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Federal denials resulting from background checks done by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) in the United States from 1998 to 2018

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Reasons for firearm purchase denial following an NICS background check 2018 This statistic shows the total number of federal denials following a background check done by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) in the United States from 1998 to 2018. The NICS background checks are used by Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to instantly determine whether a prospective buyer is eligible to buy firearms or explosives. As of April 2018, a total of 181,282 background checks have led to a Federal denial because the buyer was a fugitive from justice.
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Reason for denialNumber of denials
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Description Source More information
This statistic shows the total number of federal denials following a background check done by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) in the United States from 1998 to 2018. The NICS background checks are used by Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to instantly determine whether a prospective buyer is eligible to buy firearms or explosives. As of April 2018, a total of 181,282 background checks have led to a Federal denial because the buyer was a fugitive from justice.
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Release date
April 2018
Region
United States
Survey time period
November 30, 1998 to April 30, 2018
Supplementary notes
NICS is used by Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to instantly determine whether a prospective buyer is eligible to buy firearms or explosives. Before ringing up the sale, cashiers call in a check to the FBI or to other designated agencies to ensure that each customer does not have a criminal record or isn’t otherwise ineligible to make a purchase.

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