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NFATCA Report: V21N7

By Jeffrey Folloder

Be Prepared ...

There have been many quite prescient individuals that have offered the opinion that a failure to plan is a plan for failure. It seems simple enough. The thought is that exerting a little bit of effort up front will result in less than catastrophe in the future. So why is it that so many of us fail to heed the sober warnings of those who have quite obviously been through “it” before? Why are so many folks, particularly those involved in firearms, caught up in calamity that could have been avoided with some simple, diligent planning on the front end?

I do not pretend to offer commentary on the human condition. I will suggest to you that I am speaking from personal experience. Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. Like many of you, I hold a Federal Firearms License (FFL); in my case an 07/SOT as a manufacturer. It is all too easy to put off checking in deliveries. It can wait. It is much less fuss to copy down the information from the invoice into the Acquisition and Disposition book when I get a few spare moments. It is all too easy to just punch holes in the 4473s and shove them in the giant binder.

But that is a recipe for disaster. Boxes that aren’t handled could easily be forgotten or dealt with far past ATF’s entry timeline requirements. Working from an invoice for critical record information? What are the chances that the shipper made a mistake? Not proofreading the 4473s? Nobody ever makes a mistake on those. We all know that reality is somewhat different than our ideal state of bliss. So, I deal with the shipping boxes as soon as they arrive. I open the boxes. I lay eyes on each and every serial number and reconcile it with the invoice right away. The right serial number goes in the A&D book right then. Every line on every 4473 is checked. How about that? I forgot to sign at least one of them. Pretty sure that the Industry Operations Investigator would have cheerfully...

This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V21N7 (September 2017)
and was posted online on July 21, 2017

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