A permit to acquire is a permit you must obtain prior to acquiring a firearm.
They are issued by the Licensing and Regulation Division and are valid for 28 days from the day they are issued – not the day your payment for the permit is made.
Submitting a permit to acquire
You are able to lodge an application for your first permit to acquire at the same time as you lodge your application to become licensed.
When submitting a permit to acquire, you may be required to provide additional information to substantiate a genuine need.
If it is your first firearm, you may need to serve the legislated waiting period before the permit can be issued. Because of this, it is strongly suggested that you submit an application to the Licensing and Regulation Division at least four weeks before you require it.
- and fill out the form that applies to your needs.
- Send the form to the Licensing and Regulation Division.
- Once we receive your application and if it is approved, we will send your permit to you directly.
- You must then pay the permit fee as per the instructions attached to your permit.
Note: applications for permits to acquire that are lodged through a Licensed Firearms Dealer using the Online Dealers System are approved within 28 days. If approved, the permit will be sent to the dealer electronically. When an application is refused, we will inform you of the reasons your application was denied and any appeal options you have.
Purchasing a handgun for sport or target shooting
If you are licensed to participate in sport or target shooting and want to purchase a handgun for sport purposes, you must attach the endorsement of an approved handgun target shooting club to your permit to acquire application.
Advertising firearms for sale
It is not an offence for a person who is not a Licensed Firearms Dealer to advertise the sale of firearms if they include the following details in the advertisement:
- A statement that the proposed sale is to be arranged. i.e. brokered,through a .
- The serial number of the firearm being offered for sale.
- The registered owner's licence number.
It is important to note:
Licensed Firearms Dealers who advertise firearms for sale must include the following information in any advertisement they place:
- their firearm dealers' licence number
- the serial number of the firearm being offered for sale
- the registered owner's licence number
Firearms can be advertised for sale anywhere, including online, provided that the advertisement details, the serial number of the firearm for sale and the dealer's/owners details and licence number are advertised.
Advertisements listed on third-party trading websites such as Gumtree or eBay need to comply with the service provider's terms and conditions of use.
Buying and selling firearms
You can only purchase firearms, ammunition, parts and accessories if you have a current Victorian firearms licence. That licence must allow you to carry and use those items.
To purchase a firearm you must also have a Permit to Acquire issued by Victoria Police.
Transferring a firearm
To transfer ownership of a firearm between two Victorian firearm licence holders, the person receiving the firearm must have:
- a current Victorian firearm licence that permits them to possess, carry or use that category and type of firearm
- a genuine reason for possessing that firearm
- a Permit to Acquire issued by Victoria Police
Both licence holders must then visit a Licensed Firearms Dealer who will act as an agent to broker the transfer of the firearm. Before the Licensed Firearms Dealer can broker the transfer they will require you to provide:
- a Permit to Acquire that is valid and current
- proof that you have paid for your permit
- the firearm that is being transferred
Transferring firearms interstate
Victorians transferring firearms to licence holders interstate need to engage a Victorian Licensed Firearms Dealer who is able to arrange to send the firearms to a Licensed Firearms Dealer in the recipient's state or territory.
For example, a Victorian sending a firearm to a Queensland licence holder would have to arrange for a Victorian Licensed Firearms Dealer to send the firearm to a Licensed Firearms Dealer in Queensland from whom the recipient can collect the firearm.
Receiving a firearm from interstate
You will need:
- a Victorian firearms licence that permits you to possess, carry or use that category and type of firearm.
- a permit to acquire which demonstrates your genuine reason for possessing that firearm.
- a Victorian Licensed Firearms Dealer who can receive the firearm from interstate and act as the agent in transferring the firearm to you in Victoria.
Note: If you live on the border of South Australia and Victoria, or NSW and Victoria, you may submit a permit to acquire issued in one state to a licensed firearm dealer located in the other state. Victoria has an agreement in place with South Australia and NSW to recognise the other state's permits to acquire.
Borrowing a firearm
If you hold a Victorian firearm licence, you can borrow a firearm registered in Victoria or in another state or territory provided:
- you have their permission to do so.
- your Victorian licence allows you to carry and use that category of firearm.
If borrowing the firearm from a firearm licence holder in another state or territory, you notify the Licensing and Regulation Division within 7 days of bringing the firearm into Victoria.
Note: If borrowing a firearm from interstate, you should check with the relevant state or territory’s firearm registry to ensure you comply with the law in that state or territory.
If you hold a Victorian firearm licence, you can borrow a firearm from a licensed firearm dealer provided:
- your licence is more than 28 days old.
- you already have at least one firearm registered to you.
- you have their permission to do so.
- your Victorian licence allows you to possess, carry and use that category of firearm.
Borrowing a firearm for overseas shooting competitions
However you must provide the Licensing and Regulation Division with written authorisation from the registered owner.
You must also apply to the Department of Home Affairs for a Restricted Goods Permit in order to be able to take the firearm overseas. Information regarding travelling with firearms to and from Australia can be found at the Department of Home Affairs.
Note: this information does not apply to handguns used for armed guard security activities. It is a special condition for holders of a handgun licence for the purposes of operating a private security business to ensure that each handgun remains registered to the holder's name.
Loaning firearms for performance and re-enactment
Licensed firearm dealers may loan blank-firing or permanently inoperable firearms for use in films, television or theatrical re-enactment if they hold a Theatrical Armoury Permit.
Licensed firearm dealers (or one of their employees) must supervise the use of any dealership firearm(s) except imitation handguns.
An application for a Theatrical Armoury Permit must be submitted four weeks before the permit is required.
Note: dealers cannot loan a firearm at a rate equivalent to the full cost of the firearm.
Reviewed 29 June 2021