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UPS Announces New Rules for Shipping Firearm Parts: What You Need to Know

Shipping company UPS recently updated its policies regarding what kind of firearms parts. How has this impacted the industry? Come find out.

The United Parcel Service recently altered its rules regarding the shipping of firearms and firearm parts, which has already begun to affect the gun industry.

80% Arms GST-9 Tan in Box
80% Arms GST-9 Tan in Box

Under the new policy, UPS says it “does not accept any firearms, frames or receivers, or partially complete, disassembled, or nonfunctional frames or receivers (as defined by the new federal regulation) unless those items have been identified and given a serial number in compliance with federal requirements.”

UPS confirmed with Pew Pew Tactical that its shipping policies have been updated and that the company will no longer ship unserialized frames or receivers per the ATF’s upcoming regulation change in August.

Under those expected regulations, the ATF will require serial numbers and background checks on sales of 80% frames and receivers.

“UPS has updated its requirements for firearms shipments to adhere to nationwide regulations recently issued by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that go into effect on August 24, 2022, and to address existing laws in a number of states,” Matthew O’Connor, Director of Media Relations, told Pew Pew Tactical in an email.

80% Arms GST-9 Parts
80% Arms GST-9 Parts

Gun Industry Responds

The policy came to light after Ghost Firearms, a parts company based in Florida, received a letter from UPS in early July.

In the letter, UPS informed Ghost that their shipped packages would be seized and destroyed.

The reason? They “may be violating applicable laws concerning the shipment of ‘ghost guns’ to unauthorized locations.”

80% Arms GST-9 Complete
A “ghost gun” is a term that refers to guns that are often put together using parts or kits. These frames, receivers, or kits are usually only 80% completed upon arrival and must be finished or completed by the owner prior to it being functional.

Vice reported that an operations manager at Ghost Firearms, rebranded to Grid Firearms in 2018, said the company had over $30,000 of products in the shipping system.

Luckily, the packages made it to their destinations; but Grid wasn’t the only company that received a letter with the policy change.

Several other companies also received letters from UPS notifying them of the new guidelines.  

80% Arms received a similar letter. (Photo: 80% Arms)

“The UPS (United Parcel Service) has canceled the commercial accounts of all gun dealers and any companies that ship even firearm parts or accessories. Companies affected by this change in policy include smaller companies like Grid Defense to retail giants like Brownells,” 80% Arms published on its blog.

The company, which makes 80% parts and kits, said they too had received a letter from UPS.

“Contrary to what their letter states, we are in complete alignment with federal and state laws and do not ship any products to any states that prohibit or restrict these items.”

All Done with 80% Receiver
80% Receiver, completed

What Does This Mean for the Industry?

Moving forward and with the August deadline for new ATF regulations looming, many retailers and consumers are asking…what’s next?

For now, FedEx and USPS’ shipping policies remain unchanged.

80% AR-15 Lowers, All Sides
80% AR-15 lowers

Still, there are concerns that mounting pressure from anti-gun politicians coupled with UPS’ change may spur other shipping companies to adopt similar measures.

“Thankfully for us we ONLY ship using FedEx and USPS. Still, this sets a dangerous precedence,” 80% Arms said in a post.

Starting Pilot Hole, 80% Arms
A PPT contributor works on completing an 80% AR lower.

“What we didn’t see coming was shipping services deciding to join in on the virtue signaling as well. It didn’t matter if companies were completely compliant with the ATF or shipping products to states that allowed the purchase and ownership of whatever gun-related products in packages — UPS didn’t care and abruptly pulled the plug on the gun industry’s ability to ship things through their service.”

“As a result, it’s likely that hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of products have been confiscated, destroyed or stolen by UPS employees.”

80% Arms Lowers, FCG Pocket
80% Arms Lowers

As of this writing, no other shipping companies have indicated future policy changes.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation – the trade association for the firearms industry – told Second Amendment Foundation that they are aware of the issue and are currently trying to find out the extent of the situation.

“It’s a blanket ban,” NSSF’s Mark Oliva told SAF. “We’re still looking into it.”

80% Arms GST-9 Tan

Pew Pew Tactical is following this story and will provide updates as they become available, so keep checking back.

What do you think of this policy change? Let us know in the comments below. To stay up to date on all the latest news, check out our Weekly Wrap series or head to our news category.

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20 Leave a Reply

  • Commenter Avatar
    David Vendt

    UPS is a gun hater. I won't do business with them anymore if I can help it. Go woke go broke. I hope it happens to them. Defend the ATF and UPS. What they are doing is totally wrong and unconstitutional.

    December 28, 2022 9:42 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    UPS excepted a package from a gun parts dealer when it got to the final destination the local UPS terminal will not deliver the package to the FFL dealer it sat there for ten days until they told me I had to come pick up the package if I wanted it. I told her it was a serial number part and it had to go to an FFL dealer so they can run a background check. After arguing for 30 minutes, she tossed me the package and told me to get out

    December 14, 2022 6:03 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    I tried to send a pistol magazine, empty of course, to a leather craftsman on Etsy to use as a mold for a carry pouch. The manager at a local UPS store in Phoenix, AZ refused to accept the magazine for shipment. She claimed that it “is company policy not to ship any firearms, including parts and accessories”. I lodged a complaint on the UPS website and will avoid using this company for any shipping needs in the future.

    December 6, 2022 6:08 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Howard Smith

    Virtue signaling and addressing the wrong problem. Criminals don't build guns, they steal them.

    September 13, 2022 10:38 am
  • Commenter Avatar

    Reading the agreement that they sent to me, section 12.2, we have to let UPS examine our A&D books whenever they please. I told them they needed a warrant to see them and I would not consent to their terms, and we got cut off. Hopefully FEDEX won't do the same.

    September 3, 2022 9:43 am
  • Commenter Avatar

    Went to UPS Customer Service on 8/29/22. They will no longer accept firearms at their Customer Service locales. You have to arrange pickup at your door. I'm boycotting them.

    August 30, 2022 8:08 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Jimmy dean

    Ups has been leaning hard to the left for some time , it’s yet another company that is positioning itself to be seen as progressive and woke. Too bad they don’t focus more on correcting the declining service they have been providing. Image over substance is the norm for UPS now

    July 28, 2022 6:14 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Jake S

    I am setting up a web site to sell firearms accessories. Square suspended my account because I was selling " firearms, firearm parts, ammunition, weapons or other devices designed to cause physical harm". I carry scopes, laser sights and bags. but people impacted by this interpretation of the new ATF rule probably already knew this.

    July 27, 2022 6:21 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Deejay Ruhkee

    Well ups can just fuck right off. I'll use alternative shippers for my day to day items.

    July 27, 2022 12:36 am
  • Commenter Avatar

    UPS has a lot of balls assuming the firearms or parts are not serialized and / or shipped illegally, without knowing for sure. But what can you expect from a FAR LEFT, WOKE, Bully of a company.
    I hope someone picks up all the customers that UPS Spit on. By Starting up another Firearms, Firearms Parts and Ammo only shipping service. Then all of US 2A people can tell UPS to stuff it where the SUN don't shine. UPS has been getting too big for it's own spandex shorts for a long time anyway. Someone needs to take the money and customers, UPS doesn't seem to want or need and give us the service and price we deserve, without playing god, like UPS.

    July 27, 2022 12:29 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Good for the goose?

    Let me guess, suddenly anti-government pro-business free market Republicans will want the government (and/or courts) to keep businesses from making their own choices about potential customers. Anybody want wedding cake?

    July 26, 2022 9:20 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Goose hunter

      Little bit of a difference between a small baker and a global corporation. And now the democrats run to defend the cold hands of corporate America?

      July 28, 2022 6:21 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    I'd now like to see an 80% company (or get them all together as a class) and sue UPS for compensation for items shipped by destroyed/confiscated/stolen outright.

    Decorum prohibits me from expressing any other thoughts.

    July 26, 2022 9:12 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    William M Canty

    I wonder if UPS an it's employees understand that by them taking packages cuz they feel it may be an illegal 80% lower, means that they are committing a federal crime of stealing a package from both customers. I hope someone Sue's UPS and puts them people in jail. I trust FedEx and the usps over ups any day.

    July 26, 2022 7:16 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Joseph Love

    We will see a greater presents of the 80% to 100% at the gun show's from these type of sales.
    Show's generally $10.00 to park, $20.00 to enter = $30.00.
    Close to the cost of shipping my last pistol purchase, including small fee to the accepting FFL dealer.

    July 26, 2022 5:40 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    Thanks for the informed article! UPS is another company I will boycott as much as possible. I will gladly pay more to ship with the Post Office and FedEx if they continue to provide service to fellow 2ND AMEND supporters.

    July 26, 2022 5:38 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Timothy Smith

    I say we don't use UPS ever again!

    July 26, 2022 4:57 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    Can anyone say..." Lawsuit"!

    July 26, 2022 4:32 pm
  • Commenter Avatar

    Anyone that opens a bought and pay for package and destroys someone's property needs to be in one place...JAIL!....

    July 26, 2022 10:28 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Allan Nelson

    I just had a firearm shipped via UPS to my local FFL this past week. Glad it made it!

    July 26, 2022 6:09 am
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