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July 11, 2017

ATF Q&A: Firearms Transactions


Is a NICS background check valid for 30 days from when the check was initiated, or from when a "proceed" is issued?

The NICS check is valid for 30 calendar days from when the check was initiated.

EXAMPLE: A NICS check is initiated on March 21. The FFL receives a “proceed” response from NICS on March 23. The purchaser does not return to pick up the firearm until April 22. The FFL must conduct another NICS check before transferring the firearm to the purchaser.

EXAMPLE: A NICS check is initiated on March 21. The FFL receives a “delayed” response from NICS; no further response is received. The purchaser does not return to pick up the firearm until April 22. The FFL must conduct another NICS check before transferring the firearm to the purchaser. [27 CFR 478.102(c)]