A law firm that specializes in helping people protect their Second Amendment rights issued a warning to gun owners that could save them from receiving a knock on the door from the federal government.
Kirk Evans, the president of U.S. LawShield, discussed with the Washington Examiner how the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives said forced-reset triggers could qualify some firearms as machine guns.
Evans suggested that gun owners should get in contact with a lawyer if they think their gun trigger falls under the ATF’s definition of a forced-reset trigger.
Evans warned against contacting the ATF because it said in its letter it reviewed “some” forced-reset triggers but did not say which ones, making it hard for gun owners to discern if the triggers in their firearms are forced-reset.
“I would not be doing that, I would not be calling the ATF,” Evans said. “And then No. 2, I would certainly avoid publicizing anything that I have. I would probably not be generating social media posts that say, ‘Ha ha ha, I got one of these triggers that the ATF doesn’t want.'”
Evans said it is possible for gun owners to swap out their forced-reset trigger for a different one, but the ATF would still consider the part as a machine gun since it can be “readily assembled.” He clarified he does not agree with this logic, but ditching the forced-reset trigger could work as a means to avoid trouble with the ATF.
U.S. LawShield has not taken legal action against the ATF over its announcement on forced-reset triggers, Evans said, although he has shared his frustrations on how immediate the ATF’s passing of the new rule was, noting how the agency would normally give gun owners time to react.
“Basically, the ATF just said, ‘Uh, we got our rules, we looked at these things, and boom, some of them might be illegal and we’re not going to tell which ones,'” Evans said.
Machine guns are subject to more restrictions under the National Firearms Act and the Gun Control Act, ATF’s letter claims. Anyone who violates the NFA’s and GCA’s rules can be fined up to $250,000 and sentenced to up to 10 years in prison.