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New Firearms Legislation

"Bullet Button" Firearms will be Considered Assault Weapons Effective January 1, 2017

Assembly Bill 1135 (Stats. 2016, ch. 40) / Senate Bill 880 (Stats. 2016, ch. 48)

Effective January 1, 2017, "Bullet Button" firearms will be considered assault weapons.

The newest version of the law will revise the definition of "assault weapon" to mean the following:

Rifles: A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that does not have a fixed magazine but has any one of the following:

  1. A pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon.
  2. A thumbhole stock.
  3. A folding or telescoping stock.
  4. A grenade launcher or flare launcher.
  5. A flash suppressor.
  6. A forward pistol grip.

A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that has a fixed magazine with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds.

A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that has an overall length of less than 30 inches.

Pistols: A semiautomatic pistol that does not have a fixed magazine but has any one of the following:

  1. A threaded barrel, capable of accepting a flash suppressor, forward handgrip, or silencer.
  2. A second handgrip.
  3. A shroud that is attached to, or partially or completely encircles, the barrel that allows the bearer to fire the weapon without burning the bearer’s hand, except a slide that encloses the barrel.
  4. The capacity to accept a detachable magazine at some location outside of the pistol grip.

A semiautomatic pistol with a fixed magazine that has the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds.

Shotguns: A semiautomatic shotgun that has both of the following:

  1. A folding or telescoping stock.
  2. A pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon, thumbhole stock, or vertical handgrip.

A semiautomatic shotgun that has the ability to accept a detachable magazine.

Any shotgun with a revolving cylinder.

The law will exempt from punishment a person who possessed a bullet button assault weapon prior to January 1, 2017, if specified requirements are met:

  • Prior to January 1, 2017, the person would have been eligible to register the assault weapon pursuant to subdivision (b) of section 30900.
  • The person lawfully possessed that assault weapon prior to January 1, 2017.
  • The Person registers the assault weapon by January 1, 2018, in accordance with subdivision (b) of section 30900.

All registrations must be submitted electronically via the Internet, through the California Firearms Application Reporting System (CFARS) at https://cfars.doj.ca.gov. The registration fee will be $15 per person (transaction). The registration period will commence January of 2017 and end on December 31, 2017, but not before the effective date of specified regulations. (Early registration is not available.)

A "fixed magazine" will be defined to mean an ammunition feeding device, contained in, or permanently attached to, a firearm in such manner that the device cannot be removed without disassembly of the firearm action.

Please note: The Department is in the process of drafting regulations that specify the acceptable methods of registering an assault weapon.

Firearms Dealers Frequently Asked Questions

To learn more about firearm laws, refer to the CA Legislation Information page.

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