Originally Posted by MetalHead
There is no FFL required for sale of firearms between private parties in WA. unless the weapon is shipped then it has to be shipped to a FFL. ...
That's not correct- you can ship within the state of your residence even if transferring ownership. However, the mail or common carrier clerk you'll be dealing with will likely not know the law either and will insist that it goes to an FFL holder.
It's always a good idea to check out what the ATF says (and check with your own state) instead of taking advice from the internet.
Here's a quote from the ATF FAQ page:
(B8) May a nonlicensee ship a firearm by common or contract carrier? [Back]
A nonlicensee may ship a firearm by a common or contract carrier to a resident of his or her own State or to a licensee in any State. A common or contract carrier must be used to ship a handgun. In addition, Federal law requires that the carrier be notified that the shipment contains a firearm and prohibits common or contract carriers from requiring or causing any label to be placed on any package indicating that it contains a firearm.
There's some interesting stuff in there. You can ship a rifle to your buddy in another state without involving an FFL holder if you are just loaning the rifle. You can ship a firearm to yourself in care of a person in another state without using an FFL holder (an example is shipping the rifle you will use on a guided hunt to yourself in care of the hunting guide).
The problem is that most clerks at shipping locations don't know the law and will cause all manner of headaches. In real life it's often easier to use an FFL holder.