Don’t pay GP firearms fees, BASC warns

BASC has reminded those applying for and renewing shotgun or firearm certificates that they do not have to pay fees demanded by their GP – despite reports of applicants being asked to do just that.

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Under government guidance, doctors must check the applicant’s medical record and inform the licensing authority of any medical facts relevant to the granting or renewal of a certificate, and place an encoded reminder on their patients’ medical records.

Doctors are not required to give an opinion on the suitability of the applicant for a certificate. A fee only becomes justified if the licensing authority requires further medical involvement beyond the initial response.

BASC has said it was disappointed by reports that some doctors are now demanding payment as part of the process. Should the doctor refuse to participate without money, the guidance states that, after 21 days, if there is no response from the doctor, it will be assumed that there are no medical issues.

Paul Dale, BASC firearms officer said: “After all the work that the representatives of all interests put into the agreement on medical involvement I am deeply disappointed that some doctors see the process as yet another chance to make money. Public safety should mean more to them than a fee.”

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