The GCA just got some new section numbers…and letters. Pursuant to the NICS Denial Notification Act of 2022, a new Section 925B, entitled “Reporting of background check denials to State authorities” is wedged into the GCA, right after the section about suing your State based on an erroneous NICS denial. If you didn’t know that was a thing, check out 18 U.S.C. § 925A.
So, what does the new section do? Add another step to your NICS check, it appears. Section 925B requires the U.S. Attorney General to notify local law enforcement (local to the FFL and local to the buyer) whenever a NICS denial is returned, including by reporting when, where, and why the denial occurred. This is something the AG (via the FBI) will take care of—you do not need to do this. However, to facilitate these new reports, the FBI will soon be requesting the buyer’s address as part of the NICS check…apparently only sometimes, and we’ll get to that.
Here’s the key fact: starting around September 26, 2022 (but by Oct. 1 at the latest), FFLs will be required to provide the buyer’s address to NICS as part of the background check process. You should use the complete address for the buyer, as listed on the 4473. FBI’s CJIS NICS Section put out an email blast to FFLs on Aug. 2, using the Law Enforcement Online Services email system (@leo.gov). It stated the FBI is hard at work modifying the processes you’ve grown accustomed to for NICS checks through both the Contracted Call Center (NCCC) and E-Check.
Interestingly, the email makes it sound like the transferee’s address will only be required in the case of a delay or denied status, but that the NICS response will only be given after the address is provided. Reading between the lines, it seems that if NICS is asking for an address, it’s not looking good for your buyer (or it’s just another delay status). A quick reminder, here: after Aug. 24, 2022, FFLs will be required to retain all 4473s that they “start,” regardless of NICS status. Click here if you missed our blog on the impacts of ATF’s Final Rule 2021R-05F.
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