Finding a gun online and buying it can be as easy as 1-2-3. However, there are a number of gun laws in effect in the United States that you should be aware of before you buy.
As citizens of this country, we rely on federal, state, and local gun laws to keep firearms out of the hands of dangerousäóîor potentially dangerousäóîpeople. Therefore, these laws are necessary, and many people believe there should be more laws in place.
Before you buy firearms online, consider these laws:
1. Age Restriction Gun Laws: Are You Old Enough to Buy a Firearm?
If youäó»re younger than the age required to purchase and own firearms, then itäó»s simply a waste of time to attempt to buy one online. You wonäó»t get your gun. But, itäó»s good to know how old you have to be to own certain types of gunsäóîfor example: if you are under the age of 18, then you cannot purchase a shotgun, rifle, or ammunition for either type of firearm. For every other type of firearm, you must be at least 21 years old to buy it and the ammunition for it.
2. Federal Gun Laws: Who Canäó»t Buy Firearms?
In the United States of America, it is considered our right, as American citizens, to own and operate firearms. However, dangerous people revoke that right and some people are simply not allowed to own firearms in the U.S. Here are the people who cannot purchase firearms legally in the United States of America:
People convicted of a crime punishable by more than 1 year in prison, or a misdemeanor punishable by more than 2 years in prison.
Fugitives from Justice: people who have open arrest warrants.
People who commit misdemeanor crimes or are convicted of domestic violence. This includes abusing a significant other or child. It does not include violence against a sibling, parent, or intimate partner who does not live with the person. This is referred to as the äóìboyfriend loopholeäó.
People who are addicted to a controlled substance. This is the 4th most common reason people are rejected by the federal background check.
People who have a protection or restraining order in place against them for domestic violence. Restraining orders remain in NICS temporarily.
People who are under indictment.
People with adjudicated mental health. People who have simply received a diagnosis of severe mental health are not disqualified from purchasing firearms. A judge must declare a person mentally unfit to possess a gun or involuntarily commit the person to a mental institution for the person to be disqualified from purchasing a firearm legally.
Illegal or Unlawful Aliens. A person does not need to be an American citizen to pass a background check. The FBI allows sales to foreigners who are legally in the United States. For instance, they must be permanent residents of the United States and meet the residency requirements.
Dishonorably Discharged From the Military.
Renounced Citizenship. Any person who formally renounces American citizenship renounces all rights and privileges associated with citizenship. This includes the 2nd Amendment, which is the right to own and operate a gun.
What Happens if People Who Canäó»t Buy Guns Attempt to Buy Guns?
When you buy a firearm online from an online gun store, your firearm will not be shipped to your front door. It will be shipped to a FFL dealer of your choice. Upon delivery, you will be called into the shop to complete the purchase of your firearm, which requires a background check and filling out of a Firearms Transaction Record, or Form 4473.
Lying about your criminal history on a Form 4473 is a felony and people who do this are subject to 5 years in prison.
NICS has blocked more than 600,000 people convicted of crimes from purchasing weapons since 1998. If purchasers are flagged as fugitives, then the FBI contacts the agencies that issued the arrest warrants seeing if the warrants are still open. If the warrants are ever still open, then this can result in arrests at gun stores and purchasers will not be allowed to purchase firearms or ammunition.
3. State Gun Laws
In addition to Federal Gun Laws, states have their own gun laws and itäó»s important for you to know which laws are in effect in the state you live in.
States also have their own additional categories of prohibited purchasers they report to NICS. For example, South Carolina denies the right to own a gun to any person known to abuse alcohol and several states prohibit firearms where alcohol is served.
Many states require firearms to be registered by gun owners; however, laws in some states, like Idaho and Alaska, prohibit authorities from registering firearms or enforcing local ordinance that regulates the registration of firearms.
Before you buy a firearm, you need to acknowledge specific laws for the state you live in and determine the following:
Which guns are allowed in your state
The maximum capacity for magazines allowed in your state
Licenses and permits required for which guns in your state
4. Local Gun Laws
Laws for firearms in the United States donäó»t stop at the federal and state level. Laws reach the local level, as well. Most of the laws in place by states reiterate federal laws, but the final say is usually handed down to the local level. Therefore, before you buy a firearm, check out the local laws in your area.
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