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Legality of M4/M1014 and accessories


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This topic has been raised before, but is now churning again on AR15.com forums. See link below:

 

Discussion of legality of M4/M1014

 

Here's the bottom line: Existing and potential customers of Benelli (M4/M1014 buyers) want some written assurances (other than a small notice on the web site) that their purchase and use of Benelli-manufactured telestocks and 2-rd mag extensions to a pistol-grip M4/M1014 is not illegal under 18 USC §922®.

 

If there is no authoritative and concrete letter, determination, or ruling from BATF as to whether the M4/M1014 is importable under 18 USC §925(d)(3), or whether end users are prohibited from "assembling" a full-featured M4/M1014 under 922®, then the customers would like a comforting written explanation from Benelli as to why they should have no concerns.

 

Understand that those of us who have purchased M4's are being told in various forums by various "knowledgeable" persons that we are everything from "oblivious" to "stupid" for wanting to attach a telescoping stock and 2-rd magazine extension to an M4, and that we are all going to go to the federal pokey if we do it. Obviously, we would like to respond to such comments with supportable facts, but all we have right now are theories.

 

Benelli USA, please provide us with any "hard" information you may have as to why your company is confident that end users are not engaging in illegal activities by adding these accessories to our M4's. Do not spare us the legalese; we have dissected the laws on this backward and forward, and it seems to this humble customer that these "assemblies" are legal precisely because the Attorney General (and/or BATF) has made no specific pronouncement that they are "nonsporting." Is that the basis? Please help us out here.

 

If you cannot provide any such helpful information because the very act of doing so would place this situation in jeopardy, please say so, and we will draw our own conclusions from there.

 

Thank you in advance for any assistance you can provide on this very important topic.

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Many of us are asking the same question that IPGUY is asking. We trust that you will provide us with the proper clarification, so that we may enjoy our M4s/M1014s as close to JSCS-spec'd as legally possible.

 

Thanks in advance.

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Gentlemen,

It is VERY unlikely that you will ever get Benelli to comment on any legal matters.

As a manufacturer, they are bound by certain laws, and as consumers/users we are bound by certain laws.

If they have questions, I'm sure they ask ATF for clarification.

If you have questions, I suggest you do the same.

It's not up to Benelli to provide their interpretation of the laws. Too much at stake for them to do that.

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Tucker, I think it's safe to say that we all had that general feeling initially. However, when Benelli's web site states that the collapsable stock is now legal for civilians under federal law, it begs the question that many are asking...to clarify that statement (which is actually Benelli's interpretation of the law). No one asked Benelli to put that statement on its web site, it was unsolicited. Many want that statement to be true, so they are naturally asking Benelli how it came to believe that statement enough that it would post it on its web site. Hopefully, they asked the ATF for clarification, as you suggested.

 

No harm in asking them. If they don't respond, I'm o.k. with it. I will still love my Benelli, and I will still have great respect for Benelli's Customer Service and Service departments. All three have treated me well smile.gif

 

[ 09-08-2005, 07:42 PM: Message edited by: usctf ]

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Originally posted by usctf:

Tucker, I think it's safe to say that we all had that general feeling initially. However, when Benelli's web site states that the collapsable stock is now legal for civilians under federal law, it begs the question that many are asking...to clarify that statement. No one asked Benelli to put that statement on its web site. That statement was put on the web site by Benelli UNSOLICITED. Therefore, when that statement by Benelli appears to be contrary to

smile.gif The stocks are now legal the ban is gone and current productions of this adjustable stocks are legal for cilvilians. The problem comes from taking a politicaly correct rifle that was banned from changing the config to now changing it but the new weapons made already are legal to purchase depending what your individual state laws.

 

I just purchased a ar15 M4 version with a collaps. stock with no problem.

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Originally posted by tucker301:

If you have questions, I suggest you do the same.

It's not up to Benelli to provide their interpretation of the laws. Too much at stake for them to do that.

Tucker301,

 

As you can see from my post, we civilian customers have fairly exhausted this topic and contacted Benelli and ATF. We've certainly done everything we can do. Hence my request for a written clarification from Benelli. So, your suggestion that we ask ATF for clarification is late but well understood.

 

As for Benelli not having the responsibility to provide their interpretion of the law, I completely disagree. Let's say you bought a pharmaceutical product (prescription drug) from a national pharmacy chain, and you had legitimate concerns that your purchase and/or your use of same might be illegal. Would you have an expectation that the seller explain why it believes that that your purchase and use were legal? Would that expectation be reasonable if the seller went so far as to make an EXPRESS representation on its web site that the product was legal?

 

Hypothetically, if I were ever arrested and prosecuted for "assembling" a prohibited firearm under 922®, I can assure you that part of my defense strategy would rely upon such an express representation of the seller that the product was legal. In view of the ambiguity of the applicable laws, I believe this would be a significant point to make to a judge or jury. And I would also surmise that Benelli would be unable to prevent coughing up its rationale in a deposition or in response to interrogatories and requests for production of documents based on the attorney-client privilege, because the very representation that it is "legal" opens this subject to discovery. I make these points only because when the first Benelli customer having a fully tricked-out M4 gets arrested, this will all likely become public information anyway.

 

So, why not just provide us, their loyal customers, with helpful information that supports our position when law enforcement thinks we're felons?????

 

As I requested in my message, if Benelli believes (for whatever reason) that it CANNOT provide clarification, then just say so, rather than persist in this "speak no evil" silence.

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I understand your situation and the imposing legal ramifications, but you have to understand that Benelli simply cannot get into the role of advising customers on such matters.

 

What if Benelli were to post on this site that your modifications were legal? That's information for which they have immediately become liable. Not only is that a concern, but there's also the concern of them being misquoted, or even that the laws could change or be further defined to make their information irrelevant or even completely wrong in the worst way.

 

Look at the tobacco companies and their history with the federal government.

For years and years, they sold a product, which was known to have harmfuls effects on human health by anyone with half a brain. Yet, for years and years, the federal government, who is supposed to regulate such matters, and protect the general public's well-being, allowed the tobacconists to keep peddling their goods.

Finally, succumbing to overwhelming evidence and public pressure, the government has turned on these companies and has allowed citizens, who through willful use have harmed themselves with a legal product, to file suit after suit against the companies.

The product was legal at the time of manufacture and consumption, yet the manufacturer has still been held accountable under the light of new evidence and testimony.

I'm surprised anyone even makes guns in today's sue me-sue you society.

 

I'm not at all surpised that they fall silent when consumers ask for legal advice regarding ill-written and vague federal regulations.

 

Regarding the pharmaceutical question: Ask the makers of Vioxx, an FDA approved medication, how they feel about it.

 

Sadly, until personal responsibility makes a comeback in this country, manufacturers are going to err on the side of caution on anything resembling a shade of grey.

 

I wonder how many lawyers are salivating over the situation in the wake of Katrina?

Where to begin??? Do I sue the city, the county, the feds, the National Guard, The Weather Channel, or God for my inability to heed evacuation warnings?

 

The government has taken care of me and my family for 3 or 4 generations; and yet when I need them the most, they can't send a bus to my house so I can get out ahead of the deadly storm's path!

Somebody must be held accountable!!

 

/is this thing on?

/lowers head

/leaves stage

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"Legal under Federal law, check your state and local laws before purchasing."

 

Benelli already made a statement on this, so all of the points you make about manufacturers being cautious are, well, kind of irrelevant. My point is that now that Benelli has taken a clear position on this, we want the rationale, because it may help us as we wrangle with these obscure statutory provisions and seemingly contradictory statements propounded by BATF in a private letter.

 

Understand my request. I already KNOW that Benelli thinks this is legal. I want the rationale, the line of thinking, the basis for their decision to make a statement like that on the web site. If the answer is, "Hey, we goofed, we really were trying to say that because the AWB expired, that collapsing stocks are now legal," then let's make that clear that the "legality" statement was not intended in any way to speak to the issue of importation and assembly under 18 USC 925(d)(3) and 922®, respectively. That would be a helpful clarification. Not very satisfying, but helpful nonetheless.

 

Re the Vioxx analogy, I don't get it. That's a product liability issue based on allegations that the drug can kill you.

 

You kind of went off there with the Katrina thing and the lawyers. But, I appreciate the sentiment and agree that the lawsuits will fly for quite a while. Most (not all) of the inner city folks at the Superdome and Convention Center will migrate to other inner cities (Houston?) to perpetuate the only lifestyle they know. Sad, but true, that a large number of the inner city evacuees are simply not even employable, and even if they were, they're not motivated to work. And I wouldn't say that if I didn't live and work so close to it.

 

[ 09-08-2005, 10:59 PM: Message edited by: ipguy ]

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IPGUY,

I agree with you 100%. I talked to Benelli on Friday, The woman said they may try to put something on the website dealing with the mag. extensions. She said the ATF and Benelli are working on a fix for the magazine extensions. They aren't selling any magazine extensions for any of their shotguns, Due to the BATF saying it's illegal because of a technicality. I'm satisfied with the collapsible stock statement on Benelli's website, I just want the magazine extension cleared up.

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  • 4 years later...

If, like any other semi auto assault weapon, then it would come down to foreign parts count. That's why you can configure an AK in military configuration, enough American parts on the gun to allow it. I haven't done a parts count on an M4, but opted to buy an American made mag tube for mine. I don't know if that makes the gun safe for a factory Benelli collapsable stock or not, but another thing to consider, this gun doesn't have a detachable mag on it, so it probably doesn't fall under the assault weapon designation anyway. It's probably safe with both parts factory. I'm trying to figure out where the law would come from, with the 1993 Crime Bill being dead in the water. I'd rather have both parts American made just to be safe. These are just my observations as I'm new to the M4. If anyone cares to correct or argue my viewpoint, feel free. Good information is what we're all after anyway, eh? Above all, this is just conversation, and not a ruling on how to configure your M4.

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If, like any other semi auto assault weapon, then it would come down to foreign parts count. That's why you can configure an AK in military configuration, enough American parts on the gun to allow it. I haven't done a parts count on an M4, but opted to buy an American made mag tube for mine. I don't know if that makes the gun safe for a factory Benelli collapsable stock or not, but another thing to consider, this gun doesn't have a detachable mag on it, so it probably doesn't fall under the assault weapon designation anyway. It's probably safe with both parts factory. I'm trying to figure out where the law would come from, with the 1993 Crime Bill being dead in the water. I'd rather have both parts American made just to be safe. These are just my observations as I'm new to the M4. If anyone cares to correct or argue my viewpoint, feel free. Good information is what we're all after anyway, eh? Above all, this is just conversation, and not a ruling on how to configure your M4.

 

Did you seriously just bump a 4 year old 922r thread dude?

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Benelli USA, please provide us with any "hard" information you may have as to why your company is confident that end users are not engaging in illegal activities by adding these accessories to our M4's.

WHY do people make it OTHER peoples responsibility to see if certain items are legal or not, to purchase and assemble as well???? whatever happened to self reliance???;) YOU know???, research something before YOU buy it!!! COME ON there IP, i can buy full auto trigger groups online for my ar15 but you dont see me buying them and making it the manufacturers responsibility to tell me NOT to put it on my AR!!! i KNOW ITS ILLEGAL and if i didnt know the facts i would do some RESEARCH on the subject!!! i just wish people WOULD QUIT BEING SOOOOOOOOOO LAZY!!!!! if one doesnt know the particular laws in their own state, well then they are STUPID to purchase or try to add firearm parts to a weapon!!!!!!!! one more reason this country is sooooooooo F&^KED-UP, LAZYNESS!!!!!!!!!:cool:

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WHY do people make it OTHER peoples responsibility to see if certain items are legal or not, to purchase and assemble as well???? whatever happened to self reliance??? YOU know???, research something before YOU buy it!!! COME ON there IP, i can buy full auto trigger groups online for my ar15 but you dont see me buying them and making it the manufacturers responsibility to tell me NOT to put it on my AR!!! i KNOW ITS ILLEGAL and if i didnt know the facts i would do some RESEARCH on the subject!!! i just wish people WOULD QUIT BEING SOOOOOOOOOO LAZY!!!!! if one doesnt know the particular laws in their own state, well then they are STUPID to purchase or try to add firearm parts to a weapon!!!!!!!! one more reason this country is sooooooooo F&^KED-UP, LAZYNESS!!!!!!!!!:cool:

 

Skeeter no likey lazy! :D

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  • 3 weeks later...
WHY do people make it OTHER peoples responsibility to see if certain items are legal or not, to purchase and assemble as well???? whatever happened to self reliance???;) YOU know???, research something before YOU buy it!!! COME ON there IP, i can buy full auto trigger groups online for my ar15 but you dont see me buying them and making it the manufacturers responsibility to tell me NOT to put it on my AR!!! i KNOW ITS ILLEGAL and if i didnt know the facts i would do some RESEARCH on the subject!!! i just wish people WOULD QUIT BEING SOOOOOOOOOO LAZY!!!!! if one doesnt know the particular laws in their own state, well then they are STUPID to purchase or try to add firearm parts to a weapon!!!!!!!! one more reason this country is sooooooooo F&^KED-UP, LAZYNESS!!!!!!!!!:cool:

You read my mind concerning the ridiculous Question. I want to burn Jet Fuel in my 67 Ford Mustang. I should ask Ford if this is a stupid idea or not.

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