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Transferring firearm when NICS is down

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Ryanxia, Mar 26, 2020.

  1. Ryanxia

    Ryanxia Member

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    I was trying to confirm there is a stipulation in Federal law that says if the NICS system is down an FFL may transfer a firearm without using it but have not been able to find that law. Am I mistaken?

    We don't need to turn this into a morality debate of doing so, I just thought that was an actual part of the NICS package when it was implemented in 1998.

    Thanks in advance for any input.
     
  2. 1942bull
    • Contributing Member

    1942bull Contributing Member

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    Based upon what I have read in the past (years ago) the dealer can transfer the gun after 3 days. I found this statement in an article about gun right published in Guns Magazine.

    “In the event of a ‘crash,’ if a dealer is not notified that the transfer should be denied in three business days, the transfer may proceed,” NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action”

    I would double check that rather than rely on a writer’s research.
     
  3. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator Staff Member

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    A number of off topic posts have disappeared. The OP asked for information about the federal NICS under federal law -- not about alternate State background check systems.

    Please stay focused on the question.
     
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  4. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Member

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    I'm not aware of any such provision.
    And NICS has occasional outages, but that doesn't allow dealers to skip the requirements....you just have to wait until it's up and running again.
     
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  5. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Member

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    It's not "3 days", never has been. It's three business days, beginning the next business day. Meaning if you run the check on a Friday, it's "delayed", the first business day (normally) is Monday. The Brady Law does not prohibit the transfer of the firearm on that Thursday. "Does not prohibit" doesn't mean he has to, and some dealers choose to wait for a "proceed" response. If there are holidays, state offices are shut down for any reason, then that three days could stretch out for weeks..........what we are currently experiencing in Texas. FBI NICS will tell the dealer a specific date that he may transfer the firearm....currently that date is April 15th for Texas dealers.
     
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  6. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    Sometime you know, just sometimes it is worth it to just call the local ATF office. After all they are the Government and are there to help us.:)

    Seriously though, every ATF person I ever spoke to at Gun Shops. Pawn Shops and even on the phone were very nice and answered questions.Now they may have been just audit, book checkers I don't know. If they don't know the specific answer they will point you in the right direction.
    Not saying I like the whole BG check thing, but it is what it is.
     
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  7. herrwalther

    herrwalther Member

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    During high volume period the "three business day" rule can be longer. Delay on a Monday will mean transfer allowed on Friday etc. Here is an ATF PDF on generalities. Also, during the call a specific date is given on the phone for when the transfer may occur.
    https://www.atf.gov/file/61086/download

    The Brady law does not restrict transfers on delays with no response from NICS. However, some larger stores with locations in multiple states have a policy where they will only transfer on a NICS "proceed." I know Academy follows this policy based on the last time I got a delay there. Something to keep in mind if you experience an outage or delay at a larger store.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
  8. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Member

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    ATF can't help you with background checks or NICS because they have nothing to do with it. It's an FBI program:https://www.fbi.gov/services/cjis/nics
     
  9. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Member

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    Not at all true. Volume may increase wait time or status processing or to speak with an FBI NICS customer service rep or a NICS Examiner, but by law cannot increase the number of "business days".
    "Business days" are days in which state offices are open and does not include Saturdays, Sundays or holidays. "Volume period" has nothing to do with the disposition period.

    Yeah, ATF doesn't run FBI NICS and never has.:rofl: That link is outdated.



    If anyone wants current, valid information from FBI NICS they should visit https://www.fbi.gov/services/cjis/nics or read this quick reference guide from the FBI NICS: https://www.fbi.gov/file-repository/ffl-quick-reference-guide.pdf/view
     
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  10. Ryanxia

    Ryanxia Member

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    Thanks for everyone's input. It seems I may have been mistaken about this provision if the NICS is down having the legal option to proceed with the sale. The question more came up due to the pondering of the system going down for an extended period of time as a result of COVID-19.
     
  11. shoobe01

    shoobe01 Member

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    As far as I can tell, this is formally contentious. Previously everyone understood it to be 3 days. Now with their pandemic change in status the FBI is saying that always meant "3 days while the system is running" and... that's it as far as I know. Herr Walther's link implies this IS what they thought all along, but???

    To the best of my knowledge, no one has challenged it etc. so likely needs a lawyer to poke at the statute, maybe for him to ask a judge to clarify. I am not volunteering to pay for this :)
     
  12. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Member

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    Everyone who "understood it to be 3 days" was wrong.
    Which is sad because myself and many others have explained the actual delay period ad nauseum for decades......but some choose to believe it to be three days, five days, etc.


    Well, no. And as addressed on every FBI NICS thread on THR...... it's ALWAYS been "three business days beginning the next business day, not including Saturdays, Sundays, holidays or days that state offices are closed".

    The FBI has not changed anything in the way the disposition date is determined.
    The pandemic HAS affected some state offices.....and that may impact the disposition date for the FBI NICS.
     
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