Biden Administration Introduces New Rules To Close 'Gun Show Loophole'

By Bill Galluccio

April 11, 2024

Assault Semi-automatic Shot guns and assault rifles, both semi and automatic
Photo: Roy Morsch / The Image Bank Unreleased / Getty Images

The Biden Administration announced that the Department of Justice has finalized new rules that close the so-called "gun show loophole" that allowed private sellers to sell firearms without conducting a background check.

Under previous rules, only sellers who made their livelihood selling firearms had to register with the federal government and obtain a Federal Firearms License. They are required to conduct a background check on the buyer when selling guns, whether at their own store or at a gun show.

The new rules, which were a product of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act passed in 2022, update the definition of who is considered a gun seller and must obtain a Federal Firearms License. Now, anybody who sells guns online, at flea markets, gun shows, or through the mail must register with the government and conduct a background check before conducting the sale.

The rules do exempt hobbyists who are selling guns from their personal collection and those who are trying to sell firearms they inherited.

"Under this regulation, it will not matter if guns are sold on the internet, at a gun show, or at a brick-and-mortar store: If you sell guns predominantly to earn a profit, you must be licensed, and you must conduct background checks," Attorney General Merrick Garland said. "This regulation is a historic step in the Justice Department's fight against gun violence. It will save lives."

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