Federal Firearms License (FFL) holders provide the people of Michigan a safe and legal way to sell, trade, purchase firearms and firearm-related accessories, such as ammo.
Having your Concealed Pistol License in Michigan is not a requirement of an FFL, but most people get their CPL before their FFL.
There are just a few requirements to follow to get your FFL in Michigan. At Rocket FFL, we hope to make this process as easy as possible, eliminating as much hassle as we can from the process.
In this article, we will discuss:
- FFL Cost
- Steps to getting your FFL in Michigan
- Federal Requirements for an FFL
- Michigan State Requirements for an FFL
- Michigan Local (City/Town) FFL Requirements
- FAQs and additional resources
FFL Cost in Michigan
How much does an FFL cost in Michigan? An FFL in Michigan costs between $30-$200 for the first 3 years.
When you fill out an FFL application with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), you choose from several license types. Depending on what you want to do with the license determines the kind of FFL Gun Dealer License you need.
Each license type varies in price due to the different functions it allows the FFL licensee to perform. This includes whether the licensee is just trying to sell a few handguns, incorporate gunsmithing, trade curios, or handle NFA items.
Each of these different activities requires a different type of license for which the application fees range in price.
FFL License Cost by Type
Due to established gun laws, if you want to handle NFA items or be a distributor of silencers/suppressors, short-barrel rifles, machine guns, destructive devices, etc., you must pay additional costs in the form of an SOT license registration.
Steps to Getting Your FFL
To become an FFL dealer in Michigan, you need to:
- Ensure you meet the federal and state requirements for an FFL
- Choose your FFL type
- Take an FFL course
- Submit your FFL application forms
Step 1: Ensure You Meet FFL Federal Requirements
All federal requirements for FFL holders need to be met before moving forward with getting your FFL in Michigan. These requirements are the same for everyone in the United States.
We detail them for you below.
Step 2: Choose Your FFL Type
Perhaps the most complicated step is choosing and making sure you apply for the appropriate type of FFL. As the responsible person (RP) in your company, you need to determine what you are trying to do with your business and choose the type of license that allows you to lawfully operate.
The average FFL dealer needs either a Type 01 license to sell firearms and gunsmithing or a Type 07 license used for manufacturing handguns. A Type 07 license lets businesses both manufacture and sell firearms.
We’ve put together this article, where we break down the differences of each license and why you might need one over another.
NFA firearms and accessories require an SOT (Special Occupational Taxpayer) designation. You can not apply for your SOT until after you have been assigned an FFL number. The SOT requirement is enacted by the National Firearms Act of 1934 (NFA), which was later updated with Title II of the Gun Control Act.
Planning to sell these NFA items means you’ll need to be an SOT:
- Full-auto machine guns
- Short-barreled rifles — which includes rifles with a barrel shorter than 16″ or an overall length under 26″ each
- Short-barreled shotguns — which includes shotguns with a barrel shorter than 18″ or an overall length under 26” each
- Destructive devices — including grenades, mines, bombs, etc.
- Any other firearm weapons such as pen guns, specific customized handguns, etc.
We’ve created a table that describes each FFL License type and which SOT Class to apply for after receiving your FFL number to sell firearms and accessories covered under the NFA.
For more specifics, take our Get Your FFL Course, in which we outline the process from start to finish.
Step 3: Take an FFL Course
We believe that your next imperative step is taking an FFL course from a qualified instructor.
With heightened gun laws, getting your CPL, let alone your FFL License, can be complex. For this reason, I developed courses based on my decades of research and work as a firearms attorney to help you get your FFL hassle-free.
My course not only covers getting your FFL, but it also covers everything you need to know to get your FFL, specifically in Michigan.
My background as a firearms attorney specializing in ATF compliance has helped me help others rather than profit off their mistakes! I’ll teach you how to become and remain compliant the first time.
I highly recommend that you get this FFL Course and the SOT Course combo. It’s only an extra $10, but it teaches you how to register to buy and sell silencers and Short Barreled Rifles (SBRs) in addition to standard firearms covered by just your FFL.
Step 4: Submit Your FFL Application Forms
After completing our course, meeting all the federal and state requirements, and choosing the license type you need, you are ready to apply for your FFL.
Certain states require multiple forms and extra steps depending on your location. However, the Rocket FFL course covers every detail you need and access to all the necessary documents to quickly and efficiently apply for your Federal Firearms License.
Federal Requirements for an FFL
The federal requirements for getting an FFL, whether you want to use it for trading curios or as a gunsmith, are the same for every state.
The United States Federal Government requires FFL holders:
- Be at least 21 years of age
- Be a US Citizen or legal permanent resident
- Be legally permitted to possess firearms and ammo with no felony convictions, no records of being a psychological patient, or a current user of controlled substances
- Have a predetermined location for conducting FFL business, including home-based FFLs
- Have never violated the Gun Control Act (GCA) or related regulations
- Do not make any false statements/claims on your FFL application
Michigan state-specific requirements can be addressed once you satisfy all of these Federal requirements.
Michigan State Requirements for an FFL
The state of Michigan requirements for an FFL can be broken down into two categories:
- State licensing requirements
- Business registration requirements
Michigan State Licensing Requirements
While there aren’t any additional special licensing requirements for Michigan FFL holders, there’s a specific tax license all potential MI firearms customers need for handgun purchases.
Customers must obtain this Concealed Pistol License from their local law enforcement agency or police department to purchase a handgun.
You can not legally sell a handgun to anyone in the state of Michigan without a CPL.
Michigan Business Registration Requirements
As with any other state, gun dealers must register their business with the State of Michigan.
Please be advised that, although you may have previously registered your business with another state, Michigan still requires you to register your FFL gun dealership officially in Michigan. We suggest out-of-state registration in our Get Your FFL course.
Learn how to register your FFL business in Michigan through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. They provide an excellent resource for how to register your Michigan business.
Michigan Local (City/Town) FFL Requirements
The biggest hurdle for most Michigan FFLs is local zoning requirements. You must ensure the location you use as a base of operations (often a home-based FFL) allows for a business.
A home-based FFL business will often be told it can’t operate in a residential area due to a misunderstanding about the type of business activity held there.
When a zoning department hears “FFL,” they may assume regular retail business and heavy foot traffic. Still, most home-based FFLs don’t have retail-level traffic and only have occasional visits from customers.
This kind of valuable information is covered, including requirements for specific business hours, in our Get Your FFL course. Check it out!
Michigan FFL Summary
In reality, getting your Michigan FFL is relatively easy if you know what to expect.
Our course lays out all federal, state, and local requirements, plus breaks down the best way to establish and legally operate your firearms business. We can help you fill in the proper forms so that you’ll be on your way to being the next Michigan FFL holder!
The danger of spending too many hours researching and trying to get it right on your own is remedied with our course. Confidently fill out your forms and get through the process with ease with just a click! When it comes to firearm business establishment, you want to know that you are running your business safely and within all the confines of both federal and local laws.
Let me help you take the next step toward your dream!
FAQ for Michigan FFL Licensing
How much does it cost to get an FFL in Michigan?
An FFL in Michigan costs anywhere from $30 to $200 for 3 years, depending on the type of FFL you choose. For a full breakdown of the cost of an FFL, check here.
Do I need an FFL in Michigan?
Yes! If you plan to sell, transfer, manufacture, or do anything else for profit involving firearms, you are legally required to have an active FFL.
Does Michigan require extra licensing for FFLs?
No, there are no additional licensing requirements for FFLs in Michigan, but there is a special tax license that customers must acquire to purchase a firearm from an FFL dealer.
Do I need to register a business for an FFL in Michigan?
Yes, like any other state, if you are forming a business for your FFL, it must be registered in Michigan.
Can I get an FFL to save money on guns?
No, you should not get an FFL just to save money on guns. One of the main requirements for getting your FFL is “business intent,” meaning you intend to operate a gun-related business.
However, you may wait to start your business until after you receive your FFL number.
Extra Resources For Getting a Michigan FFL
US Code § 923: Code § 923 covers federal regulations for the import, manufacture, and dealing of firearms and ammunition. This is the federal law that requires those operating firearms businesses to get an FFL.
US CFR § 478.47 – Issuance of license.: This code explains how a Federal Firearms License is issued, including who must assign the license number. It requires the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) to qualify applicants based on a predetermined list of requirements and to issue Federal Firearms Licenses.
If a correctly submitted FFL application has been submitted on ATF Form 7, the Chief of the Federal Firearms Licensing Center (a department at the ATF) must issue the license and assign a serial number to the licensee.
Gun Control Act (GCA): The GCA of 1968 establishes stricter laws on the firearms industry than were already present in the NFA. New regulations regarding firearms offenses, firearms/ammunition sales to “prohibited persons,” and federal jurisdiction for “destructive devices” (bombs, grenades, mines, etc.) were created with the GCA.
Starting a Business in Michigan: Need help finding out where to start with your new business? Check out this article from the Michigan Department of State showing you how to do just that!
Michigan Department of Law Enforcement Firearm Laws Manual: Firearms dealers in Michigan can use this guide to properly handle firearms sales and navigate current gun laws.
FFL Types: Use this guide to make sure that you choose the right type of Federal Firearms License for what you want to do.
Home-Based FFL: Don’t want to pay for a storefront but wish to operate as an FFL holder from your home? We explain how to do it from start to finish.