VicPol Corporate

Advertising, selling and acquiring firearms

Information on this page is general in nature and may be of assistance to you, however, the Licensing and Registration Division does not guarantee that the information here is wholly appropriate to your circumstances.

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 Licensed Firearm Dealer (see s.101(1)(b) of the Firearms Act 1996)
  • the serial number of the firearm being offered for sale (see s.101(3)(a) of the Firearms Act 1996)
  • the registered owner's licence number (see s.101(3)(b) of the Firearms Act 1996)

The buyer must be correctly licenced to possess, use and carry the firearm and the firearm/s must be transferred between the seller and the buyer through a Licensed Firearms Dealer using a Permit to Acquire.

A person other than the licensed owner of a firearm can advertise the firearm for sale at the request of the owner. However, the person who placed the advertisement cannot keep the firearm in their possession unless they are also a licence holder who holds the same category of licence as the firearms being offered for sale and the capacity to store the firearms in accordance with Schedule 4 of the Firearms Act 1996.

Failure to include the prescribed information in an advertisement is an offence against the Firearms Act 1996. Failure to correctly transfer the firearm and possession of a firearm without a licence are also both offences against the Firearms Act 1996.

Licensed Firearms Dealers who advertise firearms for sale must include the following information in any advertisement they place:

  1. their firearm dealers' licence number (see s.101(1)(a) of the Firearms Act 1996)
  2. the serial number of the firearm being offered for sale (see s.101(3)(a) of the Firearms Act 1996)
  3. the registered owner's licence number (see s.101(3)(b) of the Firearms Act 1996)

Placing advertisements

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 details or the owner's licence number as required.

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

In Victoria, you can only purchase firearms, ammunition, parts and accessories if you have a current Victorian firearms licence and that licence allows you to carry and use those items. To purchase a firearm you must also have a Permit to Acquire issued by Victoria Police.

If you are not a Licensed Firearms Dealer and you advertise your firearm for sale you are still required to have a Licensed Firearms Dealer act as an agent in the sale of the firearm between you and the licence holder you are selling it to. Failure to do so may be considered an offence.

Permits to Acquire

Permits to Acquire 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.

When submitting a Permit to Acquire you may be required to provide additional information to substantiate a genuine need, or serve the legislated waiting period if it is your first firearm 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.

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.

If you are licensed to participate in sport or target shooting and want to acquire a handgun for sport purposes, you must attach the endorsement of an approved handgun target shooting club to your Permit to Acquire application.

If your application is approved, the Licensing and Regulation Division will send your permit to you directly. You must then pay the permit fee as per the instructions attached to your permit.

Applications for Permits to Acquire that are lodged through a Licensed Firearms Dealer using the Online Dealers System are approved in the same way as manual applications and are subject to the same waiting periods, however, they will be sent directly to the dealer electronically.

When an application is refused, the Licensing and Regulation Division will inform you of the reasons your application was denied and any appeal options you have.

Transferring a firearm

Firearms must not be transferred between licence holders without meeting the legislated acquisition process.

To transfer ownership of a firearm between two Victorian 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

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.

Victorians receiving firearms from interstate will need:

  • a Victorian firearms licence that permits them to possess, carry or use that category and type of firearm
  • a Permit to Acquire which demonstrates their 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

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.

Reviewed 20 February 2019