) any of the following persons in the course of their duties or for the purposes of their employment:
    • (i) peace officers;
    • (ii) persons training to become police officers or peace officers under the control and supervision of a police force or a police academy or similar institution designated by the federal Minister or the lieutenant governor in council of a province;
    • (iii) persons or members of a class of persons employed in the public service of Canada or by the government of a province or municipality who are prescribed by the regulations made by the Governor in Council under Part III of the Criminal Code to be public officers; and
    • (iv) chief firearms officers and firearms officers.
  • (b) an individual acting on behalf of, and under the authority of, a police force or a department of the Government of Canada or of a province.
Public officer
An individual who is:
  • (a) a peace officer;
  • (b) a member of the Canadian Forces or of the armed forces of another country who is attached or seconded to any of the Canadian forces;
  • (c) an operator of a museum established by the Chief of the Defence Staff or a person employed in any such museum;
  • (d) a member of a cadet organization under the control and supervision of the Canadian Forces;
  • (e) a person training to become a police officer or a peace officer under the control and supervision of:
    • (i) a police force; or
    • (ii) a police academy or similar institution designated by the Attorney General of Canada or the lieutenant governor in council of a province.
  • (f) a member of a visiting force, within the meaning of section 2 of the Visiting Forces Act, who is authorized under paragraph 14(a) of that Act to possess and carry explosives, ammunition and firearms;
  • (g) the Commissioner of Firearms, the Registrar, a chief firearms officer, any firearms officer and any person designated under section 100 of the Firearms Act; or
  • (h) a member of any of the following classes of persons, if employed in the public service of Canada or by the government of a province or municipality:
    • (i) employees who are responsible for the examination, inventory, storage, maintenance, or transportation of court exhibits and evidence;
    • (ii) employees of police forces or other public service agencies who are responsible for the acquisition, examination, inventory, storage, maintenance, issuance or transportation of firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices, prohibited ammunition, or explosive substances;
    • (iii) technicians, laboratory analysts, and scientists who work at forensic or research laboratories;
    • (iv) armourers and firearms instructors who work at police academies or similar institutions designated under subparagraph 117.07(2)(e)(ii) of the Criminal Code, or are employed by a federal or provincial department of natural resources, fisheries, wildlife, conservation or the environment, or by the Canada Border Services Agency;
    • (v) park wardens and other employees of a federal or provincial department who are responsible for enforcing laws and regulations dealing with natural resources, fisheries, wildlife, conservation or the environment;
    • (vi) immigration officers;
    • (vii) security personnel employed by the Security Service of the House of Commons or by the Senate Protective Service within the Parliamentary Precinct; or
    • (viii) aircraft pilots employed by the Department of Transport or other public service agencies.
Public service agency
A police force, a department or agency of the public service of Canada or of a province or municipality, a police academy or other public agency that employs or has under its authority public agents.
Receiver/frame
The basic component of a firearm to which all other components are attached. For example, in most firearm designs the barrel is attached to the receiver and the receiver houses the trigger, breech and firing mechanisms.
Registration certificate
A certificate issued under the Firearms Act as proof of registration of a firearm. A copy of this document may be examined.
Regulation
A law made by a body that has been granted (delegated) law-making authority. It is used both to indicate a specific type of delegated legislation, as well as to refer generically to all forms of delegated legislation.
Reproduction
The modern manufacture of any firearm that has ceased to have patent protection and is usually no longer manufactured by the original maker. Normally, the reproduction is equal to or better in quality of material and workmanship than the original and in some cases may be an exact duplicate with interchangeable parts and components.
Resident
For determining the admissibility requirements of firearms and weapons, a resident is an individual who ordinarily resides in Canada.
Revolver
A firearm, usually a handgun, with a cylinder having several chambers so arranged as to rotate around an axis and be discharged successively by the same firing mechanism.
Rifle
A firearm, usually a long arm designed to be fired from the shoulder, normally with rifling inside the bore.
Rim
The edge on the base of a cartridge (i.e., ammunition) case. The rim is the part of the case that the extractor grips to remove the cartridge from the chamber.
Rimfire cartridge
Any cartridge that has its primer located inside the annular rim of the cartridge case.
Secure locking device
A device that can only be opened or released by the use of an electronic, magnetic or mechanical key or by setting the device in accordance with an alphabetical or numerical combination; and that, when applied to a firearm, prevents the firearm from being discharged.
Semi-automatic firearm
A repeating firearm requiring a separate pressure of the trigger for each shot fired, that is equipped with a mechanism that, following the discharge of a cartridge, automatically operates to complete any part of the reloading cycle necessary to prepare for the discharge of the next cartridge. It is sometimes referred to as auto-loading or self-loading.
Settler
Means any person who enters Canada with the intention of establishing, for the first time, a residence for a period of not less than 12 months, but does not include a person who enters Canada for the purpose of:
  • (a) employment for a period not exceeding 36 months;
  • (b) studying at an educational institution; or
  • (c) performing pre-clearance activities on behalf of the Government of the United States.
Shotgun
A firearm, usually a long arm designed to be fired from the shoulder, normally having a smooth bore. Shotgun ammunition may contain numerous projectiles or a single projectile.
Small arms cartridge
Means a cartridge that is designed to be used in small arms, has a calibre of no more than 19.1 mm (.75 calibre), is fitted with centre or rim fire priming and contains a propelling charge, with or without a solid projectile. It includes a shotgun shell of any gauge.
Smokeless powder
Any propellant generally based on nitrocellulose. This includes propellants with a single-base (nitrocellulose alone), those with a double-base (such as NC/NG) and those with a triple-base (such as NC/NG/nitroguanidine). Cast, pressed or made-up charges of smokeless powders are propelling charges.
Temporary resident
Means:
  • (a) a person who is not a resident of Canada and who resides temporarily in Canada for the purpose of:
    • (i) studying at an educational institution;
    • (ii) employment for a period not exceeding 36 months; or
    • (iii) performing preclearance activities on behalf of the Government of the United States.
  • (b) the spouse or any dependants of a person described in subparagraph (a)(i) or (ii); and
  • (c) the spouse or any dependant of a person described in subparagraph (a)(iii), if the spouse or dependant produces on arrival in Canada a valid card or employment authorization issued by the Government of Canada certifying the spouse or dependant to be the spouse or dependant of a person described in subparagraph (a)(iii).
Trigger
The part of the firearm mechanism that is moved manually to cause the firearm to discharge.
Unattended vehicle
Means that the vehicle is not under the direct and immediate supervision of a person who is 18 years of age or older and to whom a licence has been issued under the Firearms Act.
Unloaded
A firearm containing no ammunition, i.e., one in which any propellant powder, projectile or cartridge that is capable of being discharged from the firearm is not contained in the breech or firing-chamber nor in a cartridge magazine attached to or inserted into the firearm.
Visiting force
Any of the armed forces of a designated state present in Canada in connection with official duties, and includes civilian personnel designated under section 4 of the Visiting Forces Act as a civilian component of a visiting force.
Weapon
Any thing used, designed to be used or intended for use in causing death or injury to any person, or to threaten or intimidate any person. Firearms are considered weapons, but not all weapons are firearms.
Wheel-lock firearm
A firearm, usually muzzle loading, discharged when a revolving spring-loaded steel wheel strikes a piece of iron pyrite, or flint, causing sparks that ignite the priming powder.

Identification and Classification

2. Except as otherwise stated in this memorandum, all goods will be examined and classified in the condition found or at the time of importation/exportation.

Firearms

3. For CBSA purposes only, all firearms are deemed to be one of two types: “uncontrolled” or “controlled”.

“Uncontrolled” firearms

4. “Uncontrolled” firearms are those devices that, although falling within the definition of a firearm in the Criminal Code, are exempt from specific legal requirements of the Firearms Act and its regulations, as well as from other legislative provisions. “Uncontrolled” firearms do not fall under tariff item No. 9898.00.00, and are generally admissible into Canada. “Uncontrolled” firearms should not be subdivided into any of the non-restricted, restricted, or prohibited classes. The following types of firearms are deemed “uncontrolled”:

“Controlled” firearms

5. “Controlled” firearms are strictly those firearms that are controlled for the purposes of certain provisions of the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act. All “controlled” firearms belong to one of three categories: 1) non-restricted, 2) restricted, or 3) prohibited. Each one of the categories has different admissibility requirements.

6. When identifying what category a firearm belongs to, the Firearms Reference Table (FRT) will be used as a reference tool.

Prohibited Firearms

7. Prohibited firearms include most automatic, military firearms, and short-barrelled handguns. Prohibited firearms are:

Restricted Firearms

8. Restricted firearms are:

Non-restricted Firearms

9. Non-restricted firearms are all “controlled” firearms that are neither classified as prohibited nor restricted firearms. Generally, they include most hunting rifles and shotguns that have not been modified to the extent that they would become prohibited or restricted firearms.

Deactivated Firearms

10. A deactivated firearm is a device that was originally manufactured as a firearm, but has since been rendered inoperable by the removal of parts, and by the addition of pins and welds, so that the firearm can no longer chamber or fire ammunition. However, some deactivated firearms may still contain functional parts (e.g., functional bolt, barrel). If so, such parts in themselves will be regulated as per the Criminal Code and the Customs Tariff.

11. A deactivated firearm is not subject to the registration provisions of the Firearms Act. However, a firearm that has been deactivated outside of Canada will be deemed a “controlled” firearm and will therefore require all the appropriate documentation for importation for that class of firearm until the Registrar of Firearms confirms the deactivation.

12. A deactivated firearm is never a replica firearm.

13. A “disabled firearm,” where the firing or some other mechanism is altered so that the firearm cannot discharge ammunition, is still legally considered a firearm and thus, all rules and regulations pertaining to active firearms (i.e., licensing and registration) will be applicable.

Firearm Parts

14. There are four types of firearms parts:

Weapons

Prohibited weapons

15. In order for a good to be classified as a prohibited weapon, it must fall within the Criminal Code definition of “prohibited weapon”. Only those weapons may be classified under TI 9898.00.00.

16. Not all weapons are necessarily prohibited. Any weapon that is not specifically prohibited by law will generally be admissible. If a weapon does not meet one or more of the definitions contained in the list of prohibited weapons, please consult the “Other weapons” section below.

17. The definition of prohibited weapon has two components: 1) “Paragraph (a)” weapons, being automatic, centrifugal, or gravity knives; and 2) “Paragraph (b)” weapons, being those laid out explicitly in the Criminal Code subsection 84(1) Regulations, Part 3. Section 84(1) of the Criminal Code states that a prohibited weapon is:

“Paragraph (a)” weapons

18. Weapons that fall under paragraph (a) include the following:

“Paragraph (b)” weapons

19. The following weapons are prescribed under paragraph (b) (i.e., Criminal Code, subsection 84(1)(b)) to be prohibited as per Part 3 of the Regulations Prescribing Certain Firearms and Other Weapons, Components and Parts of Weapons, Accessories, Cartridge Magazines, Ammunition and Projectiles as Prohibited, Restricted or Non-restricted.

Device with incapacitating gas

20. This category includes any device designed for the purpose of injuring, immobilizing or otherwise incapacitating any person by the discharge of:

Nunchaku sticks (a.k.a. Liang Ji Gun/Ee Cheol Bong/Nisetsuken)

21. Any instrument or device commonly known as “nunchaku” being hard non flexible sticks, clubs, pipes, or rods linked by a length or lengths of rope, cord, wire or chain, and any similar instrument or device. The definition of “nunchaku” also includes Sanjiegun (or Three-Section- Staff) or any other similar device. On the other hand, “training nunchakus” (these are nunchakus that are light, flexible and covered in foam or any other soft material or fabric) are not considered prohibited weapons.

Shuriken/Shaken (Throwing Stars)

22. Any instrument or device commonly known as “shuriken”, being a hard non flexible plate having three or more radiating points with one or more sharp edges in the shape of a polygon, trefoil, cross, star, diamond or other geometrical shape, and any similar instrument or device.

Manrikigusari/Kusari (Fighting Chain)

23. These are defined as any instrument or device commonly known as “manrikigusari” or “kusari”, being hexagonal or other geometrically shaped hard weights or hand grips linked by a length or lengths of rope, cord, wire or chain, and any similar instrument or device.

Bladed finger ring

24. Any finger ring that has one or more blades or sharp protrusions and that are capable of being projected from the surface of the ring.

Device with incapacitating electric charge shorter than 480 mm

25. This category includes any device that is designed to be capable of injuring, immobilizing or incapacitating a person or an animal by discharging an electrical charge produced by means of the amplification or accumulation of the electrical current generated by a battery, where the device is designed or altered so that the electrical charge may be discharged when the device is of a length of less than 480 mm, and any similar device. Examples of these are stun guns or other types of electric-shock devices.

Cross-bows

26. A cross-bow is a device with a bow and a bowstring mounted on a stock that is designed to propel an arrow, bolt, quarrel, or any similar projectile on a trajectory guided by a barrel or groove and that is capable of causing serious bodily injury or death to a person. The following types of cross-bows are considered to be prohibited weapons:

“Constant Companion” (Belt buckle knife)

27. The device known as the “Constant Companion”, being a belt containing a blade capable of being withdrawn from the belt, with the buckle of the belt forming a handle for the blade, and any similar device.

Push-dagger

28. Any knife commonly known as a “push dagger” that is designed in such a fashion that the handle is placed perpendicular to the main cutting edge of the blade (or blades) and any other similar device other than the aboriginal “ulu” knife. “Kit Rae Fang of Baelin” knives are considered push-daggers.

Device shorter than 30 cm with concealed knife blade (e.g., knife comb)

29. Any device having a length of less than 30 cm and resembling an innocuous object but designed to conceal a knife or blade, including, but not limited to, the device commonly known as the “knife comb”, being a comb with the handle of the comb forming a handle for the knife, and any similar device. An innocuous object, for the purposes of TI 9898.00.00, is defined as an item that a reasonable person would usually perceive to be harmless, and thus would be surprised to find a weapon or sharp blade concealed within it. In addition to the “knife-comb”, other examples of weapons concealed in innocuous objects include penknives, lipstick knives and certain types of necklace knives. Knives contained in credit card-sized cases clearly resembling real credit cards and designed as weapons will also be considered prohibited weapons.

30. The following generally do not meet the definition of a prohibited weapon, and thus do not fall under TI 9898.00.00 (therefore admissible). The misuse of these weapons may nonetheless be punishable under other laws:

Spiked wristband

31. A spiked wristband is a wristband to which a spike or blade is affixed, and any similar device. There are a number of variations on spiked wristbands. In order for a wristband to fall under the prohibited weapon definition, it must first be established that the wristband is in fact a weapon.

32. Wristbands made out of sturdy or thick leather with a buckle or snap attachment and sharp spikes protruding from the band are considered prohibited weapons.

33. The following goods generally do not meet the definition of a prohibited weapon, and thus do not fall under TI 9898.00.00. Their misuse may nonetheless be punishable under other laws:

Blowgun (Yaqua Blowgun)

34. The device commonly known as “Yaqua Blowgun”, being a tube or pipe designed for the purpose of shooting arrows or darts by the breath, and any similar device. Blowguns are hollow tubes typically made of wood or plastic with an opening at each end. Darts or arrows are placed in one end, and forced out the other end using the force of the operator’s breath. The darts used may be made of metal, plastic or wood, and can occasionally be made with poison tips.

Kiyoga Baton/Steel Cobra

35. The device commonly known as a “Kiyoga Baton” or “Steel Cobra” and any similar device consisting of a manually triggered telescoping spring loaded steel whip terminated in a heavy calibre striking tip.

36. There are two main types of prohibited telescoping/ expandable batons: spring batons and spring-loaded rigid batons.

37. A spring baton consists of a solid handle, one or more coiled spring body sections, and a solid striking tip or ball at the end furthest from the handle. It is flexible at one or more points and is extended by centrifugal force.

38. A spring-loaded rigid baton consists of a solid handle, one or more solid body sections, and a solid striking tip or ball at the end furthest from the handle. This type of baton has a button or other trigger that releases a spring, which in turn extends the baton automatically. The baton is rigid when extended.

Exception: The following goods generally do not meet the definition of prohibited weapon, and thus do not fall under tariff item 9898.00.00. Their misuse may nonetheless be punishable under other laws:

Morning Star

39. The device commonly known as a “Morning Star” and any similar device consisting of one or more balls of metal or other heavy material studded with spikes and connected to a handle by a length of chain, rope or other flexible material.

Brass knuckles

40. The device known as brass knuckles and any similar device consisting of a band of metal with one or more finger holes designed to fit over the fingers of the hand. Generally, the outer edges of the brass knuckle will be undulated in order to deliver the kinetic force of a punch through a smaller and harder contact area. Brass knuckles can be made of any type of metal. Typically, but not exclusively, brass knuckles are made with four finger holes, though there are many variations. An example of such a variation would be “half knuckles”, that is, a band of metal with only two finger holes.

41. Brass knuckles can be combined with other weapons such as knives. These ‘brass knuckles knives’ consist of two parts: a knife blade, and brass knuckles integrated into the handle. The blade part does not generally possess characteristics that would make it fall under the definition of prohibited weapon. Rather, it is the brass knuckles handle that will usually determine the knife’s classification as a prohibited weapon. In order for the knife to be prohibited, the brass knuckles part of the knife must meet the definition of “brass knuckles” in the regulations. Therefore, to classify a ‘brass knuckles knife’ as prohibited:

Exception: The following goods generally do not meet the definition of prohibited weapon, and thus do not fall under tariff item 9898.00.00. Their misuse may nonetheless be punishable under other laws:

Restricted weapons

42. A restricted weapon is any weapon, other than a firearm, that is prescribed to be a restricted weapon. Currently, there are no regulations prescribing restricted weapons.

Prohibited devices

General

43. A prohibited device is:

Replica firearms

44. “Replica firearm” is defined as any device that is designed or intended to exactly resemble, or to resemble with near precision, a firearm, and that itself is not a firearm, but does not include any such device that is designed or intended to exactly resemble, or to resemble with near precision, an antique firearm.

45. For a device to be a replica firearm it must meet all three requirements:

46. In addition, there are other material considerations that must be considered when examining a device suspected of being a replica firearm. Amongst them:

47. The following are additional inferences that could be made to suggest a device to be considered a replica firearm. They are not in themselves necessary considerations for a replica firearm determination:

48. The following are examples of devices that may be considered replica firearms (however, each device must always be assessed on a case-by-case basis and taking into account all the above-mentioned criteria):

49. Except for replica frames and receivers, most parts intended for replica firearms will generally be admissible, subject to other customs requirements such as payment of duties and taxes.

Magazines

50. A magazine is a device or container from which ammunition may be fed into the firing chamber of a firearm. This can be an internal or external component of the firearm. For CBSA purposes, any box, body or case of a disassembled magazine will be deemed a magazine, even if at the time of examination it does not contain a follower or spring.

51. Section 84(1) of the Criminal Code states that certain cartridge magazines prescribed by regulations are considered prohibited devices. For a detailed list of prescribed and overcapacity magazines, see Part 4, Section 3, subsection (1) of the Regulations Prescribing Certain Firearms and Other Weapons, Components and Parts of Weapons, Accessories, Cartridge Magazines, Ammunition and Projectiles as Prohibited, Restricted or Non-restricted.

52. Cartridge magazines are limited to five rounds for centre-fire automatic or semi-automatic rifles or shotguns and ten rounds for semi-automatic handguns with certain exemptions for rare and valuable magazines.

Alteration or modification of a magazine

53. A prescribed cartridge magazine that has been altered or re-manufactured so that it is not capable of containing more than five or ten cartridges, as the case may be, of the type for which it was originally designed is not a prohibited device as prescribed by that provision if the modification to the magazine cannot be easily removed and the magazine cannot be easily further altered so that it is capable of containing more than five or ten cartridges, as the case may be.

54. For the purposes of the above, altering or re-manufacturing a cartridge magazine includes:

55. This is not necessarily an all-exhaustive list and therefore not the only acceptable methods of converting magazines to five or fewer shots capacity for rifles/shotguns or ten or less for handguns.

Insertion of a rivet

56. The permanent installation of a rivet (which is considered to be sufficiently permanent if it requires a tool to remove) through the casing of the magazine to prevent the magazine platform from moving past the rivet, and therefore not permitting the insertion of more than five/ten cartridges into the magazine is considered an acceptable form of modification. If properly tooled and/or modified in a workmanlike manner, the insertion of a “pop” rivet can be an acceptable way of limiting an otherwise overcapacity magazine. A proper rivet is similar to a “pin” to satisfy the requirements of Part 4, Section 5 of the Regulations Prescribing Certain Firearms and Other Weapons, Components and Parts of Weapons, Accessories, Cartridge Magazines, Ammunition and Projectiles as Prohibited, Restricted or Non-restricted concerning the limits of magazine size, and therefore will be accepted for CBSA purposes.

57. In order for the rivet to be acceptable, it should generally:

58. All additions or modifications to the magazine must be completed prior to its importation into Canada.

Ammunition

General

59. The following information regarding ammunition has been compiled for ease of reference. Please refer to Memorandum D19-6-1, Administration of the Explosives Act.

60. Ammunition means a cartridge containing a projectile designed to be discharged from a firearm and, without restricting the generality of the foregoing, includes a caseless cartridge and a shot shell. The importation of certain types of ammunition is prohibited (see “Prohibited Ammunition” below).

61. Restrictions on the importation of hollow point handgun ammunition no longer apply. Hollow point ammunition for all types of firearms is now admissible.

Prohibited ammunition

62. Prohibited ammunition refers to any ammunition, round, cartridge, or projectile of any kind, that is prescribed to be prohibited in the Regulations Prescribing Certain Firearms and Other Weapons, Components and Parts of Weapons, Accessories, Cartridge Magazines, Ammunition and Projectiles as Prohibited, Restricted or Non-restricted. Currently, there are four types of prohibited ammunition:

63. Any other projectile for ammunition that does not meet the prohibition criteria of paragraphs (b) and (c) above does not require an import permit.

Note: Other provisions of the Explosives Act may regulate any other type of ammunition not listed above. Please refer to Memorandum D19-6-1.

Other military goods

64. Other military goods include both goods specifically designed or subsequently modified for military use, such as large calibre armaments, grenade and rocket launchers, high explosive engines or any other war machine. Military goods are listed in the “Import Control List” and the “Export Control List” under the Export and Import Permits Act.

Import and Export Procedures

Importation

65. Please note that the importation of both non-restricted and restricted firearms is currently exempt from the import permit requirements under the Export and Import Permits Act.

66. In order to bring a firearm into Canada, the foreign country from where the firearm is being exported may require an International Import Certificate (IIC) from Global Affairs Canada. An IIC is an end-use document that formally recognizes that the Government of Canada is aware of, and has no immediate objections to, the proposed import of specific goods to Canada by the stated importer, for the stated end-use and end-user. The IIC is issued to Canadian applicants, who in turn provide a copy to their foreign supplier(s), who use the IIC to obtain a foreign export permit.

67. Both residents and non-residents must be at least 18 years old to import any firearm. Holders of a minor’s licence cannot import firearms by themselves.

68. All importations must conform to the safe transportation requirements, please see the section on transportation below for more information.

69. Licences, permits and authorizations, must be in their original form. Reproductions and/or photocopies of these documents will not be accepted. The only exception is in the case of registration certificates, where a copy is acceptable.

70. Please note that foreign “concealed carry authorization and/or permits” do not permit their holders to carry concealed firearms or weapons into or through Canada.

71. Appendix B contains a simplified table of import document requirements for all types of importers included below.

Importation of firearms

72. Note: Effective September 2, 2015 the following changes took effect:

Non-restricted firearms

Personal importations by residents re-importation of firearms

73. Residents may re-import non-restricted firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they present a valid Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) or Possession Only Licence (POL) authorizing possession of that class of firearm.

Note: A BSF407 Identification of Articles for Temporary Exportation form listing the firearm is recommended to show that it has not been purchased outside of Canada.

Importation of newly acquired firearms

74. Residents may import newly acquired non-restricted firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they present a valid Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) or Possession Only Licence (POL) authorizing the possession of a non-restricted firearm.

75. Those residents who arrive in Canada without a Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) or Possession Only Licence (POL) who are attempting to import a newly acquired firearm do not have the option of having the firearm held by CBSA. No 40 day holding period will be granted. The importer may choose to abandon the goods to the Crown, or to export the firearm.

76. It is not necessary for Canadian residents to demonstrate a valid purpose in order to import a non-restricted firearm.

Personal importations by settlers, temporary or former residents

77. Settlers, temporary or former residents may import non-restricted firearms as part of their effects if they present a valid Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) or Possession Only Licence (POL) authorizing possession of that class of firearm.

78. If the settler, temporary or former resident does not have a licence for the non-restricted firearm, he/she may:

Personal importations by non-residents

79. Unlike Canadian residents, non-residents importing non-restricted firearms will always need to have a valid purpose for importing. Valid purposes can include:

80. A border services officer must be satisfied that the circumstances warrant the firearm being imported. Non-residents who are proceeding to a Canadian national park should be advised that many national parks do not allow firearms. In addition, non-residents under 18 years of age are not permitted to transfer their firearm to an adult to ensure its importation. Please note that only non-restricted firearms can be used for hunting purposes and protection against wildlife in remote areas. Use of firearms for personal protection, or protection of property is not deemed a valid purpose to import firearms into Canada.

Licensed non-residents

81. Non-residents may import non-restricted firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they:

Non-resident without a Canadian firearms licence

82. If the non-resident does not have a licence, he or she must:

83. Once confirmed, the NRFD acts as a temporary licence for the non-resident for the firearm(s) listed.

Note: The confirmation fee is valid for 60 days from the date of payment and covers all firearms on the declaration. On any subsequent importation within the 60 day period of the same non-restricted firearm(s), the border services officer will match the firearm(s) to the original NRFD, but no additional fee is payable.

Commercial and other types of importations

84. Businesses may import non-restricted firearms if they have a valid firearms business licence. The licence describes the activities the business may conduct regarding non-restricted firearms (e.g., importation, sale, display, storage). A business might also need a carrier licence if it is engaged in the transportation of firearms and the firearms business licence does not specify transportation of non-restricted firearms (see “Transportation” section).

85. Businesses not carrying on a business in Canada may ship non-restricted firearms in transit through Canada. In this case, no firearms business licence is required.

Note: Public officers acting in the course of their duties, and individuals acting on behalf of and under the authority of a domestic police force, the Canadian Forces, a visiting force, or of a federal or provincial government department may import non-restricted firearms, or move them in transit through Canada. Firearms licences, authorizations, permits or registration certificates are not required (see “Other Modalities for Importing Firearms”).

86. Firearms business licences are only issued to businesses that carry on business, and have a place of business, in Canada. The importer of record must have a firearms business licence, in the name of the business, which outlines their permitted activities. Non-resident businesses cannot import regulated goods and cannot provide the firearms business licence of the Consignee to import regulated goods into Canada.

Restricted Firearms

Personal importations by residents

87. Re-import of firearms – Residents may re-import restricted firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they present:

88. If the resident does not present all of the documents listed above they have the option of exporting or abandoning the firearm, or of having it held by the CBSA. The CBSA may hold the firearm for 40 days on a BSF241, Non-monetary General Receipt while the resident satisfies the outstanding documentation requirements.

Note: A BSF407 Identification of Articles for Temporary Exportation form listing the firearm is not sufficient documentation for re-importation.

Importation of newly acquired firearms

89. Residents may import newly acquired restricted firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they present:

90. If the resident does not have a registration certificate for the restricted firearm he/she wishes to import, he/she has the option of exporting or abandoning the firearm, or of having it held by the CBSA. The CBSA may hold the firearm for 40 days on a BSF241, Non-monetary General Receipt while the resident satisfies the outstanding documentation requirements. The resident should be advised to complete an application to register newly imported firearms (RCMP 5624, available on the CFP Web site) in order to receive a registration certificate. The resident may contact the CFP at 1-800-731-4000 for additional information. Residents must make bona fide efforts to obtain the missing documentation as quickly as possible. Storage charges may apply in such circumstances.

91. If, after a reasonable delay, the resident has not presented the required registration and any other applicable documentation, the port is authorized to dispose of the firearm(s) by approved means.

92. Those residents who arrive in Canada without a Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) or Possession Only Licence (POL) who are attempting to import a newly acquired firearm do not have the option of having the firearm held by CBSA. No 40 day holding period will be granted. The importer may choose to abandon the goods to the Crown, or to export the firearm.

93. It is not necessary for Canadian residents to demonstrate a valid purpose in order to import a restricted firearm.

94. Form B15, Casual Goods Accounting Document must show the PAL number and provide a complete description of the firearm, including make, model, and serial number.

Personal importations by settlers, temporary or former residents

95. Settlers, temporary or former residents may import restricted firearms as part of their effects if they present:

96. If the settler, temporary or former resident does not have a licence and a registration certificate for the restricted firearm(s), they may:

97. If the settler, former or temporary resident arrives outside of business hours (i.e., 9-5 Monday to Friday), the settler, former or temporary resident is to be advised to complete the NRFD and pay the confirmation fee. The CBSA may then hold the firearm for 40 days on a BSF241 form while the settler, former or temporary resident obtains an ATT. The settler, former or temporary resident may contact the CFP at 1-800-731-4000 for additional information. Settlers, former or temporary residents must make bona fide efforts to obtain the ATT as quickly as possible. Storage and transportation charges may apply in such circumstances.

98. Once the ATT has been obtained the firearm(s) may be shipped to the settler, former or temporary resident by using the most secure means of transmission by post that is offered by Canada Post that includes the requirement to obtain a signature on delivery, with the white copy of the confirmed NRFD and a copy of the ATT. If, after a reasonable delay, the settler, former resident or temporary resident has not presented a valid ATT, the port is authorized to dispose the firearm(s) by approved means.

Personal importations by non-residents

Licensed non-residents

99. Non-residents may import restricted firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they have:

100. If the non-resident does not have all of the documentation listed above for the restricted firearm(s) they wish to import, they must:

Commercial and other types of importations

101. The same requirements as for non-restricted firearms also apply to the importation of restricted firearms by businesses and other types of importers (Government, military, police, etc.). Border services officer will ensure that, in the case of commercial importations, the firearms business licence indicates the business in question is allowed to import restricted firearms.

Prohibited firearms

Personal importations by residents / Re-importation of firearms

102. Residents may re-import prohibited firearms into Canada or may move them in transit through Canada if they:

103. If the resident does not meet all the requirements listed above he/she has the option of exporting or abandoning the firearm, or of having it held by the CBSA. The CBSA may hold the firearm for 40 days on a BSF241, Non-monetary General Receipt form while the resident satisfies the outstanding documentation requirements. Storage and transportation charges may apply.

Note: A BSF407 Identification of Articles for Temporary Exportation form, listing the firearm, is not sufficient documentation for re-importation.

Importation of newly acquired firearms

104. Residents may not import newly acquired prohibited firearms into Canada or move them in transit through Canada.

Personal importations by non-residents

105. Non-residents may not import prohibited firearms. This includes movements in transit through Canada.

Personal importations by settlers and temporary residents

106. Settlers and temporary residents may not import prohibited firearms as part of their effects.

Personal importations by former residents

107. Former residents may import prohibited firearms as part of their effects if they:

108. If the former resident does not meet all the requirements listed above they have the option of exporting or abandoning the firearm to the CBSA.

Commercial and other types of importations

109. The same requirements as for restricted and non-restricted firearms also apply to the importation of prohibited firearms by businesses and other types of importers (Government, military, police, etc.). However, border services officers will ensure that, in the case of commercial importations, the firearms business licence indicates the business in question is allowed to import prohibited firearms.

110. The importation of prohibited firearms is also controlled by the Export and Import Permits Act. An import permit will thus be required for such goods. If a prohibited firearm is declared, but falls within TI 9898.00.00 because the correct authorizations, licences, or permits are not available, then the prohibited firearms are prohibited from entering Canada. More information on the import permit requirements for prohibited firearms may be obtained by contacting Global Affairs Canada.

“Uncontrolled” and deactivated firearms (including antique firearms)

“Uncontrolled” firearms

111. Residents, non-residents, businesses and public officers may all import “uncontrolled” firearms. No firearms licences, authorizations, permits or registration certificates are required. In the case of antique firearms, they must comply with safe transportation, handling and transportation requirements.

Deactivated firearms

112. In the case of a firearm that has been deactivated outside Canada, that firearm will be treated as an “active firearm” (one that is not deactivated) until it is in Canada and the Registrar of Firearms confirms the deactivation status. Thus, to import such a firearm, the importer will need a valid licence allowing the importer to import that class of firearm and he/she will need a registration certificate for the firearm, and in the case of a prohibited firearm, an import permit. Once the Registrar of Firearms has confirmed that the firearm modification meets Canadian deactivation standards, the firearm may be de-registered.

Firearm parts

113. For the importation of frames or receivers, the requirements are the same as for the importation of the firearm for which the frame/receiver was designed (see definitions of firearm and receiver). Border services officers will also ensure that the firearm parts are not prohibited devices in themselves (see “Prohibited Devices”).

114. The importation of parts for prohibited firearms is controlled by the Export and Import Permits Act. An import permit will thus be required for such goods. If a component or part is declared, but still falls within TI 9898.00.00 because the correct authorizations, licences, or permits are not available, then the parts are prohibited from entering Canada. More information on the import permit requirements for prohibited firearms parts may be obtained by contacting Global Affairs Canada.

Personal importations by residents and former residents

115. Residents may re-import components or parts designed exclusively for use in the manufacture of or assembly into automatic firearms and may import such parts newly acquired outside of Canada, as long the person presents:

Personal importations by non-residents, settlers or temporary residents

116. Non-residents, settlers or temporary residents may not import components or parts designed exclusively for use in the manufacture of or assembly into automatic firearms.

Commercial and other types of importations

117. Businesses may import components or parts designed exclusively for use in the manufacture of or assembly into automatic firearms, as long they present:

Other Modalities for Importing Firearms

CANPASS

118. Under the terms and conditions of the CANPASS Private Boats and Private and Corporate Aircraft programs, authorization holders may import non-restricted firearms provided they are declared in advance to the CBSA and meet all import and documentation requirements as per above. Restricted and prohibited firearms cannot be imported under the terms and conditions of any CANPASS program.

Foreign law enforcement officers

119. Section 97 of the Firearms Act provides the Governor in Council and, to a more limited extent, a federal Minister the power to exempt non-residents from the application of any of the provisions of the Firearms Act or regulations, or certain provisions of the Criminal Code (including the import requirements under the Customs Act, the Firearms Act, etc.).

120. Canadian law enforcement agencies may designate or appoint foreign law enforcement officers on official duty as supernumerary or special constables of their force for the duration of their stay in Canada. This is common when foreign law enforcement officers come to Canada for training purposes, tactical or shooting competitions, or joint force operations. When this status is provided to a foreign law enforcement officer, the officer takes on the role of a peace officer for the Canadian agency.

121. The law enforcement agency must contact an authorizing Canadian agent for supernumerary or special constables to request this status for foreign law enforcement officers. Please refer to Appendix C for authorizing Canadian agents for each province or territory.

122. Upon arrival at a CBSA port, the officer must produce a duly authorized letter or certificate from the Canadian law enforcement agency indicating:

123. The letter or certificate permits the foreign enforcement officer to enter Canada with the service firearm only for the time specified on the documentation.

124. Canadian law enforcement agencies will not grant this status to foreign enforcement officers coming to Canada for parades or ceremonies.

Note: U.S. bail enforcement agents or fugitive recovery agents (also known as “bounty hunters”) are not considered law enforcement officers and cannot undertake their activities here; as such an institution does not exist in Canada.

Foreign officials escorting visiting dignitaries

125. Under very special circumstances, the Commissioner of the RCMP may issue a Certificate of Appointment to named visiting foreign dignitaries and accompanying security officers, appointing them as supernumerary special constables for a specified period. This appointment grants them the power to act as peace officers in Canada, while under the supervision of the RCMP. This appointment provides them with consent to carry their firearm while in active performance of their duties, and the following requirements must be met:

126. In those instances where no such designation is applicable, the RCMP will arrange to meet the entourage and take possession of the firearms and/or weapons where prior notification has been received concerning the visit. Where no notification has been received by the RCMP, the CBSA will follow regular procedures for handling non-restricted, restricted or prohibited firearms and/or weapons imported by non-residents.

Canadian law enforcement officers

127. In the case of Canadian law enforcement officers (such as police officers) importing firearms, the firearm in question may be imported only when it is being acquired during the function of that person’s duties or employment. The officer must have a letter of authorization from the chief of the agency in question stating that the firearm(s) is being transported directly to the agency involved. If the officer does not possess the necessary documentation proving their status as public officer and the letter of authorization, they must be processed as an individual resident importing firearm(s).

128. Firearms that are being shipped to a law enforcement agency may be released only to an authorized member of that agency, the importer in question, or a licensed carrier. The following requirements must be met before CBSA can release the goods:

Canadian Forces

129. The Firearms Act does not apply to the Canadian Forces. In order to import firearms and weapons, the Canadian Forces must obtain import permits from Global Affairs Canada if they are importing on behalf of another country.

130. The following conditions must be met before the goods are released by the CBSA:

131. In the case of Canadian Forces personnel importing firearms or weapons on their own, the importation must be for official military business and the person in question must present proper travel orders and a letter of authorization from his or her DND Commanding Officer. The goods must be transported directly to a Canadian Forces premises.

132. Military personnel of the Canadian Forces returning from overseas missions are not allowed to bring in unlawfully acquired firearms, weapons, or any other similar device for personal purposes, such as war trophies, personal memorabilia, field souvenirs, etc.

Visiting forces

133. A member of a visiting armed force must be travelling on official military business with travel orders and have authorized identification and written authorization to transport from his or her commanding officer stating that the firearm or weapon will be transported directly to the base of the visiting forces member. Persons who cannot substantiate their status as a visiting force must be treated as non-residents and, if they are in possession of a non-restricted or restricted firearm, they will be required to possess all the appropriate documentation (NRFD, licensing, registration, ATT, etc.). Without the latter, the firearm(s) will be detained.

Special rules regulating the importation of firearms by museums

134. Museums, like businesses, may import firearms, weapons and other goods regulated under the Firearms Act of the class(es) listed on their business licence.

135. Museums that import firearms, weapons and other regulated goods must present:

136. A shipment of firearms and goods that is regulated under the Firearms Act and imported by or on behalf of a museum may only be released by CBSA to an authorized employee of the museum or to a licensed carrier.

137. The authorized employee must present to CBSA the letter signed by the director of the museum identifying the person as an employee of that particular museum.

Importation of Prohibited Weapons and Prohibited Devices

Personal importations by residents, non-residents, settlers, temporary and former residents

138. Residents, non-residents, settlers, temporary and former residents may not import prohibited weapons or devices.

Commercial importations

139. Businesses cannot import prohibited weapons or devices, unless the business in question possesses a valid firearms business licence that allows their importation.

140. For example: a replica firearm, which is a prohibited device under the Criminal Code, the Firearms Act and TI9898.00.00, may lawfully be imported into Canada if the importer possesses the required firearms business licence issued by a CFO that indicates that the named business may import prohibited devices for prescribed purposes (e.g.,the use of replica firearms as props in the making of a motion picture, television, or theatrical productions). Prohibited weapons and certain prohibited devices (such as replica firearms) do not fall under the “Import Control List” of the Export and Import Permits Act. Thus, no import permits from Global Affairs Canada are required to import them (do not confuse the latter with the above-mentioned firearms business licence which is required).

Importations by public officers

141. Public officers acting in the course of their duties, and individuals acting on behalf of and under the authority of a domestic police force, the Canadian forces, a visiting force, or of a federal or provincial department may import prohibited weapons or devices, or move them in transit through Canada. Their importation must be for official business. Firearms licences, authorizations, permits or registration certificates are not required, but proof of official status and approval from the public officer’s superior(s) must be confirmed. Public officers or other such individuals cannot import prohibited weapons or devices by mail.

Importation of ammunition

142. For comprehensive information on ammunition and explosives permit requirements, see Memorandum D19-6-1, Administration of the Explosives Act.

Personal importations by residents

143. Residents may import certain quantities of ammunition. An Explosives Import Permit issued by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) is not required for the quantities listed below if the ammunition is imported with the person importing it and if it’s for private use and not for commercial purposes.

144. An Explosives In Transit Permit, issued by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), is required for all in-transit shipments of ammunition for quantities above those listed in paragraph 141.

Personal importations by non-residents

145. Non-residents may import certain quantities of ammunition. As outlined in Memorandum D2-1-1, Temporary Importation of Baggage and Conveyances by Non-residents, a non-resident may temporarily import under TI 9803.00.00, duty- and tax free:

146. Non-residents, who import more than the duty-free allowance of ammunition, as outlined in paragraph 143, but not more than the limits listed in paragraph 141, must pay duty and taxes on the excess amount of ammunition.

147. Non-residents may import certain quantities of ammunition. An Explosives Importation Permit issued by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) is not required for the quantities listed in Paragraph 141 if the ammunition is imported for private use and not for sale.

148. Non-residents may move ammunition in transit through Canada.

149. A single shipment may consist of safety cartridges, primers, gunpowder, etc., up to the quantities listed above.

150. Caps for toy guns may be imported for private use or sale without an Explosives Importation Permit when packed with individual novelties, other than toy guns, and imported in a quantity of not more than 50 per package.

151. Both residents and non-residents importing ammunition must comply with the Storage, Display, Transportation and Handling of Firearms by Individuals Regulations.

Commercial and other types of importations

152. Commercial importations of ammunition that are not prohibited by an Order in Council require an Explosives Importation Permit from NRCan and a valid firearms business licence.

153. Businesses importing prohibited ammunition must comply with the Storage, Display and Transportation of Firearms and Other Weapons by Businesses Regulations.

Importations by public officers

154. In the case of public officers acting in the course of their duties, and individuals acting on behalf of and under the authority of a domestic police force, the Canadian forces, a visiting force, or of a federal or provincial department, may import ammunition or move them in transit through Canada. Their importation must be for official business. Firearms licences, authorizations, permits or registration certificates are not required, but proof of official status and approval from the public officer’s superior(s) must be confirmed.

Importation of military goods

155. An import permit issued under the provisions of the Export and Import Permits Act is required to import certain specified military weapons. Under subsection 8(1) of this Act, Canadian residents or businesses can apply to Global Affairs Canada for an import permit to import goods that are on the Import Control List (generally military hardware and munitions). If such permit is issued, it may specify the quantity and quality of the goods to be imported, who can import them, where, and from whom they can be imported, as well as other terms and conditions. The importer must also be duly registered with the Controlled Goods Directorate of Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) to obtain a permit.

Exportation

156. Section 95 of the Customs Act requires all goods exported from Canada to be reported to the CBSA and in such manner as may be prescribed.

157. All shipments of non-restricted and restricted firearms destined for export to countries other than the U.S. are subject to export control under the Export and Import Permits Act and must be accompanied by an export permit issued by Global Affairs Canada.

158. Residents may export certain quantities of ammunition. An Explosives Export Permit, issued by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), is not required for the quantities listed in paragraph 141, if the ammunition is exported with the person exporting it and if it’s for private use and not for commercial purposes.

Exception: An Explosives Export Permit is required for all commercial exportations of ammunition.

159. In the case of prohibited firearms, certain prohibited devices, components, parts, or ammunition, a company may export them if it has the proper firearms business licence and export permit. An export permit is required to export such goods to the U.S and most other countries. Before exporting any of these items, individuals and/or companies should check with customs officials in the country to which the goods are exported to verify if these goods are admissible in that country.

160. For more detailed information on export regulations, please consult the Guide to Canada’s Export Controls published by Global Affairs Canada.

161. Applications for export permits are available from any CBSA office or from Export Controls Division, at the following mailing address:

Export Controls Division
Trade Controls Bureau
Global Affairs Canada
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa ON K1A 0G2

Telephone: 343-203-4331
Fax: 613-996-9933
Email: tie.reception@international.gc.ca
Web site: www.exportcontrols.gc.ca

162. For all firearms being permanently exported from Canada, the exporter must advise the CFP, in order to update the information contained in the Canadian Firearms Registry. For more information, contact the CFP of call 1-800-731-4000.

Foreign requirements for import and export

163. Importers and exporters are reminded that foreign countries, including the United States, have different legal requirements that apply to the purchase, possession, transportation and exportation of firearms, ammunition, weapons and related items. It is recommended that you contact the appropriate authorities in the country you are visiting, to determine if any requirements apply to your situation.

Transportation

Transportation of firearms and weapons by individuals

164. The following transportation requirements apply to all personal importations of firearms. The requirements are summarized below. Please consult the Regulations for further information. The regulations do not apply to public officers. Public officers are:

Transporting non-restricted or antique firearms

165. An individual may transport a non-restricted or antique firearm in a vehicle only if the non-restricted or antique firearm is unloaded.

166. An individual may transport a non-restricted or antique firearm in an unattended vehicle only if the non-restricted or antique firearm is unloaded and securely locked in the trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked. If the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment, the non- restricted or antique firearm must not be visible from outside the vehicle and the vehicle or part of the vehicle that contains the non-restricted/antique firearm must be securely locked.

167. An individual may transport an antique firearm that is a handgun only if it is in a locked container that is made of an opaque material and is of such strength, construction and nature that it cannot readily be broken open or into or accidentally opened during transportation.

Transporting restricted or prohibited firearms

168. An individual may transport a restricted or prohibited firearm in a vehicle only if the restricted firearm is unloaded, rendered inoperable by means of a secure locking device, and in a locked container that cannot be readily broken open or into or accidentally opened during transportation. If the prohibited firearm is an automatic firearm that has a bolt or bolt carrier that is removable, the bolt or bolt carrier must be removed.

169. If the restricted or prohibited firearm is transported in an unattended vehicle, the firearm must be unloaded and securely locked in the trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked. If the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment, the container must not be visible from outside the vehicle and the vehicle or part that contains the restricted or prohibited firearm must be securely locked.

Compliance

170. Travellers should be made aware of these transportation requirements to ensure that they comply with them. Firearms will not be allowed to enter Canada until proper transportation requirements have been met.

171. You may obtain more information on the safe transportation of firearms from any chief firearms officers.

Transportation of firearms, weapons and other regulated goods by businesses

172. Commercial carriers that transport firearms, prohibited weapons, prohibited devices, and prohibited ammunition must have a carrier licence or a firearms business licence that permits transportation. A carrier licence will specify the class(es) of goods they are permitted to carry. However, a business that imports or exports firearms, weapons and/or other regulated goods on its own behalf does not require a carrier licence, provided the firearms business licence specifies this activity. For example: ABC Ltd., which uses its own transportation company (ABC Trucking) to import and export non-restricted firearms, does not require a carrier licence to transport the goods in addition to its firearms business licence, as long as its firearms business licence specifies that transportation is one of the listed privileges.

173. A firearms business licence or a carrier licence is not required for foreign based companies that do not carry on business in Canada and that are moving firearms in transit through Canada on an in-transit manifest.

174. An Explosives In Transit Permit, issued by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), is required for all commercial in-transit shipments of ammunition.

Transporting non-restricted and restricted firearms and prohibited handguns

175. A business may transport restricted and non-restricted firearms and prohibited handguns only if the firearm is unloaded and in a container made of an opaque material of such strength, construction, and nature that it cannot be readily broken open or into or accidentally opened during transportation.

176. If the restricted, non-restricted firearms or prohibited handguns are in an unattended vehicle that is equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the container has to be in that trunk or compartment that must be securely locked.

177. If the unattended vehicle in which the firearms have been left is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the vehicle must be securely locked and the container must not be visible from outside the vehicle.

Transporting prohibited firearms other than prohibited handguns

178. A business may transport a prohibited firearm, other than a prohibited handgun, only if it is unloaded and in a container:

179. If it is an automatic firearm that has a bolt or bolt carrier that can be easily removed, the automatic firearm must be made inoperable by removing the bolt or bolt carrier.

180. If the prohibited firearm, other than a prohibited handgun, is in an unattended vehicle that is equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the container must be in that trunk or compartment which must be securely locked. If the unattended vehicle is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the vehicle or the part of the vehicle that contains the container must be securely locked and the container must not be visible from outside the vehicle.

Transporting prohibited weapons, prohibited devices, and prohibited ammunition

181. A business may transport a prohibited weapon, prohibited device, or prohibited ammunition only if it is in a container:

182. If the restricted weapon, prohibited weapon, prohibited device, or prohibited ammunition is in an unattended vehicle that is equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the container must be in that trunk or compartment and the trunk or compartment must be securely locked. If the unattended vehicle is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the vehicle, or the part of the vehicle that contains the container, must be securely locked and the container must not be visible from outside the vehicle.

Shipping firearms by mail

183. Both individuals and businesses may ship a firearm by mail only if:

184. If a declared firearm, weapon or device is determined to be admissible, the detaining office will contact the importer/agent to arrange for the release of the goods. At this time, the importer must be advised of any permit, authorization, and/or certificate requirements.

185. If a Canadian resident who declares a firearm, weapon or device to the CBSA does not have the appropriate documentation outlined in this Memorandum the item will be held by the CBSA on a BSF241, Non-monetary General Receipt for up to 40 days. Within this time, the importer will be able to:

186. A non-resident who declares a firearm, weapon or device to the CBSA, but does not have the appropriate documentation outlined in this memorandum will be given an opportunity to:

187. If the firearm, weapon or device is deemed inadmissible, the originating district must contact the importer/agent and give the importer the opportunity to:

188. Inadmissible firearms, weapons or devices that are declared at the time of importation into Canada can be detained and exported according to sections 101 and 102 of the Customs Act. Goods may be detained under section 101 of the Act to ensure that their entry into Canada complies with all applicable federal laws. Section 102 of the Act provides authority to export such goods in the absence of any other statutory provision. The export of the goods in these circumstances will not result in an offence under the Criminal Code.

189. Therefore, where a firearm, weapon, or device is reported to a border services officer when imported into Canada according to the Customs Act, but does not meet relevant federal statutory requirements governing its importation, the border services officer may authorize the firearm, weapon, or device to be exported. The item will be held in a secure area until the importer has made the necessary arrangements for the goods to be exported under the CBSA supervision.

Note: In the case of a prohibited firearm, the exporter should, depending on the circumstances, obtain an export permit from Global Affairs Canada to export the firearm from Canada.

Seizure

190. Seizure of any undeclared firearm, prohibited weapon or device is warranted when a traveller was given the opportunity to declare the firearm, prohibited weapon or device by completing a declaration card or by responding to questioning, and did not declare it. Border services officers will undertake appropriate enforcement action in this respect.

Additional Information

191. Questions concerning the information contained in this memorandum should be directed to the Border Information Service at 1-800-461-9999 within Canada. From outside Canada call 204-983-3500 or 506-636-5064. Long distance charges will apply. Agents are available Monday to Friday (08:00 – 16:00 local time / except holidays). TTY is also available within Canada: 1-866-335-3237.

192. The Canadian Firearms Program is responsible for delivering information relating to the Firearms Act to the Canadian public and can be reached at:

Telephone: 1-800-731-4000
Fax: 613-825-0315
Web site


Appendix A – Diagram of how to Calculate Barrel Length and Describing Parts of a Firearm

1. For a revolver, the barrel length is the distance from the muzzle of the barrel to the breech end immediately in front of the cylinder.

2. For other firearms barrel length means the distance from the muzzle of the barrel up to and including the chamber, but not including the length of any component, part, or accessory, including those designed or intended to suppress the muzzle flash or recoil.

Barrel length Barrel length

Appendix B – Table of Import Document Requirements

Importer Non-restricted Firearm Restricted Firearm Prohibited Firearm
Business/museum Valid business licence issued under the Firearms Act that allows the importation of this class of firearm. Valid business licence issued under the Firearms Act that allows the importation of this class of firearm. Valid business licence issued under the Firearms Act that allows the importation of this class of firearm.
Import permit
Carrier Valid carrier licence that allows the transportation of this class of firearm. Valid carrier licence that allows the transportation of this class of firearm. Valid carrier licence that allows the transportation of this class of firearm.
Police force/Canadian forces/Visiting forces General Import Permit No. 60 shown on manifest
Letter of authorization from chief of police or commanding officer
General Import Permit No. 60 shown on manifest
Letter of authorization from chief of police or commanding officer
General Import Permit No. 60 shown on manifest
Letter of authorization from chief of police or commanding officer
Resident (previously exported) Valid PAL or POL Valid PAL or POL
Valid registration certificate for the firearm(s)
Authorization to transport; if travelling to and from a Canadian port of entry outside the province of residence.
Valid PAL or POL
Valid registration certificate for the firearm(s)
Import permit
Authorization to transport; if travelling to and from a Canadian port of entry outside the province of residence.
Resident (acquired outside of Canada) Valid PAL or POL Valid PAL or POL
Valid registration certificate for the firearm(s)
Authorization to transport; if travelling to and from a Canadian port of entry outside the province of residence.
Prohibited entry
Non-resident
(non-licensed) *
At least 18 years of age
Non-resident Firearm Declaration
Confirmation fee
At least 18 years of age
Authorization to transport required
Non-resident Firearm Declaration
Confirmation fee
Prohibited entry
Non-resident
(licensed with registration certificate) *
At least 18 years of age
Valid PAL or POL
At least 18 years of age
Valid PAL or POL
Valid registration certificate for the firearm(s)
Authorization to transport required
Prohibited entry except for former residents who present:
Valid PAL or POL
Valid registration certificate for the firearm(s)
Import permit
Authorization to transport required
Non-resident
(licensed without registration certificate) *
At least 18 years of age
Valid PAL or POL
At least 18 years of age
Valid PAL or POL
Authorization to transport required
Non-resident Firearm Declaration
Confirmation fee
Prohibited entry
* Non-residents include settlers, temporary residents, former residents and seasonal residents.

Appendix C – Authorizing Canadian Agents for Supernumerary or Special Constables

Province/Territory Authorizing Agents Legislative Authority
Canada-wide Royal Canadian Mounted Police Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
Newfoundland (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Royal Newfoundland Constabulary
(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Act
Nova Scotia (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Attorney General of Nova Scotia

(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) Nova Scotia’s Police Act

New Brunswick Royal Canadian Mounted Police Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
Prince Edward Island (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Attorney General of Prince Edward Island
(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) Prince Edward Island’s Police Act
Quebec (a) Minister of Public Safety
(b) Mayor of Municipality

(a) Quebec’s Police Act
(b) Quebec’s Police Act

Ontario (a) Solicitor General of Ontario
(b) Commissioner of the Ontario Provincial Police
(c) Police Services Board (Chief of Police)
(a) Police Services Act
(b) Police Services Act
(c) Police Services Act
Manitoba (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Attorney general of Manitoba
(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) Provincial Police Act
Saskatchewan (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Provincial Minister of Justice
(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) Saskatchewan’s Police Act, Part v
Alberta (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Solicitor General of Alberta
(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) Alberta’s Police Act
Yukon/Nunavut/ Northwest Territories Royal Canadian Mounted Police Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
British Columbia (a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police
(b) Attorney General of British Columbia
(c) Chiefs of the following forces: Vancouver; West Vancouver; Abbotsford; Nelson; Saanich; Victoria; Oak Bay; New Westminster; Esquimalt; Delta; Central Saanich; Port Moody
(a) Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act
(b) British Columbia’s Police Act
(c) British Columbia’s Police Act
Issuing office:
Other Government Departments Programs Unit
Program and Policy Management Division
Programs Branch
Headquarters file:
68515-03
Legislative references:
Other references:
Superseded memorandum D:
D19-13-2 dated January 23, 2013
Date modified: