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I tried to buy a gun and was denied, but it WAS NOT cuz I failed the background check!

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July 16, 2012 in Guns


So about 1 month ago I went to a gun store on Industrial Boulevard in the Pennsylvania township of Upper Southampton to buy a gun since I don’t trust the government anymore (like many other Americans). I had a couple misdemeanors on my record, but NOTHING that would make it illegal for gun dealers to sell a gun to me. I even had the courtesy to ask the shop owner as soon as I walked in if having these crimes on my record would hurt my chances of getting a gun, and HE SAID NO!
Well, having waited 2 weeks for a reply and getting nothing, I decided to call the gun shop to get an update and they told me I was still on hold for a background check. They also told me that they ALWAYS call customers to tell them whether or not they passed the background check, and they also said that people have to opportunity to appeal if they get denied to right to buy a gun. I figured it would only be a matter of time before I got a gun, but I was sorely mistaken.
Earlier today I called the dealership again and said, “Sorry to bother ya again but I can’t help but be a little worried about the UN gun ban treaty that might get passed and I would like another update.” After being put on hold for 30 seconds the store owner picked up the phone. Boy was I in for a shocker! The manager was clearly not interested in talking to me as he was talking really quickly and in a disgruntled tone of voice. He said, “I have decided not to sell you the gun.” I asked him why, and he said he didn’t have to tell me and said his status as the store owner gives him the right to refuse to sell to me (and he actually admitted that the reason he wouldn’t sell to me was CUZ HE DIDN’T WANNA SELL TO ME and that the background check had nothing to do with his choice!) When I told him I wanted to appeal, he told me there is no appeal process. And then when I told him that a couple weeks earlier I was told I could appeal a denial, he told me that the guy who told me that was wrong.
I tried to fill out one of those NICS forms for gun denial appeal, but I realized I couldn’t when I noticed that the appeal paper required specific code numbers for my gun purchase (NICS TRANSACTION NUMBER (NTN) or STATE TRANSACTION NUMBER (STN)) which could only be obtained from the gun dealership who I tried to buy the gun from. I realized that the dealership would most certainly refuse to give me those numbers (after all, they refused to help me before), and then when I called the NICS office at the FBI to ask them how I was supposed to file an appeal if the dealership won’t give me the required NTN/STN number, the lady at the other end of the line said, “Sorry sir, but it is ultimately their business and they don’t have to sell to you if they don’t wanna.”
Clearly there is a conundrum here. What’s the point in having a gun appeal form if private gun dealerships can ultimately refuse to sell guns to customers even if the customers sue them? And as if that wasn’t odd enough, it also makes no sense that they would refuse to sell me a gun simply cuz they didn’t feel comfortable selling to me because GUN DEALERS JUST WANT YOUR MONEY! The idea that they would refuse to sell me a gun cuz they were suspicious of me is absurd because they just want my money, not to mention that even if I did do something evil with the gun they are not liable for anything I do.
I have filed a report with the Upper Southampton police about this, and they told me they would speak to the dealership about why they treated me the way they did. They also said they would get back to me, and I am crossing my fingers that they will keep their word. But in all seriousness, this is a perfect example of how absurd the law truly is. I can sue a dealership for refusing to sell to me, yet the dealership can ultimately refuse to sell to me anyway on the grounds that being a private dealership means they can deny to sell to anyone they want. And why would they refuse to sell to me? I have no criminal record which implies being ineligible to buy guns, I had the courtesy to simplify the process by asking if my crimes would hurt my chances to get a gun and they said it wouldn’t, and it’s common sense that a gun dealership would NEVER refuse to sell to someone that they can legally sell to cuz they just want your money.
I seriously think someone told the gun dealers not to sell to me. But who? And why would the gun dealers follow his/her orders? WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON HERE!?!?!

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26 responses to I tried to buy a gun and was denied, but it WAS NOT cuz I failed the background check!

  1. Never offer more information than you have to. If you like a particular gun just attempt to buy it. Don’t tell the shop owner your nervous of a gun ban or you want the firearm cause you don’t trust the government. Just be polite to the point. get in and get out. If you wanna bullshit about politics a gunshop is probably not the best place to do it.

  2. Dont give up get as many guns as possible and put them all over and dont forget the ammo lol

  3. You were not denied by the NCIS check (FBI), you were denied by the dealer, and therefore you have no grounds for appeal. Even if you only had misdemeanor convictions you would certainly still be placed on a hold (I believe it is for 5 days). After the 5 days, if the dealer hasn’t received a response, they can go ahead with the sell or of course they have the right to deny you for their own reasons. I know a guy who has never been in trouble in his life, yet he would be placed on a hold every time he tried to purchase. I would go to another shop, or purchase a firearm privately from an individual. If PA allows private transfers you would have to follow state and federal law, meaning you need to make sure the person you buy from is from the same state as you, over the age of 18, and not a felon trying to sell you the gun (federal law). I know here in Ky we have no gun laws or restrictions on purchasing a firearm from the guy on the corner, but I have no clue about PA law. If you need more information visit this website and find the PA forum: forum.opencarry.org.

    • Gun-dealer here, NICS background checks must be conducted within 3* business days or the dealer has the right to sell the firearm without the background check’s results. But, yes, as Brandan said, dealers are not only allowed to refuse sale, but infact ‘required’ by law (and morality, no doubt) to refuse sale if there is any indication that the customer is erratic in behavior, appears intoxicated, appears homicidal or suicidal, etc. I have denied sale to meth-heads who could barely hold the guns, their hands were shaking so badly, and drunks, of course, who flip out about being denied sale. The thing is, for whatever reason, someone at that store honestly had a feeling about you, no matter how off base their feeling may have been, they must not sell a gun to anyone they have hesitation about. Maybe you were jumpy that day or angry, or you just somehow came across as dangerous to the store clerk. Instead of being upset about it, you should not take it personally and appreciate them for choosing safety, no matter how misguided, over profits. Kudos to them. Go to another shop. :)

  4. next time do not ask too many questions, nor offer too much information, did you mention you did not have a lot of money too? just saying, you may have spooked the owner, you have to look at it from his side. as a gun shop owner he has to deal with the cops,fbi and the whole alphabet soap of agencies, state and federal, all the time. if he has some complaints or if he sold to some criminals before he could lose his business, being a gun dealer is one of the hardest and most controlled businesses to have and to open, when is the last time you saw a gun dealer opening a shop. almost unheard of these days. just go to another shop, you may find a better deal too.

  5. jay said on July 18, 2012

    First thing,don’t ever patronize that shop again.find a shop owner who wants to help people.I have a couple here in Ga that are friendly.It is appaling to hear about that shop owner acting like a douche.I have run into that before.Best thing to do is walk out and go to his competition and buy a gun down the street.

  6. A buddy of mine that worked for a gun shop that I frequent was telling me about how the feds got pissed at him because he sold a gun to an individual before the authorization came back for the sale. The guy was told he had to go threw a check and then a yay or nay would come back. It was one of those 3 day deals, and the word came back 14 days later, and by that time my friend had already sold the gun to the individual, because I guess there is a stipulation that if no word is returned by day number 7 the dealer can sell the arm to the party interested. I dont know the regs on this but this shop is still in business and when I get home I plan on buying a couple of guns from there.

  7. fanof2012 You were probably just unlucky enough to have dealt with a jerk who decided for whatever personal reason not to sell to you. As others have suggested you should try another shop or if at all possible try to find a private seller to buy from wich would be the smarter alternative.

  8. As a buyer, you are not obligated to “dress” nice or inform the seller of your life’s transgressions upfront. That is UNLESS you have had a previous felonious conviction, in which case you MAY NOT even come into the store to demo firearms as you pretty much lost your right to 2nd Amendment.

    If, on the other hand you have had only the misdemeanors, that would not bar you from entering the gun store and looking to secure the purchase of a firearm. At that time it is the FBI that decides whether you are approved or denied. It is also affected by how you filled out the form, which has a lot of tricky areas pointing to potential ineligibility. Again, it is the FBI instant check that confirms or denies you at that time.

    I agree with all previous posters suggesting that you need to seek another dealer and request that they perform an instant FBI telephone check while you wait.

  9. fanof2012, go to another dealer and start over. If NICS puts you on a delay it will be a 5 work-day period at best! In the event of a “DELAY,” the dealer receives a 5 day delay, for which

    • Excuse me, ….
      fanof2012, go to another dealer and start over. If NICS puts you on a delay it will be a 5 work-day period at best! In the event of a “DELAY,” the dealer receives a 5 day delay, for which the FBI looks harder at the name during that time. ……. If NICS has not replied during that five day wait, they can transfer the weapon at the dealers discretion. I know this because I have a FLL and I am a dealer. I can tell you that dealers have become very paranoid about the increase of sales. IMO, this is the perfect setup senario for the system. Don’t take it personal, move on to a better deal with a local that will find you what you want.

      • You mean you have an FFL*? Federal Firearms License, not an FLL. And, and are you sure that you are a legal firearm dealer, because NICS has 3* business days in the event of a delay, not 5.
        “FFLs must record any initial “proceed,” “delayed,” or “denied” response received, as well as any transaction number provided. If the initial NICS response was “delayed,” FFLs also must record the date a later “proceed” or “denied” response was received, or that no resolution was provided within 3 business days if they transfer the firearm after the 3 days. In addition, if an FFL receives a response from NICS after a firearm has been transferred, he or she must record this information.
        [27 CFR 478.124(c) (3) (iii)]” – http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/brady-law.html

  10. i think they may have misunderstood your intention in asking questions and being informed since most people who would normally buy weapons are there doing just that and not really asking questions other than what type of rounds they take and how much it costs. now that you know there is no problem passing the check try somewhere else, like its not your first day.

  11. Joe said on July 16, 2012

    Gun dealers have every right to be discriminatory when it comes to selling a firearm. The are empowered by the license they have to sell guns to responsible people. For some reason you rubbing the seller the wrong way and he/she used his/her right to refuse the sale. Go somewhere else and try again. I know people that have had this happen to them. Gun dealer didn’t like them and bingo, no sale….

  12. How many other gun shops have you tried to buy from? Did they all turn you down?

  13. Yep, you got boned man. Just find another gun store and go from there. Go in dressed as casual as you can though. Seriously, you might have to look like a douche-bag for a day or so. But act as normal as you can so they won’t get a “bad feeling” from you…

  14. The short answer is, The appeal process is for if you were denied by state or federal. If the owner of the store didn’t like you’re haircut….. There is no appeal.

    • Actually its only the FBI check that is run at the time of transaction, which takes place before or after the waiting period The waiting period varies from State to State.

  15. this is one area I disagree with Alex. You can talk till you die of exhaustion but the elite is never gonna change their plan. They are riding on the back of a tiger. There is no way off. If they get off they die. They have to keep on course. That leaves to only one solution. A physical altercation following the footsteps of the founding fathers. If we do win, I vote we ship all the liberals to russia so they can have all the socialism they want.

    • Doing that would just let them organize and cause a war with our future generations..don’t you think?

      • Is that what happen with the founding fathers? This Gahdhi style peaceful resistance may work if the country is united against a common enemy such as a foreign invader like the British empire. That commonality brought the hindus and muslims together. What commonality do we have in this country to peacefully unite against the enemy? We are divided in every way possible. man vs women, black vs white, straight vs gay, young vs old, dem vs rep, conservative vs liberal, socialism vs capitalism, rich vs poor, etc…

        • You’re *extremely* mistaken in the statement that “we are divided in every way possible.” Are you even proud of your country? That is what we have in common. We are bound by our ideals of freedom, our disgust for censorship (I may hate some of the BS on TV but, I’ll defend its right to exist!), and our incredible compassion for our fellow citizens in the event of crises, like Katrina, the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, the tornado in Joplin, and so on. Yeah, our leaders suck. But, as a population, we are pretty damn unique and inspiring. If you don’t see a link amongst us, open your eyes. We are not Sunni v. Shiite or Tutsi v. Hutu. We are so similar in that we are starkly different from other nations’ citizens. Our culture binds us, no matter how diverse it is, it’s OUR culture.

      • Naw, a war between the two nations would go nuclear. Numbers don’t really count then. Besides, after they drain each other dry, maybe they will get the idea that socialism doesn’t work.

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