Shooting Buddy arrived down from "up north" yesterday so this morning we decided to attack the paperwork for the new rifles.
The forms have to be completed on-line and then you take them to the Post Office for them to be sent to Firearms Branch.
I logged into the online forms process on one of my computers and the form didn't display - not to be discouraged I woke up one of my other computers and tried again and this time it worked.
We decided to do Shooting Buddy's application first. The form is interactive, so depending on how you answer questions additional ones come up. I am sure there are questions on there that weren't on the form last time I did it, that or I've blanked it out of my mind! You have to answer questions about names / previous names / addresses / previous addresses (sure, list all previous addresses with dates!) / criminal convictions / medication / VROs etc, etc.
Once you get through these type of questions you actually get to the bit to do with the firearms. To be honest this bit was quite simple - as you require a Firearms Serviceability Certificate for each firearm which contains all the relevant details (make, model, serial number, calibre) you don't actually have to fill this in on the form - only the Serviceability Certificate Number (and attach it to your application).
I only ended up having to ring the Firearms Branch twice during the process. Once was regarding how to put the 'other licencee' information (i.e. my information) in and the other time was at the end of the process as the guy on the phone (blogged about here) had mentioned an additional form (Co-Users Permission Form) to me but the application process did not refer to this form at all. (Yes, you do need to submit it).
After filling in the six pages of information for Shooting Buddy we went to print it, which requires it to contact via the Internet to Firearms Branch and get a unique barcode - and for some reason this didn't work and we lost all of the entries and had to start again. Filling it in the second time was a bit quicker!
Validated and printed and then it was time to repeat the whole process for me.
No problems this time and once that paperwork was also printed and supporting documentation photocopied, we headed off down to the Post Office.
So for my application I had a five page printed form, a Firearms Serviceability Certificate for my firearm, a copy of Shooting Buddy's Firearms Serviceability Certificate, the Property Letter and the Co-Users Permission Form signed by Shooting Buddy.
Shooting Buddy's collection of paper was similar but he had a six page printed form as he had different answers to some of the questions than I did.
At the Post Office we had a short wait in the queue (apparently we were in the wrong queue but given that there was no signage showing two queues I didn't worry about that too much). Then the lady behind the counter had a look through my Firearms Application form and attachments (slight change from the last time I did this process where the initial response was "Do we process these?") and then she asked me for 100 points proof of identification. No where in the online forms or documentation do I recall reading that I needed to supply this, however, luckily I did have enough cards in my wallet to prove that yes, I am who I say I am. (Interestingly enough the "Working with Children" Card does not count (even though it has photo, address and signature and itself was obtained with a 100 points ID check). My Medicare card - First Name & Surname only - and Credit Card - full name only - were taken in preference.
Once she had scanned the form's barcode, entered the reference numbers off each of the identification cards, asked for $72.50 and printed me a receipt it was Shooting Buddy's turn. He was more organised than me and actually had his 100 points worth of cards out of his wallet.
That done she assured us that they would be scanned and then posted by registered mail to Firearms Branch for processing.
So Stage 2 is now complete. It will be interesting to see how long Stage 3 (Firearm's processing) takes. In the past I have not have any firearm approved in less than 90 days. I am hoping it will be quicker this time! Stay tuned.