An Iowa Firearm Bill of Sale is not required for a gun sale between private parties. However, buyers and sellers may want to use a bill of sale to protect their legal rights and document the transfer.
- What Is an Iowa Firearm Bill of Sale?
- What Are the Requirements for Selling a Firearm in Iowa?
- Private Parties Selling Firearms in Iowa
- Documents Needed to Complete a Firearm Bill of Sale in Iowa
- Additional Iowa Firearm Laws
- Concealed and Open Carry Laws in Iowa
- Iowa Firearm Reciprocity
- How to Write a Firearm Bill of Sale in Iowa
- Iowa Firearm Bill of Sale Sample
What Is an Iowa Firearm Bill of Sale?
An Iowa Firearm Bill of Sale is a document a gun seller uses to document a sale with a buyer.
The bill of sale proves a valid transaction and change of ownership. It is an important form to minimize risk in a delicate transaction.
An Iowa firearm bill of sale is a receipt showing the transfer of ownership of a valuable item between two parties.
This document helps protect the parties’ legal rights if a dispute arises after the transaction.
What Are the Requirements for Selling a Firearm in Iowa?
Federal firearms licensees (FFLs) in Iowa must obtain federal licensing approval from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms to issue concealed carry permits and conduct background checks.
To purchase a firearm from an FFL, a buyer must meet one of the following three requirements:
- Pass a federal background check through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS)
- Possess an Iowa permit to acquire or carry
- Obtain an optional permit to acquire a handgun, accompanied by a criminal history check
Iowa has no state requirements for background checks by gun dealers and no conditions for selling long guns.
Private Parties Selling Firearms in Iowa
There are no restrictions on private sales or transfers of firearms between individuals in Iowa.
However, note that Iowa Code § 724.16 prohibits the transferring or loaning of a firearm (for temporary use during lawful activities) to anyone ineligible to possess a gun.
Additionally, it prohibits transferring or loaning a firearm to someone known or reasonably believed to be intoxicated or who is not permitted to receive or possess a gun.
Does the Law in Iowa Require a Firearm Bill of Sale?
Iowa does not require a bill of sale for firearm sales.
Gun Inheritance Laws in Iowa
Iowa prohibits individuals under 21 years of age (Iowa Code § 724.22) from owning handguns (pistol or revolver) and minors under 18 from owning long guns (rifle or shotgun) without the express consent of a parent or guardian.
There are exceptions for individuals working in law enforcement or military service.
Iowa law does not regulate the inheritance of firearms by minors. But the state does allow minors under 18 to possess or use rifles and shotguns under the direct supervision of an adult over 18.
Documents Needed to Complete a Firearm Bill of Sale in Iowa
Since a firearm bill of sale is not required in Iowa, no documentation is required.
Additional Iowa Firearm Laws
Iowa has a stringent “red flag” law requiring the subject of an ex parte restraining order to be notified that they may be required to immediately surrender all firearms upon issuing the final injunction.
A finding of domestic abuse or violence may result in further orders that prevent the subject from owning, shipping, transporting, or receiving firearm or ammunition (Iowa Code § 236.5(1)(b)(2)).
Who Cannot Purchase a Firearm in Iowa?
Iowa uses the federal baseline for those without purchasing or possessing firearms. According to Iowa Code § 724.8, guns may not be purchased by anyone:
- Under the age of 18 (rifles and shotguns) or 21 (pistols and revolvers)
- Convicted of a felony or adjudicated as a juvenile for a felonious offense
- Convicted of domestic violence
- Convicted of a serious or aggravated misdemeanor within the past three years
- Addicted to the use of alcohol
Does Iowa Have a Waiting Period for Gun Sales?
Iowa does not have a waiting period for any firearm sales.
Can You Buy a Firearm in Iowa Without Registering It?
Iowa does not require registration for any firearm.
Does a Firearm Bill of Sale Have to Be Notarized in Iowa?
Iowa does not require a bill of sale for firearm purchases.
But buyers and sellers of firearms, especially collector’s items or antique weapons, may want to create a bill of sale and have it notarized for their protection.
Is a Record of Firearms Sent to Police in Iowa?
Iowa has no laws requiring the retention of firearm sale records or background checks.
Concealed and Open Carry Laws in Iowa
Iowa does not prohibit the open carry of any firearm except in the state capitol building and grounds.
Any qualified Iowa resident over 21 may carry a firearm, openly or concealed (Iowa Code § 724.5), as long as the resident is permitted by state and federal law to carry and possess the firearm.
How to Apply to Carry a Firearm in Iowa
Iowa is a “shall-issue” state.
The state will permit any qualified individual to acquire or carry a handgun. A resident of Iowa is eligible if they:
- Are at least 18 years old for a professional permit (working in law enforcement) or 21 years old for a nonprofessional permit
- Have a clean criminal record
- Have not been the subject of a domestic violence restraining order
- Complete a handgun safety course as required
Iowa Firearm Reciprocity
Iowa recognizes all licenses issued by other states unless the holder is a resident of Iowa.
Iowa has concealed carry reciprocity with states that recognize Iowa concealed carry permits.
Currently, 35 states have reciprocity with Iowa:
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- Texas, Utah
- West Virginia
How to Write a Firearm Bill of Sale in Iowa
You can create your Iowa firearm bill of sale from scratch, but using a template like ours will help ensure you include all the essential information.
Either route you choose, here’s how to fill one out:
Step 1 – Fill In All Parties to the Sale
The bill of sale should include the identities of both parties, including each person’s:
- Address, including the business address if applicable
- Contact information (phone number and email)
- Driver’s license or ID number
Step 2 – Describe the Firearm(s) Being Sold
Include a detailed description of the firearm(s) being sold. The description should include the following details about each firearm:
- Serial number
- Make and model
- Accessories and customizations
- Present condition
Private sales are usually “as is,” but you can indicate any other terms on the bill of sale (for instance, if repairs are part of the exchange).
Step 3 – Add the Details of the Sale
Note the specifics of the transfer, including the:
- Date of purchase
- Sale price
- Payment agreement (paid in full, down payment, installment payments)
- Date of transfer, if it differs from the date of purchase
Step 4 – Sign the Document and Have It Notarized
Both parties should sign the bill of sale. If this document is used for court or other legal purposes, you may want to have it notarized.
Iowa does not require a bill of sale for firearms, but sellers and buyers should draw one up when completing an Iowa firearm transfer.
Our online template will let you create an Iowa firearm bill of sale whenever you wish to buy or sell a firearm in Iowa.
Iowa Firearm Bill of Sale Sample
Below is an example of what an Iowa firearm bill of sale looks like: