NH firearms license

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
That's not true. The law says it's legal "as long as he or she does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the person is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under Federal law." It doesn't place an affirmative duty to know, or to find out. If I don't have actual knowledge that you're prohibited, or have reason to believe it, I'm good to go in the law's eyes.
Let's run through this just to be clear.
You're selling a gun, maybe even listed here.
You get a buyer who you have no knowledge of.
You meet in a parking lot where he tells you his name is John Smith and he's OK, not a felon.
You sell him the gun.
Six months later he's caught committing a crime with the gun in his possession, and Oh he does have a record.
In exchange for a lesser sentence he gives you up as the source of the gun.

Now the law clearly puts the burden on the seller.
" 159:7 Sales to Felons. – No person shall sell, deliver, or otherwise transfer a pistol, revolver or any other firearm, to a person who has been convicted, in any jurisdiction, of a felony. Whoever violates the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a class B felony."

And the exception to this:
" 159:14 Exemption. – None of the provisions of this chapter shall prohibit an individual not licensed under the provisions thereof who is not engaged in the business of selling pistols or revolvers from selling a pistol or revolver to a person licensed under this chapter or to a person personally known to him."

159:7 has nothing about knowledge of the buyers status or the intent of the seller. Only the fact that it occured.
159:14 offers the exception to this by allowing the buyer to be personally known to the seller as sufficient evidence that the seller had reasonable proof that the buyer wasn't prohibited. This is an exception or defence to 159:7
I don't have the reference, but I do know it's been established that the buyer having a P&R is also considered sufficient evidence that the buyer is not prohibited.

Now if you want to stand up in court and testify that you personally knew the convicted felon and believed he was not prohibited, and you only just met him, well go for it and enjoy your stay.
Keep in mind that the very person you are claiming to "personally" know is also testifying that he only just met you, and has no idea who the F you are.

Fortunately I don't even have to win this argument, if I inadvertently sell to a felon, well I've got the P&R to backup my position so I'm not even going to spend a day in court.
On the other hand, if it happens to you without the proof, you will spend many days in court, racking up all those legal fees, and you'll probably get convicted. But even if you aren't convicted, you'll be out the 10-20K in legal fees.

Good luck.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
How do you prove that he showed you a P&R? Do you take a picture of his P&R? I imagine a lot of folks wouldn't be cool with that.
there is a number on it, no different than a MA LTC
 

Bt74

NES Member
Rating - 100%
23   0   0
Joined
Dec 12, 2010
Messages
4,805
Likes
5,145
Location
NH
That's not true. The law says it's legal "as long as he or she does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the person is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under Federal law." It doesn't place an affirmative duty to know, or to find out. If I don't have actual knowledge that you're prohibited, or have reason to believe it, I'm good to go in the law's eyes.
Tell THAT to a judge in a civil action!
 

67ray

NES Member
Rating - 100%
280   0   0
Joined
Feb 27, 2006
Messages
3,728
Likes
4,807
I am new to NH and have been looking at joining a sportsmen club near me. Don't know if this has been mentioned, but some clubs require license as a means of having a criminal background check performed on you as a membership pre-requisite. FWIW.

If I found a club that required a background check, I would keep looking.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
That's not true. The law says it's legal "as long as he or she does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the person is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under Federal law." It doesn't place an affirmative duty to know, or to find out. If I don't have actual knowledge that you're prohibited, or have reason to believe it, I'm good to go in the law's eyes.
The law doesn't actually say that, so you may want to site where you got that quote from. Otherwise it's just you.
" 159:7 Sales to Felons. – No person shall sell, deliver, or otherwise transfer a pistol, revolver or any other firearm, to a person who has been convicted, in any jurisdiction, of a felony. Whoever violates the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a class B felony."
" 159:14 Exemption. – None of the provisions of this chapter shall prohibit an individual not licensed under the provisions thereof who is not engaged in the business of selling pistols or revolvers from selling a pistol or revolver to a person licensed under this chapter or to a person personally known to him."

So you write down the number and keep track of it?
Sure, when you sell a gun don't you record who you sold it to? Just like if I sold you a car or a couch, there would be a bill of sale. And if you don't know them personally you note the P&R number. Having to record someone's P&R number is pretty far down the list of things I'm willing to ruin my life over. Don't like it, don't buy the gun.




ScottS said:
That's not true. The law says it's legal "as long as he or she does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the person is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under Federal law." It doesn't place an affirmative duty to know, or to find out. If I don't have actual knowledge that you're prohibited, or have reason to believe it, I'm good to go in the law's eyes.

Tell THAT to a judge in a civil action!
You can't sue a Judge for decisions of the court.
 

GunCat

NES Member
Rating - 100%
1   0   0
Joined
Sep 25, 2019
Messages
191
Likes
463
Any reference to what NH legally considers as "personally known" for this law?

Browsing a few law sites, it's just a broad definition that points to enough acquaintance/familiarity as to be reasonably certain of their identity. (for example: Personally known Definition | Law Insider) Didn't see anything about exactly how long you need to know someone, or what volume of information you need to know to consider them "personally known." Any court examples for reference? Or specific definitions?

Not arguing, I just couldn't find it.

No, it's not something I'd want to bicker with a judge over....but say you spend 10, 15, 20 minutes shooting the breeze with your buyer. You're both vets, you swap military stories, everything sounds right. They flash their license, name matches their email, you've got their phone number, everything they show you checks out.... does that not meet the definition of having enough acquaintance to be reasonably sure of their identity?
 

ScottS

NES Member
Rating - 100%
46   0   0
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
Messages
5,791
Likes
5,781
Location
Live Free or Die
The law doesn't actually say that, so you may want to site where you got that quote from. Otherwise it's just you.
Actually, Federal law does say exactly that. See here, and 18 U.S.C 922(d) and 27 CFR 478.32(d). The phasing is specifically "...knowing or having reasonable cause to believe..."

So, you know, not just me.

Now your turn. You want to cite (not site) something that backs up your position, otherwise it's just you. 159:7 relates only to sales to felons, which doesn't cover the entire gamut of prohibited persons, so it's not on point.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
Any reference to what NH legally considers as "personally known" for this law?

Browsing a few law sites, it's just a broad definition that points to enough acquaintance/familiarity as to be reasonably certain of their identity. (for example: Personally known Definition | Law Insider) Didn't see anything about exactly how long you need to know someone, or what volume of information you need to know to consider them "personally known." Any court examples for reference? Or specific definitions?

Not arguing, I just couldn't find it.

No, it's not something I'd want to bicker with a judge over....but say you spend 10, 15, 20 minutes shooting the breeze with your buyer. You're both vets, you swap military stories, everything sounds right. They flash their license, name matches their email, you've got their phone number, everything they show you checks out.... does that not meet the definition of having enough acquaintance to be reasonably sure of their identity?
I know there is a reference to the P&R being a suitable substitute to "personally known", but you are right, it is vague in the law, we need someone who can search cases for binding decisions.
I will say that the law on sales does make it the seller's responsibility to reasonably know that the person is not prohibited. This isn't the same as knowing their identity.
And the discussion could be broken down to 2 parts. What will keep you out of jail (after paying for you defence). And what will keep you out of court altogether.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
Actually, Federal law does say exactly that. See here, and 18 U.S.C 922(d) and 27 CFR 478.32(d). The phasing is specifically "...knowing or having reasonable cause to believe..."

So, you know, not just me.

Now your turn. You provide a cite that backs up your position, otherwise it's just you. 159:7 relates only to sales to felons, which doesn't cover the entire gamut of prohibited persons, so it's not on point.
Fed law has NOTHING to do with FtF salls within the state of New Hampshire, or within any other state for that matter. It only applies to interstate sales or sales through an FFL, who is required to do a background check and maintain a record.

TRY AGAIN, but you might want to look into how state and federal laws work first.
 
Last edited:

ScottS

NES Member
Rating - 100%
46   0   0
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
Messages
5,791
Likes
5,781
Location
Live Free or Die
I know there is a reference to the P&R being a suitable substitute to "personally known", but you are right, it is vague in the law, we need someone who can search cases for binding decisions.
I will say that the law on sales does make it the seller's responsibility to reasonably know that the person is not prohibited. This isn't the same as knowing their identity.
And the discussion could be broken down to 2 parts. What will keep you out of jail (after paying for you defence). And what will keep you out of court altogether.
By the way, by your logic you lose if you check a guy's P&RL (good for 5 years), and two years ago he comitted a felony. According to you, you're on the hook because there's no exemption for not knowing. Now does that pass the smell test?
 

ScottS

NES Member
Rating - 100%
46   0   0
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
Messages
5,791
Likes
5,781
Location
Live Free or Die
Fesd law has NOTHING to do with FtF salls within the state of New Hampshire, or within any other state for that matter. It only applies to interstate sales or sales through an FFL, who is required to do a background check and maintain a record.

TRY AGAIN, but you might want to look into how state and federal laws work first.
Jesus f***ing Christ, do you not read? It specifically says "To whom may an unlicensed person transfer firearms?" Does that sound like interstate sales or an FFL (AKA a Licensee?) Face it, you're wrong and refuse to admit it.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
By the way, by your logic you lose if you check a guy's P&RL (good for 5 years), and two years ago he comitted a felony. According to you, you're on the hook because there's no exemption for not knowing. Now does that pass the smell test?
No, I've already pointed out that the P&R is accepted as a reasonable proof. The chance that the proof might be wrong does not affect that the seller took reasonable measures. The courts already deal with it this way, this isn't my idea.

What you are saying is the authorities failed in their obligation to revoke and recover the P&R when it became invalid. Can this happen, sure, but the system recognizes that it shouldn't happen and if it doesn't it's not the fault of the gun seller since it wasn't his responsibility to revoke and recover the P&R .
 

ScottS

NES Member
Rating - 100%
46   0   0
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
Messages
5,791
Likes
5,781
Location
Live Free or Die
Fed law has NOTHING to do with FtF salls within the state of New Hampshire, or within any other state for that matter. It only applies to interstate sales or sales through an FFL, who is required to do a background check and maintain a record.

TRY AGAIN, but you might want to look into how state and federal laws work first.
By the way, this statement is ridiculous on its face. Of course fed law impacts FTF sales in NH. Where do you think the prohibition against interstate FTF sale comes from? 18 USC 922. And if you knowingly sell to a prohibited person (fugitive from justice, unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance, someone adjudicated as a mental defective, etc) (ALL NOT FELONIES), you get to say "Hey, NH RSA just covers selling to felons, so no harm no foul?"

God, I hope you don't provide advice or service to someone professionally.
 

drgrant

Moderator
NES Member
Rating - 100%
61   0   0
Joined
Mar 21, 2006
Messages
86,039
Likes
79,987
Lol @ a P&R bg check. I have had heard stories of chiefs just finishing the res form and handing the citizen the tissue paper. Also liability? For what? The license enables very little.

Not to mention with most carry licenses in america with the exception of that one square state ( i dont remember it offhand) That does monthly nics hits on license holders, most carry licenses in america are not hot checked during their term. Carry licenses are not some magical talisman against someone unknowingly selling a gun to a prohibited person.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
Jesus f***ing Christ, do you not read? It specifically says "To whom may an unlicensed person transfer firearms?" Does that sound like interstate sales or an FFL (AKA a Licensee?) Face it, you're wrong and refuse to admit it.
When the Fed law refers to a licensee, it can (and is) only referring to a license issued by the Fed under that section. In other words an FFL.

And from the very article you quoted, which is now the actual law:
"A person may transfer a firearm to an unlicensed resident of their state, provided the transferor does not know or have reasonable cause to believe the transferee is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under federal law. There may be state laws that regulate intrastate firearm transactions. A person considering transferring a firearm should contact their State Attorney General’s Office to inquire about the laws and possible state or local restrictions."

When this refers to unlicensed, they are referring to having an FFL. They then make it clear that the state may have laws regarding intra not inter state transfers. And those are the laws we are discussing.

I know it can be confusing but step back and try to understand that we have 2 sets of laws and a non specific reference to a license in one will not reflect what is a license in the other.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
By the way, this statement is ridiculous on its face. Of course fed law impacts FTF sales in NH. Where do you think the prohibition against interstate FTF sale comes from? 18 USC 922. And if you knowingly sell to a prohibited person (fugitive from justice, unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance, someone adjudicated as a mental defective, etc) (ALL NOT FELONIES), you get to say "Hey, NH RSA just covers selling to felons, so no harm no foul?"

God, I hope you don't provide advice or service to someone professionally.
Actually no the Fed law does not impact FtF sales intrastate. A well known example is the MA mistafelony that makes a person a Fed PP, but they can have the MA FRB return their rights under MA law, yet the Fed does not recognize this. So they can get a MA LTC, and buy and sell FtF, but they can't buy from an FFL who will do a NICIS check and get a denial.

Again you need to understand that there are 2 different systems, and some overlap and other don't. When it comes to FtF sales intrastate the Fed do not regulate this, the state does.

Now we haven't talked about possession laws, many states have these and they often just cite the requirements that the Fed law spells out.

And it may be that NH law leave out the other prohibiting Fed factors, either by mistake or intentionally, but it's also possible that this is included elsewhere or through a court decision. I can't be sure either way. But that's not what we are talking about.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
Lol @ a P&R bg check. I have had heard stories of chiefs just finishing the res form and handing the citizen the tissue paper. Also liability? For what? The license enables very little.

Not to mention with most carry licenses in america with the exception of that one square state ( i dont remember it offhand) That does monthly nics hits on license holders, most carry licenses in america are not hot checked during their term. Carry licenses are not some magical talisman against someone unknowingly selling a gun to a prohibited person.
I only spoke of what I know, the 2 PDs I had first hand conversations about the process. I don't credit any "stories" either way.

Chief's have personal liability to issue or deny within the deadline. Yes, personal, as in out of their own pocket. Something MA needs.
And if a Chief issues a P&R without a basic background check, and the person uses it to buy a gun FtF, and then kills someone, YES I would fully expect that the Chief or town is going to have to write a BIG check.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
If you and the buyer are both NH residents it is legal to do an FTF, provided the person is "personally known to you". If the buyer is not "personally known to you" then the buyer must have an NH pistol permit. The other option is using an NH FFL and either you paying the fee or splitting it with the buyer, etc.

If you choose an FTF sale there are no record keeping requirements, although a lot of people probably write up a bill of sale for the gun(s), etc.

-Mike
Private Gun Sale in NH

Seems I'm not the only one who thinks this.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
A couple corrections to my past posts based on taking another look at the relevant RSA
Section 159:6 License to Carry.

The deadline for issuing/denying a P&R is 14 days not 10.

It does state a requirement to meet all Fed and State restrictions on gun possession, and while I took this as a requirement for a background check, and certainly those I've spoken to at PDs have taken it as such, it does not in fact say that. Personally, the requirements, would seem to motivate Chiefs to do the check and not expose himself to any potential liability. But without a court decision either way to cite, who's to say.
 
Rating - 100%
37   0   0
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Messages
18,628
Likes
23,950
Location
Last seen eating the bark off a tree.
If I am selling a firearm FTF, I require a NH permit if I don't know the person. Otherwise, it's an FFL on THEM! Likewise, I've been asked for mine while making a private purchase. Some guys cry about it, too Fng bad,

Ya, if I lived in a "free state", not sure I would take advantage of the "gun show loophole" as a seller unless I was selling to someone I know personally. Otherwise it would be going through an FFL.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
I said absolutely nothing about “liability” or wether the check does anything. It’s a requirement (a very loose one) under RSA 159.
Chill dude, I quoted you exactly as posted, nothing more nothing less. It speaks to the need for a P&R, the original discussion. Nothing more and nothing less.
 

Len-2A Training

Instructor
Instructor
NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 98.6%
73   1   0
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Messages
55,519
Likes
17,141
Location
NH
A couple corrections to my past posts based on taking another look at the relevant RSA
Section 159:6 License to Carry.

The deadline for issuing/denying a P&R is 14 days not 10.

It does state a requirement to meet all Fed and State restrictions on gun possession, and while I took this as a requirement for a background check, and certainly those I've spoken to at PDs have taken it as such, it does not in fact say that. Personally, the requirements, would seem to motivate Chiefs to do the check and not expose himself to any potential liability. But without a court decision either way to cite, who's to say.
A real BG check takes less then a couple of minutes, so there is no excuse for any PD to issue a P/R without doing one. Just like the check they do when they stop you for speeding, it is damn near instantaneous.

As for "known to me" issue. Here's an interesting thought based on (not specifically relevant here) real life. Growing up I was friends with the kid that lived across the street from me (from age 10 thru high school). We played tag, football, etc. together, in and out of each other's homes, etc., etc. My Mother one day mentioned that he had been arrested for shop-lifting (minor stuff and he was a kid). It was obviously a misdemeanor and likely not even prosecuted. However, on that same basis a person could have committed a felony and I (you, other) wouldn't necessarily know about it even though you/I "know the person".
 

KBCraig

NES Member
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Dec 29, 2009
Messages
17,702
Likes
17,931
Location
Granite State of Mind
there is a number on it, no different than a MA LTC
I don't know you, and I don't know where you live, but my NH RPL is a flimsy self-duplicating bit of tissue paper. It can't be confirmed by anyone except my own chief of police, because it's not entered into any database.

A real BG check takes less then a couple of minutes, so there is no excuse for any PD to issue a P/R without doing one.
Nothing in the law requires that the issuing authority be a PD (many towns don't even have police). It can be the selectmen of a town.

Nothing in the law requires a background check. The application says that the applicant agrees to investigation of the answers given, but that is not required for a license to be issued.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
I don't know you, and I don't know where you live, but my NH RPL is a flimsy self-duplicating bit of tissue paper. It can't be confirmed by anyone except my own chief of police, because it's not entered into any database.
Yup that's what you get as a resident, non-res is a plastic card. The res P&R you get is one of three copies. One goes to you, one stays at the issuing PD, and one goes to the state and is entered into their DB. There is a number on it in red. I've personally seen it keyed into the system and it pulls up the info.

I do IT for LE in NH, I'm pretty up on what the systems do and don't do.

The state maintains a DB of all P&Rs both res and non-res.

Apparently some PDs upload P&R data electronically, as near as I can tell it's kind of an opt-in thing to either do it electronically or stay with sending the paper. NH PDs are weird, some are all about the tech, other would rather be on horses. It's the same with electronic fingerprint scanners, some have them other don't, and it doesn't seem to be about size.
 

42!

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
9   0   0
Joined
Apr 9, 2010
Messages
10,359
Likes
9,811
A real BG check takes less then a couple of minutes, so there is no excuse for any PD to issue a P/R without doing one. Just like the check they do when they stop you for speeding, it is damn near instantaneous.

As for "known to me" issue. Here's an interesting thought based on (not specifically relevant here) real life. Growing up I was friends with the kid that lived across the street from me (from age 10 thru high school). We played tag, football, etc. together, in and out of each other's homes, etc., etc. My Mother one day mentioned that he had been arrested for shop-lifting (minor stuff and he was a kid). It was obviously a misdemeanor and likely not even prosecuted. However, on that same basis a person could have committed a felony and I (you, other) wouldn't necessarily know about it even though you/I "know the person".
Ya, "known to me" is hardly an exacting standard. All I can assume is they were looking for a way to have restrictions without people objecting because the law would interfere with sales to family and friends. So we have a poorly written law. But if we try to drop that requirement now, we may just end up with BG checks on all sales. They tried it twice, I'm not giving them another reason.
 
Top Bottom