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Old January 8, 2018, 10:50 AM   #1
TrueBlue711
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What could slow down tax stamp approval?

I read another post by a gentleman on this thread saying his suppressor tax stamp was approved after only 5 1/2 months. I got really anxious since I submitted mine around the same time as his, but still no word on mine. So I'm just curious if mine was held up for some reason or for "additional screening" or something.

So what could slow down a tax stamp approval? I'm sure any criminal history would do it, but I have no criminal history at all. Just 2 speeding tickets from high school/college days.
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Old January 8, 2018, 02:42 PM   #2
raimius
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Thousands of forms and a shortage of reviewers.
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Old January 8, 2018, 07:48 PM   #3
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individual or trust?
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Old January 8, 2018, 07:49 PM   #4
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Old January 9, 2018, 09:28 AM   #5
TrueBlue711
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individual
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Old January 9, 2018, 11:17 AM   #6
TXAZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrueBlue711 View Post

... So what could slow down a tax stamp approval? I'm sure any criminal history would do it, but I have no criminal history at all. Just 2 speeding tickets from high school/college days.
Easy. The limit on adolescent speeding tickets is 1.


Mine was a trust and took 13 months. (With a spotless background check. Really)
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Old January 9, 2018, 05:12 PM   #7
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You can call ATF and inquire
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Old January 9, 2018, 11:11 PM   #8
9x19
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First stamp?

If you are already in the system, that MIGHT make things quicker.

At one time certain regions had assigned inspectors and if one region had more submissions than the others that made it slower for folks in that high-traffic region. Not sure if the work-load is still divided that way.
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Old January 10, 2018, 09:24 AM   #9
TrueBlue711
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First stamp?
Yes. I sent two in as well: one for 30 cal and one rimfire.

Quote:
You can call ATF and inquire
Good idea! I didn't think about that. I'll give them a shout.
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Old January 12, 2018, 09:46 AM   #10
rep1954
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"What could slow down tax stamp approval?"

No return address.
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Old January 15, 2018, 07:54 AM   #11
Mobuck
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"If you are already in the system, that MIGHT make things quicker. "

Not in my experience.
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Old January 15, 2018, 06:53 PM   #12
Theohazard
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Originally Posted by 9x19
If you are already in the system, that MIGHT make things quicker.
No, each submission is a separate entity. There is nothing in the process that is made faster by having done it before.
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Old January 15, 2018, 07:00 PM   #13
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To answer the OP's question, there are three major influences on Form 4 (and Form 1) wait times:

1: Backlog.
Depending on how many total forms they have in their system compared to how many examiners they have on staff, the wait time will go up or down. My last two Form 4s were submitted within 2 months of each other, the first came back in 4 months and the second came back in over 7 months. And that went along with the trend I saw at the shop I where worked at the time. So in just 2 months the backlog went up by about 3 months.

2: Trust vs. individual.
I hear ATF is currently processing forms submitted as individuals faster than forms submitted as trusts.

3: Random chance.
Sometimes paperwork gets shuffled around and some examiners are better than others. At the high-volume NFA dealer where I used to work, I saw more than one Form 4 that was signed and approved way before we got it back. That means it was approved and then sat on someone's desk for sometimes up to two months for no apparent reason. This was relatively rare though, much more common was just a seemingly random approval time fluctuation among forms sent in at the exact same time. Two customers could each buy a silencer at the exact same time, and it wouldn't be unusual for one form to come back a month or two before the other.

There's no reason to worry and no reason to call them and waste their time. If they've cashed your check then your form is in the system. Now you just have to be patient and wait.
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Old Yesterday, 10:15 AM   #14
TrueBlue711
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Quote:
To answer the OP's question, there are three major influences on Form 4 (and Form 1) wait times:

1: Backlog.
Depending on how many total forms they have in their system compared to how many examiners they have on staff, the wait time will go up or down. My last two Form 4s were submitted within 2 months of each other, the first came back in 4 months and the second came back in over 7 months. And that went along with the trend I saw at the shop I where worked at the time. So in just 2 months the backlog went up by about 3 months.

2: Trust vs. individual.
I hear ATF is currently processing forms submitted as individuals faster than forms submitted as trusts.

3: Random chance.
Sometimes paperwork gets shuffled around and some examiners are better than others. At the high-volume NFA dealer where I used to work, I saw more than one Form 4 that was signed and approved way before we got it back. That means it was approved and then sat on someone's desk for sometimes up to two months for no apparent reason. This was relatively rare though, much more common was just a seemingly random approval time fluctuation among forms sent in at the exact same time. Two customers could each buy a silencer at the exact same time, and it wouldn't be unusual for one form to come back a month or two before the other.
4: Government shutdown (joke for current events haha)
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Old Yesterday, 10:30 AM   #15
Theohazard
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That may be a joke, but unfortunately it’s also the truth. As long as the government shutdown is going on, the ATF’s progress on forms will be paused (unless special stopgap funding is added for the NFA branch, which seems unlikely). And meanwhile, the backlog still grows.
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Old Yesterday, 10:51 AM   #16
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The biggest reason for the slowness is that it's a branch of the Federal Government. Government employees are not noted for speed or efficiency.
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Old Yesterday, 10:20 PM   #17
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shootbrownelk The biggest reason for the slowness is that it's a branch of the Federal Government. Government employees are not noted for speed or efficiency.
Not at all correct.
ATF NFA Branch employees are working their butts off. The "slowness" is mostly due to the volume of forms submitted.....with little change in staffing.
NFA Branch Examiners have been getting unlimited overtime to relieve the backlog.

The problem isn't the employees....it's the procedure. They are still in 1970's technologically.



Number of NFA Forms Processed by Fiscal Year:
2016 379,410
2015 308,563
2014 236,290
2013 163,691
2012 137,649
2011 105,373
2010 91,949
2009 86,753
2008 72,808
2007 66,560
2006 57,783
2005 41,579
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