How to Move Firearms Across Borders

Posted by on Sep 21 | 2015

There is a fundamental difference between Canadian and US gun laws. The US permits more types of weapons across the border compared to Canada, and US border agents often exercise more discretion about their response if you violate those rules.

Moving Firearms Across Borders

It is not possible to leave your gun at the Canadian or US border crossing. You must check your firearm into storage before you get to the border crossing, or face severe consequences. If you do not declare your weapon, it will get destroyed, plus you will have to pay a fine and possibly go to jail.

Firearm Shipping Requirements

That said, you can actually bring guns across the border if you declare the weapons, pay a specified fee, fill out a form, provide the required documents, and answer a list of questions as truthfully and accurately as possible.

Some moving companies offer unrestricted firearms shipment, such as the hunting rifles and some air guns, if you prepare them as required by the national, provincial, and territorial regulations.

The mandatory requirements for shipping firearms include:
•    A copy of the Carrier Firearm License to accompany every bill of lading
•    A separate inventory for recording the firearm(s) serial number, make, and model with date and signature from the owner
•    Required State and Provincial import forms

Safe Packing

•    The employees in a business holding a Carrier License are usually not allowed to physically handle or pack firearms, unless they’ve received training. Packaging should only be done by the shipper.
•    The packed firearms must not contain any ammunition, plus they must be trigger locked.
•    The weapons should only be packed in a sturdy, non-transparent container or carton and then sealed.
•    The packaging should then be identified with correct information about each firearm’s serial number, make, and model. However, you should mark the contents of firearms containers on the outside. Instead, attach an envelope with the label Custom Documents on the container.
•    This envelope contains the Firearm Declaration forms (RCMP 5589 and 5590), the Possession and Acquisition License (PAL), and the required Territorial or Provincial documents.


•    The packaging container should be secured in a locked trailer or truck within which it will be transported, though they should be accessible to facilitate inspection by Customs Agents or other government officials.

Finally, it is important to note that any driver handling registered shipments should have a copy of a valid Firearm Carrier License in the vehicle that they can produce upon request.

If you’re looking to move across the border and are planning on bringing your firearms with you, contact Armstrong Moving
for more information on how we can help you safely do so.



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