Sunday, June 06, 2010

BATFE Revises Policies Regarding Firearms Transfers

I know that we often aren't so keen on the NRA, but I must admit that I do retain a membership. The NRA has done very important work in the past, and they continue to send informative "alerts" to current members regarding firearms-related legislation and rules. I recently received one of these "alerts" regarding the BATFE revising policies regarding firearms transfers. I have copy and pasted it below for your perusal. While this new policy seems like it will only affect people such as gun writers, my fear is two fold:

One, it may be open to interpretation and therefore start to effect other private citizens such as you and I.

Two, it is likely to reflect poorly upon the Democratic Party.

Read through the "alert" below (taken from the NRA's website) and let us know how you feel about about it.

BATFE Revises Policies on Firearms "Transfers"

Thursday, June 03, 2010

In a recent ruling regarding the “transfer” of firearms, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (BATFE) has reversed policies that have been in place for more than 40 years.

In the ruling, BATFE declared that a temporary shipment of a firearm by a federal firearms licensee to a non-employee for business reasons (such as a manufacturer's shipment to a gun writer or engineering consultant for a technical evaluation), will now be considered a “transfer” and require completion of a Form 4473 and background check.

This reverses a ruling issued in 1969, right after the passage of the Gun Control Act, although BATFE provided no explanation of the need for the change. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, BATFE hasn’t been able to name a single case in which a gun temporarily shipped under the old rule has been used in crime.

The short-term impact may be limited, because many major manufacturers already require firearms sent to non-employees to go through the transfer process. But manufacturers who didn’t follow that practice will now have to ship guns to licensed dealers to complete these “transfers.”

Furthermore, the ruling only applies to temporary shipments by federal firearms licensees to carry out those licensees' business operations. Given that limitation, the new ruling won't affect private individuals who ship guns to themselves when traveling to shoot or hunt, or who ship firearms to a manufacturer or gunsmith for repair or customization.

However, this new ruling may have broader implications for future issues. For example, some have suggested that although the ruling doesn’t relate directly to rental of guns for use on commercial shooting ranges, its reasoning might require rentals to be treated as “transfers” subject to recordkeeping and background check requirements.

Please rest assured that NRA-ILA is seeking clarification of the scope of this new ruling. If necessary, we will consider appropriate action to reverse any adverse impact on law-abiding gun owners.

No comments: