There are a number of stringent rules surrounding who is allowed a licence to possess a firearm in NSW.
One of the requirements of owning a firearm is having a genuine reason to possess a weapon.
Other factors that will be taken into consideration if you apply for a firearms licence include your lifestyle, any criminal history, and whether you are considered to be a person of good character.
The NSW Police Force is responsible for issuing firearms licences and managing the firearms registry, and they have the authority to refuse or deny any application that they consider does not meet the requirements.
The control of vertebrate pests is considered a genuine reason to own a firearm, and providing you meet the other requirements as set out in the application to the Firearms Registry, you should be able to obtain a firearms licence.
What documentation will I need to provide?
In order to support your application for a firearms licence, you will be required to provide evidence that you are employed as a professional contract shooter to control vertebrate animals on rural land, as an officer or employee of a relevant government agency or as a primary producer who is participating in a pest eradication program for the purposes of disease control or the removal of large animals.
Relevant documentation can include:
- A copy of your tax assessment notice stating your occupation.
- A copy of contracts from clients who are employing you for your services, including payment details.
- A letter from a government agency stating that you are employed or authorised by them to control vertebrate pest animals.
- A certified copy of a trapper’s licence.
- If you are a primary producer, you will be required to provide Section 15 Certificate from the Livestock Health and Pest Authorities with the details of their pest control recommendations.
As well as documentation to support your genuine reason for owning a firearm, you will be required to meet other requirements before you can be issued with a firearms licence in NSW.
If you have never held a firearms licence before, you will be required to undergo an approved firearm safety and training course.
Once you have completed the training course, your certificate will need to be attached to your application for a firearms licence.
If you have previously been issued with a firearms licence for the same class of weapon, you may not need to undergo the safety training again.
To successfully obtain a firearms licence as a professional contract shooter, you will be required to prove that you are of good character.
There are certain types of behaviour, including being the subject of an AVO or having a history of violent offences, which may lead to the refusal of a firearms licence.
Other reasons you may have your application denied include a history of mental health issues, or being subject to a weapons or firearms prohibition order.
If you feel that your application has been denied unfairly, it is a good idea to seek legal advice from a criminal lawyer who is experienced in firearms licence cases, as you may be able to appeal the decision.