How to Purchase a Suppressor in Utah

Silencers, also known as suppressors, are popular firearm accessories that help reduce the noise and recoil that occurs when you fire a gun. 

If you live in Utah and are interested in purchasing a silencer, it is important to understand the legal requirements and procedures involved.

How To Purchase A Suppressor In Utah: Step-by-step instructions

Purchasing a suppressor in Utah requires compliance with state and federal regulations. Follow these step-by-step instructions to ensure a hassle-free and legal process:

  • Step 1: Understand the legal requirements Familiarize yourself with the federal regulations governed by the National Firearms Act (NFA) as well as Utah laws pertaining to suppressors. Make sure you meet the requirements, including age limits and qualifications to own a firearm.
  • Step 2: Choose a licensed dealer Find a licensed dealer in Utah who is authorized to sell NFA items, including suppressors. Find reputable dealers with a good reputation and knowledgeable staff.
  • Step 3: Choose a suppressor Research the different models and manufacturers of suppressors to find the one that fits your needs. Consider factors such as noise suppression ability, size, weight, mounting method, and compatibility with your firearm.
  • Step 4: Get the necessary paperwork Get the necessary paperwork from your dealer. This is usually Form 4 (application for transfer and registration of firearms with taxes) or Form 1 (application for manufacture and registration of firearms) if you plan to manufacture the suppressor yourself. Fill out the forms accurately and carefully.
  • Step 5: Apply and Pay the Fee Submit completed application forms to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) along with the appropriate fees. Make sure you enclose all required supporting documentation, such as two fingerprint cards and passport-size photos.
  • Step 6: Waiting for processing Once you have submitted your application, you will need to wait patiently for the ATF to process it. This process usually takes several months, so be prepared to have to wait.
  • Step 7: Background Check and Approval The ATF will conduct a thorough background check, including an FBI fingerprint check and an assessment of your criminal history, mental health and other disqualifying factors. Upon completion of the background check and approval of your application, ATF will issue a tax stamp authorizing possession of the suppressor.
  • Step 8: Arrange the transfer After receiving the approved tax stamp, contact the licensed dealer from whom you made your purchase. Schedule an appointment to complete the necessary paperwork and complete the transfer.
  • Step 9: Finalize the paperwork. Bring your tax stamp, ID card, and any additional requirements specified by the dealer with you during the meeting. The dealer will help you fill out ATF Form 4473 (firearms transaction record). In addition, the dealer will conduct a background check through the National Instant Background Check System (NICS).
  • Step 10: Obtain ownership of the suppressor. After all paperwork and background checks are complete, you can take possession of your suppressor. Make sure you understand how to properly use and store the suppressor, and follow any additional state or local regulations regarding its transportation and use.

By following these step-by-step instructions and being informed of the legal requirements, you can successfully purchase a suppressor in Utah while complying with state and federal regulations.

Are Suppressors Legal In Utah?

map of the U.S. showing where private ownership suppressors are allowed

Yes, suppressors (also known as silencers) are legal to own and use in Utah. In Utah, it is legal to possess, purchase and use suppressors as long as certain requirements are met.

In order to legally own a suppressor in Utah, you must adhere to the following rules:

  • Compliance with federal law: You must comply with all federal requirements to own a suppressor, including the provisions of the National Firearms Act (NFA). This includes filing with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), paying the required tax, and obtaining the appropriate federal permit before taking possession of the suppressor;
  • Background Checks and Permits: Before you purchase a suppressor, you must undergo a background check by a licensed firearms dealer. The dealer will file the necessary paperwork with the ATF, which will conduct the necessary investigation and issue a permit to transfer the suppressor;
  • Compliance with state regulations: While suppressors are legal in Utah, it is important to comply with all state laws regarding their use and possession. These laws can change over time, so it is important to be aware of current regulations.
  • It is worth noting that while suppressors are legal in Utah, they are generally regulated by federal law under the National Firearms Act. 

If you are considering purchasing a suppressor, it is recommended that you review Utah state laws and ATF regulations to ensure that you are in compliance with all applicable requirements.

Legal Use Of A Suppressor In Utah

In Utah, the legal use of a suppressor (also known as a silencer) is allowed under certain circumstances. Here are the basic provisions regarding the legal use of suppressors in Utah:

  • Possession and ownership: As mentioned earlier, suppressors are allowed to be owned and possessed in the state of Utah. To legally own a suppressor, you must comply with federal regulations and obtain the necessary permits and tax stamps from the ATF;
  • Hunting: The state of Utah permits the use of suppressors while hunting. The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) permits the use of suppressors to hunt game animals. However, specific hunting regulations must be followed, necessary licenses and permits must be obtained, and established hunting seasons and areas must be adhered to;
  • Target shooting and recreation: Utah law does not prohibit the use of suppressors for target shooting and recreational purposes. If you comply with federal regulations and any local ordinances or shooting regulations, you may use suppressors at shooting ranges or on private property where shooting is permitted;
  • Self-Defense: Although you can legally own and use suppressors in Utah, the use of a firearm with or without a suppressor for self-defense must comply with laws governing self-defense and the use of force. It is very important to familiarize yourself with Utah’s self-defense laws to understand your rights and responsibilities.

It is important to note that laws are subject to change, so it is always advisable to stay up-to-date on the most current provisions. In addition, there may be additional restrictions or regulations regarding the use of suppressors in certain areas or districts.

How old do you have to be to own a suppressor in Utah?

In Utah, the minimum age required to own a suppressor is 18 years old. This age limit applies to persons acquiring a suppressor by transfer from an immediate family member.

However, if you purchase a suppressor from a licensed dealer in Utah, the minimum age requirement is 21. This is consistent with federal regulations set forth by the National Firearms Act (NFA), which regulates the possession and transfer of suppressors within the United States.

It is important to note that while Utah law allows the possession of suppressors, people must still comply with all federal regulations and undergo the necessary background checks and paperwork to legally own a suppressor. It is always recommended that you consult with local firearms dealers or lawyers to ensure that you are fully aware of and in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations regarding suppressor ownership in Utah.

What is the tax stamp for SBR in Utah?

Firearm TypeTax Stamp Cost
Short-Barreled Rifle$200

In Utah, the cost of the Short Barrel Rifle (SBR) ownership tax stamp is $200. This tax is required by the federal government and must be paid when you apply to transfer and register your SBR under the provisions of the National Firearms Act (NFA). 

It is important to note that this table shows the tax stamp value specifically for SBRs, and it may be different for other NFA items such as suppressors or machine guns.

What disqualifies you from buying a gun in Utah?

There are certain disqualifications in the state of Utah that can prevent a person from purchasing a firearm. It is important to note that while I can provide general information, I am not a legal expert, and you should consult the relevant laws and regulations or seek legal advice for specific and up-to-date information. Nevertheless, here are some general restrictions for purchasing a gun in Utah:

  • Age: You must be at least 18 to purchase long guns (rifles and shotguns) and 21 to purchase handguns;
  • Criminal record: If you have been convicted of a felony, a serious felony usually punishable by more than one year in prison, you generally are not eligible to purchase or own firearms;
  • Domestic Violence Conviction: If you have been convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor or are subject to certain domestic violence restraining orders, you are generally prohibited from acquiring or possessing firearms;
  • Recognition of mental incapacity: If you have been declared mentally incompetent by a court or have been involuntarily committed to a mental institution, you may be prohibited from purchasing or possessing firearms;
  • Drug or Alcohol Abuse: If you are an illegal user or addict of any controlled substance or have been convicted of certain drug offenses, you may be prohibited from purchasing or possessing a firearm;
  • Restraining Orders: If you are subject to certain types of restraining or protective orders, you may be prohibited from purchasing or possessing firearms;
  • Other prohibited categories: There are additional prohibitions that may vary by state and federal law, such as if you are a fugitive from justice, have a dishonorable discharge from the military, are an undocumented immigrant, or have renounced U.S. citizenship.

It is important to familiarize yourself with Utah state and federal laws, such as the Gun Control Act of 1968, to get a complete understanding of firearms disqualifications in Utah.

In addition, licensed firearms dealers usually conduct background checks before selling firearms, which can help identify individuals who are ineligible to purchase firearms.

How Does A Suppressor Attach To My Handgun Or Rifle?

Suppressors are usually attached to pistols or rifles using special mounting systems designed for this purpose. The method of attachment may vary depending on the model of firearm and suppressor. Below are some common mounting systems:

  • Threaded barrels: Many pistols and rifles have threaded barrels specifically designed to mount suppressors. Threaded barrels are common in firearms loaded with pistol cartridges such as 9mm, .45 ACP or .40 S&W;
  • Quick attach/detach systems: Some suppressors are equipped with quick attach/detach systems which use locking mechanisms to securely attach the suppressor to the firearm. The suppressor is then locked onto the mounting device, allowing for quick and repetitive attachment and detachment;
  • Straight Thread: Some suppressors have a straight thread mounting method whereby the suppressor is screwed directly onto the barrel without the need for a separate muzzle device. The suppressor is screwed onto the barrel and tightened to lock it in place;
  • Piston/Booster Assembly: Some suppressors are designed for use with semi-automatic pistols and require a piston or booster to be installed. This assembly replaces the standard recoil spring and guide rod, allowing the suppressor to move with the reciprocating motion of the barrel when cycling. This ensures that the gun is reliably triggered when the suppressor is used.

It is important to note that not all firearms are rifled or ready to install a suppressor. In some cases, modifications or additional accessories may be required to install the suppressor. It is also very important to choose a suppressor that is compatible with the caliber and threads of your particular firearm.

Always refer to both firearm and suppressor manufacturer’s instructions to ensure proper mounting and compatibility. Also, be sure to follow all applicable laws and regulations regarding the use and attachment of the suppressor in your jurisdiction.

What’s the difference between a silencer and a suppressor?

The terms “silencer” and “suppressor” are often used interchangeably to refer to devices designed to reduce the noise and muzzle flash produced by firearms. However, there is a technical difference between the two terms:

  • Silencer: The term “silencer” was originally coined by Hiram Percy Maxim, inventor of the first commercially successful firearm noise reduction device in 1902. The term “silencer” implies that the device completely eliminates all sounds made by firearms. In reality, silencers do not make firearms completely silent. They greatly reduce noise and muzzle blast by slowing and cooling the expanding gases from the shot.
  • Suppressor: The term “suppressor” is more commonly used today by firearms enthusiasts and manufacturers. It is considered a more accurate description of the device’s function. A suppressor reduces or suppresses the noise and muzzle flash produced by a firearm, but does not completely silence them. The main purpose of a suppressor is to reduce the intensity and force of the sound, making gun shots less noticeable and reducing recoil.

In general, the term “suppressor” is preferred by many in the firearms community because it accurately reflects the function of the device and recognizes that it does not provide complete silence. However, legally, the term “silencer” is often used in various statutes and laws to refer to these devices.

It is worth noting that the use of the terms “silencer” and “suppressor” may vary depending on regional preferences and individual understanding. Ultimately, both terms are used to describe devices designed to reduce the noise and muzzle flash of firearms.


Purchasing a suppressor in Utah involves complying with federal and state regulations to ensure a legal and compliant process. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can confidently proceed with your suppressor purchase. 

Remember, compliance with all applicable laws and regulations is essential to enjoying the benefits of suppressor ownership while prioritizing safety and responsible firearms ownership.