Handgun purchases made easier by new Ohio law

Some 8,000 people in Scioto County have received Concealed-Carry permits since the Scioto County Sheriff’s Office began issuing them. Now, if your concealed handgun license was issued on or after March 23, 2015, and that permit has not expired under state law or been revoked, should you go to purchase a handgun, you will no longer need to be subject to additional background checks.

Attorney General Mike DeWine announced Wednesday that Ohioans who have a valid concealed handgun license have now had background checks sufficient to purchase firearms without the red tape of another background check.

“They changed that law a while back for us on the background checks where we have to do that NICS (National Instant Criminal),” Todd Miller, chief deputy of the Scioto County Sheriff’s Office, said. “It checks all the same stuff as what the gun stores were checking. It’s the same database. Back before March we weren’t hitting that specific database. We were hitting NCIC (National Crime Information Center), basically the criminal databases.”

The U.S. Department of Justice and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms have agreed to DeWine’s request for an exemption to the mandatory National Instant Criminal Background Check provided the Ohio concealed handgun license was issued on or after March 23, 2015, and that the permit has not expired under state law or been revoked.

“I’m pleased Ohio concealed carry license holders will not have to undergo additional background checks each time they want to buy a firearm,” DeWine said. “Ohio concealed carry license holders who are in good standing have already passed thorough state and federal background checks so there is no reason to force them to submit to additional checks if they want to buy a firearm.”

Ohio is the 25th state to receive a NICS exemption for its concealed handgun license holders

When someone wants to buy a firearm from a dealer with a Federal Firearms License, the dealer must first make sure the buyer is legally approved to make the purchase. After the buyer fills out Federal Form 4473, the dealer either calls in the information or submits it online so the BATFE can perform the required background check and issue the approval.

While this is typically called an “instant background check,” the Buckeye Firearms Association (BFA) says for many people it is anything but instant.

“Sometimes the system is down, or high demand overwhelms the system. Or maybe bad weather prevents government employees from showing up for work,” Jim Irvine, Board President of BFA, said. “For some unlucky people, they share a name with someone else who is not permitted to purchase firearms or errors in the database cause delays. Historically, this has not always been a user-friendly system. Now, Ohio gun owners finally have a solution.”

No additional background check required for people with handgun license

By Frank Lewis

[email protected]

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.

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