Importing a Firearm to Canada: Classifications

If you are importing a firearm to Canada, be aware of the classifications (non-restricted, restricted, prohibited, antique firearms), and make sure that your firearm is legal for importation.

You will need proper and completed documentation for your firearm, and you must be able to prove that it is non-restricted, or meets the standard for a restricted firearm. For more information on Firearm Classifications, click here.

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Prohibited Firearms

  • Automatic firearms, whether or not they have been altered to fire in the manner of a semiautomatic firearm.
  • Handguns that have been adapted or designed to discharge a 25-calibre or 32-calibre cartridge.
  • Handguns with barrels that are less than or equal to 105 millimetres (4.14 inches) in length.
  • Firearms that have been adapted from rifles or shotguns (sawing, cutting, other alteration), which, after adaptation, are less than 660 millimetres (26 inches) in length, or have a barrel that is less than 457 millimetres (18.5 inches) in length.

Restricted Firearms:

  • Handguns (majority).
  • Firearms that have been adapted or designed to be fired when reduced by telescoping, folding or other means, to a length that is less than 660 millimetres (26 inches).
  • Semi-automatic rifles and shotguns that can discharge centre-fire ammunition, have barrels between a 105 millimetres and 470 millimetres in length (from 4.14 inches to 18.5 inches), and are not otherwise prohibited.

Non-Restricted Firearms:

  • Semi-automatic rifles and shotguns. The barrels must be at least 470 millimetres (18.5 inches) in length, and they must not otherwise fall into a prohibited or restricted category.
  • Single shot or manual repeating rifles (any length). They may not be adapted or designed to be fired when reduced by telescoping, folding or other means, to a length that is less than 660 millimetres (26 inches).

Antique Firearms under the Criminal Code:

Under the Criminal Code, antique firearms are defined as:
  1. A firearm that was manufactured prior to 1898 and was not designed to discharge center-fire or rim-fire ammunition, and that has not been redesigned to discharge center-fire or rim-fire ammunition.
  2. Any long guns that were manufactured prior to 1898, or guns that were manufactured later and have flintlock, wheellock or matchlock firearms reproductions.
  3. Any firearm that, by authoritative decision, has been prescribed as an antique firearm.

If you are a visitor to, or resident of Canada, you may import an antique firearm. An antique firearm does not need to be registered, and the owner of this type of firearm does not need a license. However, the firearm must still be safely transported and stored as required.


Thinking of importing firearms or other goods to Canada? Sign up for and get full access to “The Guide.” Read “Visas & Immigration” and “Formalities on Arrival”  chapters for more information on this topic.


Here’s more on firearms and hunting in Canada:


About Dobromir

Relocating to Canada was a difficult decision that turned out to be exactly what I was looking for. It’s important for me to find a work-life balance that satisfies my professional ambitions, my family life and my personal interests. Here in the cities of Canada, we work hard, but a trip to the ski slope with the kids, or a night of excellent dining and a theater production is never out of reach. At, we can help all your moving formalities (like planning your finances and finding the perfect home) run smoother, so you can begin to enjoy your new city even faster. // Se relocaliser au Canada a été une décision difficile mais qui s’est avérée être exactement ce que je recherchais. C’est important pour moi de trouver un équilibre entre travail/ vie personnelle qui puisse satisfaire mes ambitions professionnelles, ma vie familiale et mes intérêts personnels. Ici, dans les villes du Canada, nous travaillons dur mais un petit tour sur les pistes de ski avec les enfants ou une soirée avec un bon repas puis une pièce de théâtre ne sont jamais hors de portée. A, nous pouvons vous aider à faire toutes vos formalités de déménagement ( comme la planification de vos finances et trouver la maison idéale ) tout en douceur afin que vous puissiez commencer à profiter de votre nouvelle ville encore plus rapidement.