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Old September 21, 2012, 08:06 PM   #3
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 9,681
Originally Posted by jasmith85
This may be a very dumb question but I rarely buy guns via a private sale and am hoping someone here can answer this for me. I'm thinking about buying a handgun from a guy I work with but I don't want to take any chances on the gun being stolen so I would like to get the gun transferred. My question is, in order to transfer a handgun do I have to have the last person a background check was ran on there to transfer it to me? The guy I'll be buying from bought it from someone else in a private sale so he is not the most recent person a background check was ran on for the gun. Does that matter or as long as its not flagged stolen can a gun be transferred no matter who is selling it?
I see you are in Tennessee, and I'm not, so I don't know just what "transferred" means to you. To me it means running the sale through an FFL, who will verify that the buyer is not a prohibited person and who will handle taking a Form 4473 for posterity. Really, all that accomplishes is to verify that you can legally buy the gun -- presumably, you already know that. I'm not sure how that would provide any additional security to you that the gun was not stolen 'X' number of owners ago. A background check on a buyer is a background check on the buyer, not a check on the firearm.

Unless Tennessee is very different from my state.

By the way, most police departments will not run a serial number check for you, because it's not in connection with an official investigation and, therefore, it's technically a violation for them to access any official database for you. Some departments or officers may do that for you, but they aren't supposed to (or so I've been told on more than two occasions).
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