A Federal Court in New Orleans has ruled that the ATF’s ban on pistol braces may be illegal due to the fashion in which it was enacted. The New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court Of Appeals found that the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives finalized the ban in January without giving the public a meaningful chance to comment on it. This action (or lack thereof) invalidated the rule under the Federal Administrative Procedure Act. The Firearms Policy Coalition initiated the lawsuit against the ATF. This ruling is one of several that have been ruled against the ATF since the rule was enacted. The only problem that gun advocates may have is who the ruling will favor… the plaintiffs in the case or the nation as a whole.
Pistol braces were introduced to the general public back in 2012. Their purpose was to enable people with disabilities or other shortcomings to handle a pistol with one hand. These devices resemble stocks that are affixed to the back of rifles for the purposes of shouldering, but they are not necessarily designed for that purpose. An AR pistol featuring a pistol brace can, however, be shouldered. The Government even allowed this to happen.
However, the Biden Administration attempted to renege on the Government’s permission to shoulder pistols with the brace by redefining what a rifle is. Since the new definition of “rifle” included pistols with braces, that means that anyone with such a combination would be in possession of a short-barrelled rifle. This is illegal unless a person is able to procure a tax stamp from the Federal Government, which most owners of pistol braces probably will not do.