When Gun Store Closes


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12many
April 24, 2013, 02:23 PM
What happens to all the records, showing who bought what gun, that the gun stores keep when the gun store closes down or is sold?

Does ATF pick up the records?

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45_auto
April 24, 2013, 02:26 PM
They go to the ATF if the store goes out of business.

If the store is sold but maintains the same FFL (for example if it's a corporation) nothing at all happens to them.

If the store is sold but gets a new FFL, then the 4473's (the records) of the old FFL are sent to the ATF.

They must be maintained by the store for at least 20 years. After 20 years the store can destroy them.

CoRoMo
April 24, 2013, 02:32 PM
Licensees may dispose of 4473 forms that are 20+ years old. Licensees are required by law to keep all 4473's on file for at least 20 years.

Every licensee must maintain a 'bound book' that records, with few exceptions, every single acquisition and disposition of ever last firearm that transacted through their business. Every bound book eventually ends up in the hands of the ATF.

12many
April 24, 2013, 02:33 PM
Thanks.

Zoogster
April 24, 2013, 02:44 PM
They eventually end up with the ATF.


However the fact that private party transfers still exist in much of the country means a several year old record of a firearm purchase is not reliable.
Making it a poor registry.
It is also specifically outlawed under FOPA for them to create a database or registry.


This is why part of the anti-gun strategy is to require registration, or all transfers go through an FFL resulting in such.

Often combined with making it a crime to not report lost or stolen firearms within a few days.
This means all guns on file should be at specific locations, and if they were to go ask for them, it would be a crime for them to say they lost a firearm beyond the days allowed for mandatory reporting, and they are not going to believe someone just happened to lose a gun within a couple days of asking for it.
It would also be a crime for an owner to file a false police report reporting a gun lost or stolen that was not lost or stolen, and so if found to still own that gun guilty of that offense.

The result is intended to be a society where the location of all guns is known, and excuses from owners for not being able to account for them are a crime.
The purpose of which is to implement additional controls over those firearms. Whether confiscation gradually of specific types or models or actions, or new hoops to jump through to remain a lawful owner or default to unlawful. Or confiscation on an individual basis using a variety of tactics, like ever increasing numbers of prohibiting offenses that turn someone into a prohibited person (CA has legislation right now adding even more misdemeanors and minor offenses, and already has included many beyond federal law like simple assault.)

Bubba613
April 24, 2013, 02:52 PM
If the store is sold but maintains the same FFL (for example if it's a corporation) nothing at all happens to them.

THis is not correct. Any change of ownership requires a new license. Records associated with the old license are surrendered to ATF. 4473s and bound books over 20 years can be destroyed. Denied transactions over 5 years the same.

CoRoMo
April 24, 2013, 05:27 PM
...bound books over 20 years can be destroyed.
Hmmm. This contradicts what I was told recently... http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?p=8631492#post8631492
Dealer bound books must be retained forever and turned over to the ATF when the dealer goes out of business.
That you are both gun dealers and hold opposing knowledge of the law is not helpful. Maybe another dealer or two here can affirm one or the other. Otherwise the next IOI should be a great opportunity to find out for sure. And I wish I could find the answer in something other than Wikipedia...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Form_4473
The dealer also records all information from the Form 4473 into their "bound-book". A dealer must keep this on file at least 20 years and is required to surrender the log to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) upon retirement from the firearms business.

CoRoMo
April 24, 2013, 06:08 PM
http://www.atf.gov/files/publications/download/p/atf-p-5320-8/atf-p-5320-8-chapter-12.pdf

Section 12.7 Record retention period.

The regulations provided under the NFA, specifically 27 CFR 479.131, provide that the retention periods for required records shall be in conformity with the requirements specified under Part 478. As provided by Part 478:

...

(3) The A & D Records prepared by licensed dealers and licensed collectors over 20 years of age may be discarded.

There you have it.

Not surprising though, the ATF prefers that all records be retained despite the allowance to discard them after 20 years. :rolleyes:

12many
April 24, 2013, 06:17 PM
I am glad that the records are or can be destroyed after 20 years. This means that records of who owns what guns and who owns guns may only be around for 20 years. This makes creating a registry even more difficult and less reliable.

mrvco
April 24, 2013, 06:45 PM
Certainly less reliable... Sorry, I sold all my guns in private-party transactions :neener:

Zoogster
April 24, 2013, 06:56 PM
I am glad that the records are or can be destroyed after 20 years. This means that records of who owns what guns and who owns guns may only be around for 20 years. This makes creating a registry even more difficult and less reliable.


Not really.
There is also investigations that are likely over the many years.

Many FFLs that could destroy some records are also not in a hurry to do so. If they have been in business 25 years and change it is unlikely they will go back through thier records and clear out the 5 years they can, rather than simply keeping all records and turning them all in if they go out of business or transfer ownership. Not picking through them and removing the percentage they don't have to turn in anymore.


It is also not uncommon for someone holding an FFL for that many years to have some lapse or problem.
I have seen gun stores lose thier FFL for a month or so, and be unable to sell guns until they get something resolved. Presumably that means records went to the ATF?


So even out of the businesses that do last over 20 years I would venture a good percentage of them turn in more than required.

Beyond that many big retail stores keep computerized databases of customers. Over the years I would venture investigations of a couple customers here and there leads to the ATF gaining access to such things.

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