of the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau
All Firearms and Ammunition Excise Taxpayers
What is the purpose of this circular?
of this industry circular is to advise firearms and ammunition excise
taxpayers that effective January 24, 2003, a new Treasury agency,
the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, will be responsible
for administering the firearms and ammunition excise tax laws and
regulations currently administered by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco
and Firearms (ATF).
What is the
basis for this change?
25, 2002, President Bush signed into law the Homeland Security Act
of 2002. This law created a new Cabinet-level agency, the Department
of Homeland Security, by consolidating a number of existing Federal
agencies into this new department. Although ATF is not part of this
new department, the Homeland Security Act divides the functions
of ATF into two new agencies.
On January 24,
2003 (60 days after the Homeland Security Act became law), part
of the existing ATF will be transferred to the Department of Justice
as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
This new bureau will oversee firearms programs relating to the Gun
Control Act of 1968 (GCA), the National Firearms Act of 1934 (NFA),
and the Arms Export Control Act. The new bureau will also oversee
explosives and arson programs and administer the United States Criminal
Code concerning alcohol and tobacco smuggling and diversion.
On the same
day, a new bureau will be created within the Department of the Treasury
to handle the regulatory and taxation aspects of the alcohol and
tobacco industries. The new bureau will also administer the laws
and regulations governing firearms and ammunition excise tax. Again,
this new agency will be known as the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and
Trade Bureau (TTB).
What are the responsibilities for this new agency?
TTB will be
responsible for the administration and enforcement of the following
Revenue Code of 1986, 26 USC (IRC)
Chapter 51 (Distilled Spirits, Wines, and Beer)
Chapter 52 (Tobacco Products and Cigarette Papers and Tubes),
Sections 4181-4182 (Firearms and Ammunition Excise Taxes);
Administration Act, 27 USC (FAA Act), including the Alcohol Beverage
Labeling Act of 1988; and
Act, 27 USC section 122.
What effect will this have on firearms and ammunition excise
that this organizational change will have only minimal impact upon
firearms and ammunition excise taxpayers. Current ATF employees
who process tax returns and deposits, review claims, and perform
other duties supporting firearms and ammunition excise tax functions
will be assigned to the new TTB. As such, they will continue to
perform the same functions with TTB as they did with ATF.
however, be some exceptions. Effective January 24, 2003, all of
ATF's field inspection offices will transfer to the Department of
Justice as part of the new Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms
and Explosives (ATF). After January 24, 2003, you should send any
documents and special requests relating to firearms and ammunition
excise tax that you currently send to ATF's field inspection offices
to the TTB at the following address:
Firearms and Ammunition Excise Tax Unit
Room 8002, FOB, 550 Main Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202-3263
TTB is currently
working to establish its own field offices. Once established, we
will advise you of their locations and appropriate contact personnel.
will this have on the regulations?
will remain the same. However, the firearms and ammunition excise
tax regulations in Title 27 CFR will be administered by the TTB.
The remaining firearms regulations in Title 27 CFR relating to the
Arms Export Control Act (part 47), GCA (part 178), and NFA (part
179) will be recodified to parts 447, 478, and 479, respectively.
These regulations will be administered by the ATF in the Department
What government forms and tax returns should I use?
For the time
being, the TTB will continue to use the same ATF public use forms
that are currently in effect. Therefore, you may continue to submit
your claims, tax returns and deposits and similar documents on ATF
forms until we notify you that the form has been replaced by a TTB
any changes in my filing requirements?
are no changes to the filing requirements for firearms and ammunition
excise taxpayers. Therefore, you should continue sending these documents
to the National Revenue Center.
Will there be a website for the new TTB?
Yes. In order
to provide the public with information about firearms and ammunition
excise tax matters after January 24, 2003, you may visit the Alcohol
and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau website at www.ttb.gov.
You may also gain access by logging onto ATF's current website at www.atf.gov and using
the link to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau website.
Who can I
contact with questions?
The TTB hopes
to make this transfer of responsibilities as seamless as possible
for firearms and ammunition excise taxpayers. We also plan to keep
you advised of any significant developments as they occur. If, however,
you should have any questions about this transition and how it affects
you, feel free to contact the National Revenue Center at 1-800-398-2282.
Arthur J. Libertucci
Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB)