On June 15th, Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) signed HB 957 into law, which purports to disallow the enforcement of federal firearms law as applied to silencers or suppressors manufactured in Texas without the use of any parts imported from other states, and that remain within the borders of Texas. The American Suppressor Association is deeply grateful to the Texas Legislature and Gov. Abbott for their support of suppressor rights. However, we feel that it is important to note that, even after this law goes into effect on September 1, 2021, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) will continue to enforce federal laws with respect to these silencers and suppressors, which ATF insists still require registration under the National Firearms Act. This means that possession of an unregistered suppressor or silencer, even one manufactured in Texas, could lead to federal criminal prosecution.
ASA strongly supports many provisions of HB 957, especially Section 2 of the bill, which removes the state provision for criminal possession of a silencer. ASA also strongly supports the willingness of the Texas Legislature and Gov. Abbott to stand up for suppressor rights. That said, we consider it critical that our members know that possession of unregistered silencers or suppressors in Texas can still lead to federal criminal prosecution. There has already been at least one high-profile case in Kansas in which individuals have been prosecuted, convicted, and their convictions upheld on appeal for possessing unregistered suppressors while they claimed protection under a similar state law.
About The American Suppressor Association
The American Suppressor Association (ASA) is the unified voice of the suppressor industry. Our mission is to unite and advocate for the common interests of the suppressor community. To accomplish our mission, our principal initiatives focus on state lobbying, federal lobbying, public education, and industry outreach.