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Taking firearms to france

Taking firearms to france

Old Jul 15th 2023, 3:41 pm
  #1  
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Default Taking firearms to france

Hi
I have a U.K. gun licence and would like the same in france to clay shoot on my own land.
I’m Told I just need to approach a gunsmith in france show U.K. licence and apply for a french one.

is this the case or do I have to also -
  • join a club
  • take a test
  • get a medical and get GP to sign this
Any advice would be great thanks .

Any advice, document or links to the official french stance on this would be great..
TIA

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Old Jul 16th 2023, 11:18 am
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

Originally Posted by Vikbe
Hi
I have a U.K. gun licence and would like the same in france to clay shoot on my own land.
I’m Told I just need to approach a gunsmith in france show U.K. licence and apply for a french one.

is this the case or do I have to also -
  • join a club
  • take a test
  • get a medical and get GP to sign this
Any advice would be great thanks .

Any advice, document or links to the official french stance on this would be great..
TIA
I'm sure you're aware that gun ownership regulation here is very restrictive.
Taking your 1st point, "I’m told I just need to approach a gunsmith in france, show U.K. licence and apply for a french one." No, I believe that wouldn't work. Any firearm here whether it be Cat.B1 or Cat.C (your shotgun) has to be officially recorded by a registered dealer if purchased from them or on-line by the owner.
The system was always rather complicated (less so for Cat.C hunters or clay shooters), but in 2022 the authorities issued new laws for a 'paperless' on-line system in an attempt to simplify ownership and registration. In fact its had the adverse affect. Very few (myself included) understood the new rules, and the on-line system had to be rapidly resolved by décret 2023-557 which I believe is current. Just 2 weeks ago I quizzed the secretary of our club on several points relating to renewal later this year of my own detention certificates. Needless to say even he was confused and suggested I wait another few months when the on-line system should become stable.
You say you have a UK licence, which implies you also own what you regulary use at your club or on your property. If that's the case the best advise I can offer is don't even attempt to bring it with you. Temporary importation is possibIe for those taking part in clay competitions, but there are a number of hoops to jump through to get the appropriate authorisation, including an official invitation to the planned event - these documents being checked at the port of exit and re-entry.
Based on experience the best advise I can offer is:
Purchase new or s/h in France from a registered dealer, who will steer you in the right directions regarding documentation. You will definitely require a medical certificate issued by a local practitioner who has to attest that he/she has detected no obvious psychological disorders. The certificate is downloaded from the Service-Public.fr site 'SIA Ministère de l'intérieur' where one has to create an account. I'm pretty sure that a general familiarisation test is still required (in French) which used to be issued by the club secretary and arbitrated by the director.
If you eventually get this sorted, please report back as it could be useful to others. Good luck!

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Old Jan 29th 2024, 2:48 pm
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

Perhaps the OP could update us with his progress, as I'm in exactly that boat and am interested in the solution. Thanks
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Old Jan 29th 2024, 4:36 pm
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

The OP hasn't been on since they first posted.
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Old Jan 29th 2024, 4:39 pm
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

OK - well thanks anyway.
I'm looking into having it sent over by courier, but that works out not too cheaply, as you can imagine.

Only other option is cheap flight there, cheap flight back same day with the customs advised.

I'll talk to them next...
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Old Jan 29th 2024, 8:08 pm
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

Originally Posted by Rhys1962
Perhaps the OP could update us with his progress, as I'm in exactly that boat and am interested in the solution. Thanks
Just for info I've never been a hunter, but in the past have been a member of a clay-pigeon shooting club which was a great experience.
What I can advise is, even if you have all the necessary licences in the UK, the French authorities don't recognise it. They only recognise a EU firearms permit (EFP) but GB residents who want to travel to the EU with their firearms or shotguns can no longer apply for a European Firearms Pass (EFP). Plus I believe that post Brexit it is no longer possible to use an existing EFP to travel to the EU with your firearm or shotgun.
One assumes that you are referring to Cat. C sporting guns. This means that to own and retain in France one requires either a hunting permit or a shooting license. A hunting permit is only obtained after successfully passing 2 exams. The theory exam has questions covering the knowledge of arms and ammunition, French wildlife, knowledge of different hunting techniques, and rules and laws concerning hunting policies and nature protection. There is also a practical exam, covering hunting simulation using blanks, shooting at targets depicting protected and non-protected species or animal, and also shooting at a moving target. Obviously a reasonable knowledge of French for both of these exams is essential.
If you are coming to France to reside here I emphasize what I have stated in the past: purchase new or s/h in France from a registered dealer, who will steer you in the right directions regarding ownership and documentation required.
Gun ownership has again been reviewed with legislation even more convoluted since 2023. I started preparing paperwork to renew all my licences in October last year then sent the 15 page dossier to the prefecture. I knew everything was in order, and then in Dec was requested to present myself to a (non local) gendarmerie for an interview. During that session all the details I had previously submitted were again duplicated and manualy fed onto the national firearm database which together with questions of a general nature took over an hour. I received all my updated certificates last week approx 12 weeks since orignally submitted. Proof indeed that the system has been significantly reinforced, and I guess rightly so.
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Old Jan 30th 2024, 7:22 am
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

Thanks Tweepipe - I think that’s the way I’m going to have to go. I’m already in the process of applying for a French licence and do hold a UK one, but the faff of bringing mine over does seem a step too far. Problem is the gun I have costs twice the price over here, so it’s money vs convenience…

Your point(s) around registered dealers is noted though, thanks.
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Old Feb 10th 2024, 12:20 am
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Default Re: Taking firearms to france

Interesting thread, something I had looked at. Transfer is not quite straightforward, (differing courier rules/customs each side) and cost is high so I agree sell in UK and buy again in France is the first option to look at. However. not sure how (if) you can actually (i.e. legally) hold a firearms license in both UK and France. Is it not a requirement in each respective country that you are legally resident there in order to be granted an FAC/SGC or Autorisation D'Aquisition? I would be delighted if this is not the case!

As you can only be 'resident' in one country (and of course it is whatever Home Office in UK or Prefecture in France define as being resident that matters) the only option I can see is to have a license where you are resident and use the relevant 'visitor permit' systems for the other country. Latter is of course designed for just temporary, ad-hoc visits for competitions etc. and does not really work if you really want to have firearms in each country.

Any advice or clarification would be appreciated.
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