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US Airsoft laws

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Under Federal Law, airsoft guns are not classified as firearms and are legal for all ages. This is also the case for the laws in each state. However, in some major cities and population centers the definition of a firearm within their respected ordinances includes propulsion by spring or compressed air, thus making Airsoft subject to applicable laws.A 6mm minimum orange tip must be present on the barrel end of the airsoft gun (or clear/transparent body) to identify it as such for any commercial sales. Once sold, local laws may vary on whether or not the orange tip must be kept. In many places no laws exist restricting one from removing or replacing the orange tip, but one should check the local laws before making such a modification.


Airsoft guns' trademarks must be removed where the manufacturer does not have an existing license agreement with the manufacturer of the real fire arm. For example: Classic Army has a licensing agreement with Armalite, so the trademarks can stay on imported replicas of ArmaLite's weapons. In practice, enforcement is hit or miss. You might get an "unlicensed" gun through customs with trademarks intact, while a licensed gun might be held in customs by an uninformed customs agent. House Resolution 607, sponsored in early 2007, would change this if passed, allowing imports to retain trademarks even if there is no agreement between the real firearms manufacturer and the replica manufacturer.


In addition, the similarity between genuine firearms and airsoft replicas is close enough to provoke interaction with local law enforcement personnel if an airsoft gun is carried openly in public. If someone were to, for example, attempt a robbery with an airsoft gun, they would be charged as if the airsoft gun were a real firearm.


NYC requires that all realistic toy or imitation firearms be made of clear or brightly colored plastics. Furthermore, New York City makes possession of any pistol or rifle or similar instrument in which the propelling force is a spring or air unlawful without a license. See New York City Administrative Code § 10-131(b) and New York City Administrative Code § 10-131(g)(1)(a).


Michigan allows the purchase of airsoft guns. However, they must have an orange tip on the barrel.Texas allows airsoft guns to be owned, but most cities require that the Airsoft guns be discharged only while outside city limits.


Some cities in Illinois consider shipping or distributing airsoft guns illegal. It is officially now legal to remove the orange tip of the airsoft gun.


In Minnesota, it is illegal for a child under the age of 14 to possess an airsoft gun unless under the supervision of a parent or adult. It is also illegal for any child under 18 to purchase an airsoft gun without parental permission. In Saint Paul and Minneapolis, airsoft guns cannot be carried in public unless they either have an orange tip, are clear or brightly colored. Airsoft guns also cannot be carried in public if they have a laser attached. It is legal to possess airsoft guns in these cities as long as they are transported in a closed and fastened gun case (in accordance with Minnesota firearm transportation laws) and unloaded. The vast majority of municipalities in Minnesota ban the firing of an airsoft gun within the city limits.


Arkansas has recently passed a bill that bans Airsoft guns. The bill states that these replicas constitute a severe danger to the health and safety of an individual due to Law Enforcement Officials being unable to determine whether a weapon is "real" or not. The bill does not ban imitation firearms (including airsoft guns) that are predominately coloured something other than black, brown, blue, silver or metallic, nor imitation firearms that are built of predominately transparent or translucent materials, allowing anyone to determine the contents of the firearm.

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