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Difference between gift-giver and straw purchase?

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by Sincere, Nov 20, 2012.

  1. Sincere

    Sincere Between Cascadia and Jefferson Active Member

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    Hello Friends,

    As Christmas approaches, a thought crossed my mind. If I wanted to buy a loved one a (new) firearm as a gift, would this be considered a strawman purchase?

    In my mind I can see how this could be construed as such: I am entering a store and buying a firearm with the express intent to deliver it to another person. On the other hand, I'm not purchasing it "for" another person; "for" implying that the other person gave me the money to buy a gun for them. In one way, the gun is "for" me to give to another person.

    This is purely a philosophical question. We all know that reality and pragmatism would dictate that this thought is really not an issue; too many loopholes.

    We all know that giving a gun as a gift is not illegal, so one point of minutiae that I'm curious about is if there is a length of time between purchase/ownership to gift-giving that would discount the idea of strawman purchases.

    Shoot away fellas.
     
  2. PhysicsGuy

    PhysicsGuy Corvallis, OR Resident Science Nut

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    If you are buying with your own money as a gift (as in they are not giving you anything to buy it), then it is truly a gift. However if they give you the money to buy the firearm, then it is a straw purchase, even if they are completely legal to own the firearm (and/or purchase it themselves). This can typically also be interpreted to them giving you good or services for the purchase. The legal issue applies to purchasing a firearm with a 4473 from/through a dealer. While the term strawman/straw purchase still is valid for private sales, I do not know the legality. As far as I know, I have not seen any laws against straw private party purchases.

    Just to clarify, the definition of straw purchase is to purchase goods or services for a 3rd party with their capital, and is not illegal in its own right (buying a computer as a strawman for example is completely legal). In the FFL world it is as stated above, purchasing a firearm for someone else with their capital, and is illegal.
     
  3. Boomerang

    Boomerang Portland area Active Member

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    http://www.atf.gov/publications/download/p/atf-p-5300-4.pdf (PDF warning)

    Go to page 165:

     
    Sincere and (deleted member) like this.
  4. Sincere

    Sincere Between Cascadia and Jefferson Active Member

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  5. Nwcid

    Nwcid Yakima and N of Spokane Well-Known Member

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    It is VERY simple. The answer you make on question 11a of the 4473, http://www.atf.gov/forms/download/atf-f-4473-1.pdf

    Question 11.a. Actual Transferee/Buyer: For purposes of this form, you are the actual transferee/buyer if you are purchasing the firearm for yourself or otherwise acquiring the firearm for yourself (e.g., redeeming the firearm from pawn/retrieving it from consignment, firearm raffle winner). You are also the actual transferee/buyer if you are legitimately purchasing the firearm as a gift for a third party. ACTUAL TRANSFEREE/BUYER EXAMPLES: Mr. Smith asks Mr. Jones to purchase a firearm for Mr. Smith. Mr. Smith gives Mr. Jones the money for the firearm. Mr. Jones is NOT THE ACTUAL TRANS- FEREE/BUYER of the firearm and must answer “NO” to question 11.a. The licensee may not transfer the firearm to Mr. Jones. However, if Mr. Brown goes to buy a firearm with his own money to give to Mr. Black as a present, Mr. Brown is the actual transferee/buyer of the firearm and should answer “YES” to question 11.a. However, you may not transfer a firearm to any person you know or have reasonable cause to believe is prohibited under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g), (n), or (x). Please note: EXCEPTION: If you are picking up a repaired firearm(s) for another person, you are not required to answer 11.a. and may proceed to question 11.b.

    Spelled out VERY clearly on the form you have to fill out to buy a gun from an FFL. If you are not buying from an FFL there is no question 11a so there can be no straw purchase in that case.
     
    mjbskwim and (deleted member) like this.
  6. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Leave it to Nwcid to be the legal beagle.
     
  7. netcarrier

    netcarrier Portland, Oregon Active Member

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    Hi Sincere,
    Your Title said it all "Gift"!
     
  8. teflon97239

    teflon97239 Portland, OR Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Nwcid and Boomerang. I did a word search in the ATF pub and didn't see a situation I'm contemplating...

    Can a parent transport and give a weapon to an adult child in another state?

    Any difference therein between rifle and handgun?

    I know we can probably go with a with a simple "indefinite loan." But it's always good to know the actual laws, too.
     
  9. Nwcid

    Nwcid Yakima and N of Spokane Well-Known Member

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    I have not heard a definitive answer on gifting across state lines. I do know that there is an exception for transfer from estates (after you are dead).

    There would be no difference between handgun or long gun in the situation you put forth. Basically either would require a FFL transfer and since it would be in the receivers state either are legal.

    Loaning your gun in the situation you put forth is 100% legal.

    http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/unlicensed-persons.html Parts 1, 2, and 3 are most relevant.