Armed Scholar

Efforts to Strike Down ATF's New Pistol Brace Rule

Video Highlights

  • The ATF's new rule on pistol braces is being challenged in multiple lawsuits.
  • The rule reclassifies many pistols with braces as SBRs, subject to restrictions.
  • The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued an injunction in the Mock V Garland case.
  • Multiple organizations and states have joined the Frac lawsuit against the ATF.
  • The Frac court in North Dakota has yet to issue a temporary injunction.
  • The ATF argues that the rule is a clarification, not an expansion.
  • The plaintiffs argue that the rule exceeds the ATF's statutory authority.
  • The ATF claims that the plaintiffs lack standing to sue.
  • The ATF's response has delayed the Frac court from issuing any relief.
  • The court is likely waiting for the fifth circuit's decision in the Mock case.

Video Summary

The ATF's new rule on pistol braces has sparked significant controversy and legal challenges. The rule reclassifies many pistols with braces as short-barreled rifles (SBRs), subjecting them to additional regulations and restrictions. Several lawsuits have been filed in response to this rule, aiming to strike it down and protect the rights of firearm owners.


One notable case is the Mock V Garland lawsuit, which resulted in an injunction granted by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The court clarified that the plaintiffs, including organizations like Maximum Defense and individuals, were granted an injunction in their favor. This decision has provided temporary relief for those involved in the case.


The Frac lawsuit, filed by the Farms Regulatory Accountability Coalition and joined by 25 states, is another significant legal challenge to the ATF's pistol brace rule. However, the Frac court in North Dakota has not yet issued a temporary injunction like the other courts. The plaintiffs in the Frac lawsuit have submitted the Mock order and clarification as additional support, urging the court to grant a similar injunction.


The ATF argues that their new rule is simply a clarification, not an expansion, of existing regulations. They contend that stabilizing braces have been used to circumvent laws regarding short-barreled rifles, and their rule aims to address this issue. The ATF also questions the standing of the plaintiffs, stating that they have not provided evidence of owning brace pistols or being denied tax stamps for SBRs.


The plaintiffs in the Frac lawsuit argue that the ATF's rule exceeds the agency's statutory authority. They claim that the National Firearms Act (NFA) and the Gun Control Act (GCA) do not regulate pistols and firearms with stabilizing braces. They believe that the ATF's rule is a final agency action that goes beyond the scope of the law.


The ATF's recent brief filed in the Frac lawsuit has potentially influenced the court's decision to withhold issuing an injunction. The ATF's response challenges the standing of the plaintiffs and questions the relevance of the Mock order in the Frac case. They argue that the Frac lawsuit seeks coverage for 25 states and their residents, which was not granted in a similar case in Texas.


The Frac court's hesitancy to issue an injunction may also be influenced by the ongoing proceedings in the Mock case. The fifth circuit recently held oral arguments in the pistol brace case, and the court's decision is eagerly awaited. Once the fifth circuit rules, it is expected that the other cases, including the Frac lawsuit, will be impacted, and the court will likely proceed more aggressively.


All eyes are now on the fifth circuit and the outcome of the Mock case. The decision in this case will have significant implications for the legal challenges to the ATF's pistol brace rule. In the meantime, firearm owners and supporters continue to monitor the developments and anticipate a resolution that upholds Second Amendment rights.


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