Step 1: Complete MPD’s Application for Firearms Registration Certificate (PD-219).
- The form is available through DC FFLs, or through FRS. You can pick up a copy at the FRS office or contact FRS to request that a form be mailed to you.
- Fill out the “Purchaser/Owner’s Name” of the form. If you are buying a new gun, the SELLER of the gun will complete Section A of the form.
- The form must be signed by both the purchaser and seller in the presence of each other.
Step 2: Submit the completed PD-219 to FRS.
Bring the completed PD-219 to the FRS, along with:
The firearm, if appropriate.
- If you already own the firearm, bring the UNLOADED gun with you. If registering a semi-automatic firearm, do bring the empty accompanying magazine. Please note that it is illegal to possess a magazine that holds more than ten rounds of ammunition in the District of Columbia.
- If you are purchasing a firearm, the dealer cannot release the firearm to you until you have completed this process and return with a valid registration certificate, and until 10 days after the initial date of purchase.*
- Proof of residency in the District of Columbia (e.g., a valid DC operator’s permit, DC vehicle registration card, lease agreement for a residence in the District, the deed to your home, or other legal document showing DC residency).
Proof that you have met the District’s requirement for a firearms safety training course. This requirement can be met by producing:
- A certificate of completion for MPD’s online Firearms Safety Training Course. There is no cost for taking this course and it should take approximately 30 minutes to complete. It can be accessed from any computer at MPD’s website (www.mpdc.dc.gov/gunregistration). If you do not have access to a computer, you may use one at the office of the Firearms Registration Section.
- Evidence that you have received firearms training in the United States military.
- A license from another state which requires firearms training equal to that provided by MPD. Examples include, but are not limited to, a license or certificate for hunting or armed service as a special police officer.
- Evidence that you have otherwise completed a firearms training or safety course conducted by a firearms instructor that, as determined by the Chief, equal to that provided by the MPD.
Step 3: Certify, in writing, that you are not legally blind.**
Step 4: Take the Test
Take and pass a brief multiple-choice and true/false test based on information on DC’s firearms laws and regulations provided in this guide and the online training course. To pass, you must correctly answer at least 70 percent of the questions. The exam is designed to ensure that registrants are familiar with basic but essential information about firearms safety and laws. Applicants are allowed to refer to this guide while taking the test.
Step 5: Pay the appropriate fees (see chart below).
Step 6: Be fingerprinted for your background check.
*Under DC law, a firearms dealer cannot release a firearm to a purchaser until 10 days after the initial date of purchase. (D.C. Official Code §22-4508) Therefore, although MPD will process an application for registration in fewer than 10 days, the buyer cannot pick up the gun from the dealer until 10 days after initial purchase.
**Pursuant to D.C. Official Code § 7-1009(1), the term "blind person" means, and the term "blind" refers to, a person who is totally blind, has impaired vision of not more than 20/200 visual acuity in the beeye and for whom vision cannot be improved to better than 20/200, or who has loss of vision due wholly or in part to impairment of field vision or to other factors which affect the usefulness of vision to a like degree. Pursuant to DC Municipal Regulations §24-2310.5, if FRS determines there are reasonable grounds to believe that the certification is not accurate, FRS may require the applicant to obtain a certification from a licensed optometrist that the applicant meets the vision requirement.
The FRS will notify you once the application is approved (generally within one to five business days). You can pick up your registration certificate or request that it be mailed to you. If you are registering:
- A firearm that you already own, your registration process is complete.
- A firearm that you have just purchased, your registration process is complete, and you must bring your certificate to the dealer to retrieve the gun.
District Government Fee Schedule
- Total: $48
- Fingerprinting / FBI Background Check: $35
- Application: $13
Fees must be paid at the time of application, and can be paid only by cash or money order.
Money orders should be made payable to “DC Treasurer.”
In addition to the fees charged by the government, under federal law, anyone purchasing a handgun outside of the District will need to transfer the firearm through a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL). At the time of the printing of this guide, the current charge is $125 per firearm. Please check with the FFL to verify current charges.