Burned by USPS

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Treestalker

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l recently sent a homemade blanket gun on approval to a gentleman in Ohio, via USPS, and insured it at the local P.O. for $200. Trader said my gun arrived and his merchandise was on the way. He then denounced my gun as a 'worthless piece of s..t', but did send what I had traded for. I had told him that upon receipt of his merch, that I would send a M.O. for it instead of my blanket gun. I did so and have heard nothing. I thought since I lost my gun on the trade, I might file for my $200, but since I don't know if it arrived in good shape, I can't prove a damn thing, except I now own an expensive (to me) .45 rifle barrel that is in good shape, but has a strange 3/4" deep unmentioned bore relief at the muzzle and no marks consistent with the stated maker. I doubt I'll do business with the USPS shipping unit again or with a certain Forum member in Ohio again. So much for USPS insurance or trades on the Forum, just saying. Glad I got what I did.
 
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JB67

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My local post office will not ship ANY guns period. I use UPS. I’m in Lancaster, Ohio. The UPS store will not ship them either. I go to the UPS hub.
Your local post office needs to read the regs. Long guns are perfectly legal. A local PO does not have a right to refuse a legal shipment.

Box it up well, tell NO ONE it's a firearm, and send it with tracking and delivery signature.
 

vintovka

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Find an attorney looking for a settlement. The Post Office is denying your rights and being prejudice.
 

VA Guy

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First of all, I'm not a lawyer, so everything I know could be completely wrong...

Here's what the USPS mail manual says about the "antique firearm exemption." It generally mirrors the definition used in 18 USC § 921, which is the definition we're all familiar with, with one twist:

Firearm means any device...but the term shall not include antique firearms (except antique firearms meeting the description of a handgun or of a firearm capable of being concealed on a person).
432 Mailability | Postal Explorer

I guess what separates "breaking a postal regulation" from "federal case" hinge upon the definition of "firearm" per 18 USC § 1715... the 18 USC § 921 definition is "for the purposes of [chapter 44]" while the postal law is chapter 83.

Basically, a lot of legalese and BS, without a lot of clarity. I personally wouldn't want to risk it given how muddy the waters are on this subject. Add in the fact that getting dragged through the system, even if found not guilty, can have far reaching financial, social, and professional consequences; at least to me, it wouldn't be worth it to press the issue, especially if there are other avenues (e.g. other carriers that can be used).

Again, I'm not a lawyer, this is just my perspective. I too was under the impression that at least for the purposes of mailing and shipping (and most other matters), BP/antique firearm, regardless of configuration = paperweight, but my research on the subject (including a lot of posts from here on past discussions on the subject) lead me to draw other conclusions.

Another thread from the past on the topic
 

rdane

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Your local post office needs to read the regs. Long guns are perfectly legal. A local PO does not have a right to refuse a legal shipment.

Box it up well, tell NO ONE it's a firearm, and send it with tracking and delivery signature.
Showed them the regs
. Filed complaint, nothing happened.
 
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The day is coming that nothing connected to the shooting sports will be able to be shipped bye anyone, and it is not too far off.
 
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For future reference....send all expensive packages REGISTERED ( red receipt ) mail. It costs a little more, but, every time it changes hands in the mail stream requires an employee signature. The last employee that signs off for it is responsible for its safekeeping until the next signature comes into play.

If it becomes lost, THAT last employee holding it will have to answer as to where it is...PERIOD!

I retired from the USPS. While at our office, a diamond dealer in my hometown got very expensive packages often in the mail. They were always sent registered. If the business was closed...I made a special trip BACK to the post office and handed that package BACK to the clerks and didn't move till THEY signed off on it.
Now relieved of that responsibility, I then proceeded back to the route to finish the day. If that package became lost...that clerk had to cough it up. I was no longer responsible for it. His signature was on it.
When I delivered registered items, I always checked ID's to ensure I was talking to the right customer. ...

NO ID, no delivery from me !!!!

I always HATED trying to deliver those type packages. I wasn't going to lost my job over missing expensive lost items sent registered mail on my watch.
For what this post is worth, that is your answer for expensive shipments.

Registered Mail only...nothing else.

__________________________________
Screen Shot 2021-02-16 at 12.58.58 AM.png
 

Loyalist Dave

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Basically, a lot of legalese and BS, without a lot of clarity. I personally wouldn't want to risk it given how muddy the waters are on this subject. Add in the fact that getting dragged through the system, even if found not guilty, can have far reaching financial, social, and professional consequences; at least to me, it wouldn't be worth it to press the issue, especially if there are other avenues (e.g. other carriers that can be used).
This is getting kind of ridiculous..., :doh:

OK so what you're concluding from your postings, but probably haven't realized, is that ALL of the companies that sell black powder guns, and thus MAIL black powder, cap-n-ball revolvers, and single shot pistols to buyers, not to mention long guns, are committing violations of Federal Law EVERY DAY, EVERY TIME they ship, IF the above applies?

Do you seriously think those companies have no legal counsel and would subject themselves to such penalties?

Do you think it's simply that the ATFE special agents are really slow, and simply haven't gotten around to enforcing the law?

PERHAPS you think that every single company ships UPS, and thus avoids breaking the law, although folks have pointed out in previous posts (myself included) that a lot of UPS shipping ends with UPS putting the item into the US Mail..., which would make UPS a violator?

OR are these companies somehow exempt from the regulation, although there is nothing in the wording to remotely suggest that in any of the wording that you cite, and for some reason Joe black powder shooter is the only person who is violation if they ship their antique revolver, albeit a repro, through the mail?

LD
 

Brent

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My local post office will not ship ANY guns period. I use UPS. I’m in Lancaster, Ohio. The UPS store will not ship them either. I go to the UPS hub.
It is not your local post office's call. They have to ship long guns if that's what you want to do. They do not have the option to say no. Local offices do not make policy. Period.
 

vintovka

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Once had a PO employee refuse to accept a longarm ML for shipment. I said nothing but whipped out the the phone and video'd whole thing. She was stupid enough to challenge me again right up until the post master came out. Package was immediately accepted for shipment. Oddly i have not seen the clerk in question since.
 
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fastburn

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My local post office will not ship ANY guns period. I use UPS. I’m in Lancaster, Ohio. The UPS store will not ship them either. I go to the UPS hub.
had the same problem with UPS , you have to go to the distribution hub the independent satellite stores wont do it, liability phobia, had no problem with that , i just tell them its gun parts, which is true!!!
 

kh54

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Thanks for this thread! I'm shipping a revolver today and already have it packed in a USPS box. I'll detour now to UPS.
 

Sgt Okie Homa

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Back in October I responded to an ad on this site and worked out a straight across trade deal. His 1861 Navy for my 1862 Pocket Police. He sent his gun USPS priority, paid the fee for insurance and I did the same. My gun got to him without issue. The gun he sent me got all the way here, got scanned out for delivery and disappeared. I had to wait 15 days to file a lost item claim, then I waited 60 days for a response and they told me I had to have an FFL to ship a firearm and they wanted to see my receipt. I replied with quotes from their own regulation telling them it was a black powder muzzle loader and sent them page cuts from three different companies showing what the gun was worth. Here's what they sent me today. Denied - now they say it's a C&R relic and I have to have a license for that and my ads weren't good enough, I have to show that I paid someone, something for it. What is wrong with these people. Even when you show them their own regulation they ignore it and come up with something else. I have a vintage WWII watch that is worth about $1k and was just in the process of packing it up to send it to a jeweler for cleaning and adjustment, what if it gets lost, how can I prove it's worth when it's something my father had in his pocket coming back from war? You can't call anyone, everything done on by mail or online. I have one more appeal but this was a straight across trade and even if I can convince them to actually read the regulations on muzzle loaders I've nothing to show that I paid for it. Their feigned (or deliberate) ignorance pisses me off. Wonder if I can file a small claims case against my local postmaster - it got scanned out of his building, put in the mail carriers vehicle and somehow between there and my house went missing. I'm out $300.


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Contact the USPS law enforcement division, file a police report of stolen/missing/lost property. Have the serial number so it can be entered NCIC. If they will not take the report, call your local law enforcement and file a report to include the serial number. Once it is in NCIC, it shows you as the legal owner. If it is ever found, it will be returned to you and the person who has it in possession will catch a felony.
 

Sgt Okie Homa

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Contact the USPS law enforcement division, file a police report of stolen/missing/lost property. Have the serial number so it can be entered NCIC. If they will not take the report, call your local law enforcement and file a report to include the serial number. Once it is in NCIC, it shows you as the legal owner. If it is ever found, it will be returned to you and the person who has it in possession will catch a felony.
 

Sam squanch

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Contact USPS law enforcement for sending a prohibited item!?! Sir, I’d just forget it. You will have admitted to sending said prohibited item, enjoy your fine and jail time! Not worth it. It sucks, but that’s how it is these days.
 

BP Addict

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This is all very interesting. I've been using the USPS to ship Muzzle Loaders sold on Gun Broker as UPS is $10 more expensive and slower.

A couple of years back I bought one from the same Auction. It wasn't packaged very well. There was a hole in the box and damage to the toe of the rifle. I put in a claim to USPS for the cost of repair as I didn't want to give them the whole gun. They promptly paid the claim.
 

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