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Non-residents Can't Buy Firearms?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Guns_and_Labs, Jun 15, 2005.

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  1. Guns_and_Labs

    Guns_and_Labs Member

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    I'm corresponding with a gunshop in Idaho -- they have a model I'm looking for -- and they are claiming it's a violation of federal law for them to sell me a firearm at their store, unless I'm a resident of Idaho. Is that right?

    My question to them:

    You had indicated that I could not purchase the firearm directly from you
    at your location if I was not an Idaho resident. I was trying to find the
    relevant statute, but can not find it. Is that an Idaho law?

    Their answer:

    No, that is Federal Law concerning Interstate Commerce of Firearms. You can
    only purchase a handgun in your state of residence. You can have it shipped
    to a FFL dealer in your state and you can ship it there and do the paperwork
    at that dealers location.
    Thanks,
     
  2. Frandy

    Frandy Member

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    That is correct. Federal law.
     
  3. Spreadfire Arms

    Spreadfire Arms Member

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    long guns can be sold to a non-resident of that state if their home state has not ruled that firearm to be illegal. for example, if the buyer wants to purchase an AR-15 but he has a California DL then you can't sell it to him.

    pistols/revolvers cannot be sold to a non-resident, nor can a Title II weapon.
     
  4. logical

    logical Member

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    I believe the long gun rule is residents and neighboring state residents only. I am in Michigan....for those of you who have heard of it and know where that is....so I think I can buy in Ohio, Indiana, maybe even Illinois, Wisconson, if borders out in the middle of lakes count. But not for instance Nebraska.

    Handgun is definately residents only.
     
  5. JB in SC

    JB in SC Member

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    Long guns if both states allow it.

    I would also advise you to be aware of other state and municipal laws concerning ownership of certain firearms. Being in CA, I suspect there might be quite a few restrictions.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2005
  6. Spreadfire Arms

    Spreadfire Arms Member

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    "I believe the long gun rule is residents and neighboring state residents only."

    read the ATF rule book..it used to be that but it has changed.
     
  7. Guns_and_Labs

    Guns_and_Labs Member

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    Yes, but my plan was to leave the firearm at my vacation place, not in California.

    So, it seems that California law follows me anywhere, effectively, and that I am, as a non-resident, not free to exercise the same rights to commerce as a resident. {sigh}

    Also, it seems like a nice, rare firearm is never to be in my collection. {sigh}
     
  8. Lennyjoe

    Lennyjoe Member

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    You can purchase it from him via phone/internet/mail and send him payment along with a copy of your local FFL dealer to which the seller must send the pistol to. It has to go to the FFL dealer only, not directly to you.

    Other than that, you can purchase it face to face in Idaho but cannot take posession of the pistol there. He must send it to an FFL in your home state to which you can then take posession of it after the transfer is completed.
     
  9. Spreadfire Arms

    Spreadfire Arms Member

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    Guns and Labs,

    if you have vacation property there you may be able to obtain an Idaho state issued ID card. arent you a resident of both states if you are a homeowner in both states?
     
  10. Guns_and_Labs

    Guns_and_Labs Member

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    Lamentably, my second home is in Montana, not Idaho.
     
  11. JB in SC

    JB in SC Member

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    Spreadfire Arms,

    You are correct, it has changed:

    A person may only buy a firearm within the person's own state, except that he or she may buy a rifle or shotgun, in person, at a licensee's premises in any state, provided the sale complies with state laws applicable in the state of sale and the state where the purchaser resides. [18 U. S. C 922( a)( 3) and (5), 922( b)( 3), 27 CFR 178.29]

    I was not aware of that change....it's a good thing :)

    Best,
    JB
     
  12. SIOP

    SIOP Member

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    No. You must actually RESIDE in the state you wish to purchase a handgun. Just owning property does not qualify. The state might issue you a card based on the fact you have an address there, but if you do not actually reside there it is a violation of federal law. The only people that can claim dual-residency for the purposes of purchasing a handgun in multiple states is an active-duty military person.
     
  13. EOD Guy

    EOD Guy Member

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    BATF disagrees with you. You can be a resident of more than one state for the purpose of purchasing firearms. I own property in Arizona and live there for 2 - 3 months out of the year. BATF says I can legally purchase handguns in Arizona when I am actually living there. I was also told that quick trips over the border do not qualify.

    Here is what they say on their web site. http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/faq2.htm#b13

    (B13) May a person who resides in one state and owns property in another state purchase a handgun in either state? [Back]

    If a person maintains a home in 2 states and resides in both states for certain periods of the year, he or she may, during the period of time the person actually resides in a particular state, purchase a handgun in that state. But simply owning property in another state does not qualify the person to purchase a handgun in that state.
     
  14. JB in SC

    JB in SC Member

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    A person does not have to be a full time resident of a state to qualify as a "resident".

    Per the ATF website:

    If a person maintains a home in 2 states and resides in both states for certain periods of the year, he or she may, during the period of time the person actually resides in a particular state, purchase a handgun in that state. But simply owning property in another state does not qualify the person to purchase a handgun in that state.

    Italics are mine.

    JB

    EOD sorry I was composing when you posted :)
     
  15. Guns_and_Labs

    Guns_and_Labs Member

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    Thank you EOD and JB, I now have my solution. I just need to get the Idaho dealer to hold the item until I am next in Montana, and then have it transferred.
     
  16. JB in SC

    JB in SC Member

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    I would thoroughly peruse the ATF website, just to be 100% certain that the purchase met all criteria. A photo ID is, I believe, a requirement for the 4473.

    I wish you success :)

    It is a crying shame that some states continue to harass gunowners with useless laws. In South Carolina the legislature (with little pressure) rescinded the "one handgun a month" law.

    It only took 25 years :eek:

    Best,
    JB
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2005
  17. Spreadfire Arms

    Spreadfire Arms Member

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    thanks for the education guys.....its nice to see threads like this that discuss ATF regs! :D
     
  18. geekWithA.45

    geekWithA.45 Moderator Emeritus

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    One kink on the out of state purchase of longarms: I've heard that some states put "adjoining states" laws into their books in parallel to the federal regs, and did not repeal them when the feds changed thiers.

    Since the transaction must be in accordance with the laws of both states in question, you _can_still_ run into adjoining state issues, as a matter of _state_ law.

    Does anyone know which states still has these legacy laws on the books?
     
  19. JB in SC

    JB in SC Member

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    Yes, there are states that still use "contiguous", "adjoining", or "bordering" in the statutes. My own state of SC has it in the statutes:

    SECTION 23-31-10. Purchase of rifle or shotgun in contiguous state.

    Any resident of this State including a corporation or other business entity maintaining a place of business in this State, who may lawfully purchase and receive delivery of a rifle or shotgun in this State, may purchase a rifle or shotgun in a contiguous state and transport or receive the same in this State; provided, that the sale meets the lawful requirements of each such state, meets all lawful requirements of any Federal statute, and is made by a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector.

    SECTION 23-31-20. Purchase of rifle or shotgun in this State by resident of any state.

    A resident of any state may purchase rifles and shotguns in this State if the resident conforms to applicable provisions of statutes and regulations of this State, the United States, and of the state in which the person resides.


    The old wording in the GCA was that both states had to specifically allow it, IIRC.

    One of the reasons to thoroughly investigate both states gun laws.
     
  20. Hawkmoon

    Hawkmoon Member

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    Are you certain? I don't recall ever showing a photo ID.

    However, with only two exceptions I have bought all my firearms through the same FFL and he obviously knows me. He might have asked me for a photo ID back when the first transaction was transacted. I'm pretty certain he hasn't asked for one since.
     
  21. Spreadfire Arms

    Spreadfire Arms Member

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    im reading the back of a 4473 now:

    "Box 18a: Type of Identification (e.g., driver's license or other valid government-issued photo identification)"

    that's pretty certain.
     
  22. HKrazy

    HKrazy Member

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    The BATF considers these laws to be outdated and irrelevant.

    FFL NEWSLETTER August 2004

    CONTIGUOUS STATE - PART 2
    In an article that appeared in the December 2002
    edition of the FFL Newsletter, we advised FFLs
    that the "contiguous state" provisions of the Gun
    Control Act were amended in 1986, and that the
    GCA allows dealers to sell or dispose of a long
    gun to a resident of another state provided, (1) the
    purchaser was not otherwise prohibited from
    receiving or possessing a firearm under the GCA,
    and (2) the sale, delivery and receipt fully comply
    with the legal conditions of sale in the buyer's and
    seller's States.
    The condition of sale relating to compliance with
    the applicable laws of both States cited above
    continues to cause confusion among dealers,
    particularly among those dealers who conduct
    business in a State whose laws presently contain
    language that allows "contiguous state" sales.
    Historically, prior to the 1986 amendments to the
    GCA, many States enacted provisions in their laws
    that allowed their residents to acquire a long gun in
    a contiguous State. For the most part, these State
    law provisions were modeled after the contiguous
    state provisions of the GCA. However, even
    though the GCA was amended in 1986 to allow
    the sale of long guns to residents of any State
    pursuant to the conditions cited above, many States
    have not yet amended their laws to reflect similar
    language. ATF takes the position that if the laws
    of a given State allow its residents to acquire a long
    gun in a contiguous State, those laws also allow its
    residents to acquire a long gun in any other State
    where the laws of that State permit such
    transactions, unless the language contained in that
    State's law expressly prohibits it residents from
    acquiring a firearm outside that State.
    Questions
    regarding particular State law provisions should be
    referred to your local ATF office.


    Link to ATF News Letters
     
  23. geekWithA.45

    geekWithA.45 Moderator Emeritus

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    That's really cool....but I wonder if the states are compelled to agree?

    Isn't that an example of the feds trespassing into state jurisdiction?

    It sounds to me like a state could prosecute, even if the feds do not, unless there's some sort of "affirmitive defense" against state laws elsewhere in the federal law.
     
  24. Shootcraps

    Shootcraps Member

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    The ATF doesn't have regs. These are Federal laws that they have to enforce. They're just trying to explain them. ;)
     
  25. JB in SC

    JB in SC Member

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    I've already contacted my Representative and Senator (both are friends of mine) to address this issue.

    However, I would not want to be a defendant in order to challenge the statute. Regardless of what the ATF says, I doubt seriously they have any control over the state statutes.
     
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