Firearms marking regulations coming into force June 1, 2017

Firearms markings regulations

Under the new firearms marking regulations, all firearms imported or manufactured after June 1, 2017 will be required to be marked with a stamp including year of importation and manufacturer name.


As of June 1, 2017, all the new firearms marking regulations will require that all firearms imported into or manufactured in Canada are marked. The regulation, however, does also provide exceptions to firearms of historical significance/rarity, high value firearms that would lose the value if visibly marked, and protected firearms. It will be a criminal offense to remove the markings, which include “CA” or “Canada”, year of importation, manufacturer name, and serial number.

The intent of the markings is to help police trace the origins of firearms used in the commission of an offense, and was an election campaign promise of the Liberal Party of Canada.


  •  (1) The following definitions apply in these Regulations.

    Act means the Firearms Act. (Loi)

    specially imported firearm means a firearm imported on a temporary basis by a business that holds a firearms licence, as a good under tariff item No. 9993.00.00 of the List of Tariff Provisions set out in the schedule to theCustoms Tariff. (arme à feu d’importation spéciale)

  • (2) In these Regulations, agency firearm, protected firearm, public agent and public service agency have the same meaning as in section 1 of the Public Agents Firearms Regulations.

  • (3) For greater certainty, in these Regulations, transfer means transfer as defined in subsection 84(1) of theCriminal Code.

Marking of Manufactured Firearms

 Every individual or business that manufactures a firearm shall ensure that the firearm is marked, at the time of manufacture, in accordance with section 4.

Marking of Imported Firearms

  •  (1) Every individual, business or public service agency that imports a firearm shall ensure that the firearm is marked in accordance with section 4 before the 60th day after its release as defined in subsection 2(1) of theCustoms Act or before transferring the firearm, whichever occurs first.

  • (2) Subsection (1) does not apply to

    • (a) a firearm imported by an individual under section 35 or 35.1 of the Act;

    • (b) a specially imported firearm;

    • (c) a protected firearm;

    • (d) a firearm that was initially exported from Canada by an individual or business if the individual or business retained ownership of the firearm while the firearm was outside Canada; or

    • (e) a firearm that was initially exported from Canada by a public service agency and that was retained by that agency as an agency firearm while the firearm was outside Canada.

Manner of Marking

  •  (1) The firearm shall be marked by permanently stamping or engraving on the firearms’s frame or receiver the word “Canada” or the letters “CA” and

    • (a) in the case of a manufactured firearm, the name of the manufacturer and the firearm’s serial number; and

    • (b) in the case of an imported firearm, the last two digits of the year of the importation.

  • (2) The markings shall

    • (a) be legible;

    • (b) have a depth of at least 0.076 mm and a height of at least 1.58 mm; and

    • (c) subject to subsection (3), be visible without the need to disassemble the firearm.

  • (3) In the case of an imported firearm, the Registrar, on application by the individual, business or public service agency that is importing it, shall grant the applicant an exemption from the requirement set out in paragraph (2)(c) if

    • (a) marking the firearm in a place that is visible only by disassembling the firearm is consistent with the current practices of the manufacturer of that model of firearm;

    • (b) the firearm does not provide a visible space suitable to stamp or engrave the markings;

    • (c) the firearm is rare;

    • (d) the firearm is of a value that is unusually high for that type of firearm and that value would be significantly reduced if the markings were visible without disassembly; or

    • (e) the firearm is imported by a business that holds a licence for the purpose of using the firearm in respect of motion picture, television, video or theatrical productions or in publishing activities.

Tampering with Markings

  •  (1) No person shall knowingly remove, alter, obliterate or deface a marking on a firearm.

  • (2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a public agent acting in the course of their duties or for the purposes of their employment.


Full text of the Regulations can be found here: