Unique Serial Number Application
Commencing July 1, 2018, any person who possesses a self-manufactured or self-assembled firearm that does not bear a serial number assigned to it shall apply to the Department of Justice (Department) for a unique serial number by January 1, 2019.
Additionally, commencing July 1, 2018, prior to manufacturing or assembling a firearm, a person shall apply to the Department for a unique serial number.
We recommend that you review California Penal Code sections 29180-29184 and the California Code of Regulations, title 11, division 5, chapter 41 for complete instructions on the process and information regarding firearms that are eligible for a unique serial number prior to starting the application process.
The Unique Serial Number Application shall be submitted via the California Firearms Application Reporting System (CFARS) to request unique serial number(s). Access CFARS at https://cfars.doj.ca.gov.
Fees Associated With Obtaining a Unique Serial Number
The initial fee for submitting an application for a unique serial number is $35.00. This fee will cover the $20.00 cost for the firearms eligibility check conducted by the Department and the request for one unique serial number for one firearm through CFARS. If you have multiple self-manufactured or self-assembled firearms, or if you intend to manufacture or assemble multiple firearms, you may request multiple unique serial numbers during the same transaction. The fee for each subsequent unique serial number within the same transaction is $15.00. There is no limit to the number of unique serial numbers that an applicant may request within a single application and corresponding transaction.
What to expect after submission of the application
Once the application is submitted and received, the Department will notify you via the CFARS and/or U.S. mail whether you are eligible or ineligible to receive a unique serial number. If you are approved, you must engrave the assigned serial number on the firearm within the associated timeframe (manufactured/assembled or intend to) and are required to upload images through CFARS. Sample images may be viewed here.