California’s Legal Definition of an “Assault Weapon”

For the purpose of configuring a “featureless” rifle here’s how the State of California defines an Assault Weapon. The four characteristics highlighted in red cover a majority of scenarios. No grenade launchers bud, sorry.

ARTICLE 1. General Provisions [30500 – 30530]
( Article 1 added by Stats. 2010, Ch. 711, Sec. 6. )
30515. 

(a) Notwithstanding Section 30510, “assault weapon” also means any of the following:

(1) A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that does not have a fixed magazine but has any one of the following:

  • (A) A pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon.
  • (B) A thumbhole stock.
  • (C) A folding or telescoping stock.
  • (D) A grenade launcher or flare launcher.
  • (E) A flash suppressor.
  • (F) A forward pistol grip.

Pistol Grip Defined

(d) “pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon” means a grip that allows for a pistol style grasp in which the web of the trigger hand (between the thumb and index finger) can be placed below the top of the exposed portion of the trigger while firing. Reference

Shown here is “The Liberal” grip by Featureless Arms (photo by AR15discounts) illustrating where this imaginary line exists and how this particular grip keeps the web of the trigger hand above the exposed portion of the trigger.

Important considerations

There are other moving parts (no pun intended) that come into play with the topic of legality. These talking points have been debated since the inception of featureless and are still debated today. We are not attorneys and this is not legal advice. It’s a reminder to understand the context of the law with the parts you choose and the decisions you make. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • How you interpret the law
  • How the manufacturer names or advertises the component
  • How the part actually functions in use
  • How you intend to use the part
  • How the court would interpret all of the above with the written law to determine whether or not you have broken the law

Click here for the COMPLETE Penal Code which also describes fixed magazine rifles and AR pistols.

Additional Resources

We try to keep it simple but we understand how hard it is to navigate around California gun laws. Here’s a collection of links you may find useful:

Attorneys at Law