Importing paintball markers

The importation of paintball firearms (also known as paintball markers and skirmish paint guns) is controlled under the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 (the Regulations).

To import paintball markers (designed exclusively to fire paintballs) into Australia, importers must first obtain written certification from the police firearms or weapons registry in their State or Territory or written permission to import from the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department prior to importation.

Police certification

To import paintball markers, including single-shot, repeating-action, semi-automatic and fully automatic paintball markers, the police certification will be in the form of a B709A Importation of Firearms – Police Confirmation and Certification Form B709A Form.

Firearms dealers can also use a B709DA Form – Ongoing importation by Firearms Dealer Police Confirmation and details of the goods to clear the consignment.

The original B709A Form must be presented to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection at the time of importation.

Firearms Dealers can instead present a copy of their B709DA as well as make, model and serial number information at the time of importation.

You must also meet the additional requirements listed below.

Note: Police certification does not apply to paintball markers with the following characteristics:

  • that is substantially the same in appearance as a fully automatic firearm
  • a firearm to which a firearm accessory is attached or is integral.

To import these types of firearms, written permission to import must be obtained from the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department prior to their importation.

Permission to import may only be granted where the firearms are for specific purposes.

Attorney-General's Department permission to import

Written permission to import must be obtained from the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department where the importation of certain paintball markers is for one of the following purposes:

  • for the purposes of the government of the Commonwealth, or the government of a State or Territory or foreign government (official purposes)
  • for repairs, modification, testing and training (specified purposes)
  • for the purposes of a government contract, certain project or tender (specified purposes)
  • for use in the production of a film (specified purposes)
  • for the purposes of a sanctioned activity (specified purposes)
  • for the purposes of research or development by a known research or development importer for firearms or related defence and law enforcement products and the article is being imported is for the completion of a project or tender (specified purposes)
  • for goods to be exported, or that have already been exported, and are returning to Australia (returned goods)
  • in exceptional circumstances (public and national interest tests).

The Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department permission to import document must be presented to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection at the time of importation.

You must also fulfil the additional requirements listed below.

Ammunition

Paintball ammunition (known as paintballs) for use with paintball markers also requires police certification to be imported.

When being imported with the firearms, the ammunition can be listed on the same import document as the firearms.

See Importing ammunition, magazines and magazine extension devices for further information.

Additional requirements

Firearms are also subject to safety testing and unique serial number requirements.

Safety testing

All firearms being imported into Australia must undergo safety testing. Safety testing is performed by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

Safety testing requirements do not apply to a firearm that:

  • was manufactured before 1 January 1900
  • is designed or adapted for competition target shooting
  • was previously exported from Australia and the importer can produce the export permit
  • is being imported temporarily for a lawful competition or hunting activity
  • is being imported for official or specified purposes
  • has been deactivated.

Unique serial number

All firearms being imported into Australia must have a unique serial number unless they were manufactured before 1 January 1900.

Obtaining permission to import

To obtain permission to import in the form of a B709A and B709DA Form you will need to contact your State or Territory Police firearms and weapons registry.

To obtain permission to import from the Attorney-General’s Department, you will need to contact them directly.

Contact details of the police firearms and weapon registries and the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department are available at Firearms and weapons.

Penalties

The maximum penalty for importing these goods without the relevant import permission is a penalty not exceeding $450, 000, imprisonment for 10 years, or both.

Exporting paintball markers

Paintball Markers are not controlled on export out of Australia.