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Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2015

Section 12 – Police permits

43.This section makes provision for police permits, which are distinct from air weapon certificates and are intended for use in transient situations where an individual may find themselves in possession of an air weapon, but grant of an air weapon certificate would not be appropriate (for example, where the executor of an estate takes possession of an air weapon when ingathering the deceased’s property). In this respect this section is intended to perform a similar function to that of section 7 of the 1968 Act, which allows the police to issue similar permits to allow the temporary possession of a firearm covered by section 1 or 2 of that Act. This section should be read in conjunction with the exemption at paragraph 8 of schedule 1 to the Act.

44.Subsection (1) sets out that the Chief Constable may issue a permit to allow an individual to possess or acquire an air weapon without holding an air weapon certificate, and/ or to sell an air weapon in the course of business (without being a Registered Firearms Dealer). These permissions may be applied or omitted from the permit at the Chief Constable’s discretion. Subsection (2) states that a police permit must not be granted to anyone prohibited from possessing firearms under section 21 of the 1968 Act, which is explained in more detail at paragraph 17 of these Notes.

45.Subsection (3) allows police permits to have variable durations, set at the discretion of the Chief Constable in each case but, as reflects the transient situation for which a permit is to cater, the duration of a permit is not intended to be of the order of that for an air weapon certificate.

46.Subsection (4) provides that applications for a police permit must comply with the requirements set out in regulations made under section 36 or the application will not be treated as having been made. The effect is that an application for a permit cannot be considered by the Chief Constable if the application processes set out in the regulations are not followed. Separately, section 35(3) has the effect that where an application is made in compliance with the application processes it still cannot be considered by the Chief Constable until the fee is paid.

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Explanatory Notes

Text created by the Scottish Government to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills.


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