Industry News: ATF Revises Form 4473
By Robert M. Hausman

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) has revised ATF Form 4473, the new version of which became effective on July 9, 2012.

The revised Form 4473 is consistent with the current legal interpretation relating to firearms disabilities for certain nonimmigrant aliens. The prohibitions on transfer and possession of firearms and ammunition apply only to nonimmigrant aliens who were admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa, and that the prohibitions do not apply to nonimmigrant aliens who lawfully entered the United States without a visa. In addition, proof of 90 days continuous residency is no longer required for any alien.

The revised e-Form 4473 application will be posted and available for download from the ATF web site as not all FFLs have received hard copies of the new form by postal mail. All FFLs must ensure that they are using the correct e-Form 4473 version.

Since July 9, 2012, FFLs may no longer use the previous edition (August 2008) of the Form 4473 as it will be obsolete. The changes to Form 4473 include the following:

Section A:
Question 10. This item has been divided into two sections: Race and Ethnicity. You must select at least one race in item 10.b. regardless of ethnicity designation selected in item 10.1. Both items must be answered.

Question 11.1. This item was amended to clarify that this category of prohibited persons is limited to aliens who are admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa.

Question 12. This item was amended to clarify that this category of prohibited persons is limited to aliens who are admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa.

Section B:
Question 20c. Proof of 90-days continuous residency is no longer required for any alien.

Question 20d. (Renumbered Question 20c.) This item was amended to clarify that this category of prohibited persons is limited to aliens who are admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa.

The instructions to the corresponding questions from above were revised accordingly.

Sen. Reid Said to Block National Carry Vote

Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) is reported as refusing to allow a floor vote on the House-passed national-reciprocity carry bill.

“The Senate shouldn’t be about the majority party cherry-picking what they want to vote on,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) said. “Harry Reid will only vote if he can win.”

Sen. Paul recently tried to attach amendments granting carry rights in Washington D.C. to a Democratic bill enabling D.C. politicians to decide how tax dollars are spent. Sen. Joseph Lieberman, chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, canceled the entire bill to avoid a vote on the gun measures, according to The Washington Times. Vulnerable Democrats on the committee representing pro-gun states – such as Sen. Jon Tester of Montana and Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri – could side with the Republican minority and provide the votes to enact concealed carry rights.

“The bill ended up getting pulled down because they are fearful that it could pass,” Sen. Paul said. His legislation would allow non-resident carry permits to be recognized in D.C. Another provision allows D.C. residents to purchase firearms in any state.

Democrats Withdraw ‘Trayvon’ Amendment

Democrats recently backed-off their effort to offer a “Trayvon amendment” to pressure states to drop their stand-your-ground laws after learning it was likely to be ruled out-of-order under the evening’s rules for debate on the House floor.

Rep. Keith Ellison, Minnesota Democrat, said he will still try to force a debate at a more “appropriate” time in the future, saying action is demanded by the case of Trayvon Martin, the Florida teenager who police said was shot dead in a street encounter with a neighborhood watch volunteer.

The Ellison amendment would have docked federal criminal justice grants to states that have stand-your-ground laws, which allow residents to use deadly force to respond to an attack without trying to retreat. “Shoot-first laws make prosecutions harder because they presume the use of deadly force is reasonable,” Ellison said on the House floor.

His plan would have docked states with such laws 20% of their money under the Byrne Justice Assistance Grants, which are used to fund a wide array of programs, from law enforcement to drug treatment to jails and prosecutor’s offices. Ellison said nearly half of all states now have stand-your-ground laws. He had wanted to raise the amendment as part of the House’s debate over the Justice Department spending bill. But the way the amendment was drawn made it out of order.

USITC Firearms, Ammunition Import Data May 2012

NSSF reports that overall U.S. imports (in units) in six sporting arms and ammunition categories increased 38.7% in May 2012 compared to May 2011.

May 2012 imported units in tracked categories totaled 248.7 million, up from 179.4 million reported in May 2011. NSSF reports that overall U.S. exports (in units) in six sporting arms and ammunition categories decreased 0.5 percent in May 2012 compared to May 2011. May 2012 exported units in tracked categories totaled 68.5 million, down from 68.8 million reported in May 2011. All figures sourced from U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC).

Handgun imports increased 73.2 percent from 148,485 to 257,220 units. Within the handgun category, Pistol import units increased 68.0 percent from 135,199 to 227,190 units while imported Revolver units rose 126.0 percent from 13,286 to 30,030 units.

Rifle imports were up 143.4 percent from 39,728 to 96,701 units. As of May 10, 2012, this category has been adjusted to exclude HTS codes 9303304010 & 9303308005 (Telescopic Sights Imported with Rifles).

Telescopic Sights Imported with Rifles (HTS codes 9303304010 and HTS 9303308005, defined as telescopic sights or other optical devices suitable for use with arms, if mounted on a firearm or entered with the firearm on which they are designed to be mounted) increased 58.2 percent from 3,096 units to 4,898.

Shotgun category posted a 13.4 percent decrease in imported units from 59,697 to 51,696.

Muzzleloader category rose 39.3 percent from 12,453 to 17,345 units.

Other Cartridges (excluding Shotgun cartridges) category increased 39.1 percent from 170.7 million to 237.4 million units.

Shotgun Cartridges category increased 29.0 percent rising to 10.9 million units as compared to last year’s 8.4 million.

Source: U.S. International Trade Commission

Academy Sues Blackwater Over Its New Name

Academy, the sporting goods retailer, has taken issue with Blackwater’s (the security contractor) attempted use of its new name, “Academi” and has filed a trademark infringement suit.

“Given the corporate history of Defendant and the negative media coverage stemming from its security operatives in Iraq, Academy will suffer irreparable harm by any confusion over a connection, joint venture, or affiliation between Defendant and Academy,” the suit says, which was filed in U.S. District Court in Houston on June 25.

Primarily at-issue is Academi’s pro-shop website, where it sells hats, jackets, shoes and other outdoor gear – the same type of items that can be found on Academy’s site. The company still gets the majority of its revenue from security contracts, according to The Virginian-Pilot.

Academy is asking the court for triple damages and to bar Academi from using its new name. An Academi spokesman said, “The company is confident in its position and any claims to the contrary are without merit.”

The author publishes two of the small arms industry’s most widely read trade newsletters. The International Firearms Trade covers the world firearms scene, and The New Firearms Business covers the domestic market. He may be reached at: FirearmsB@aol.com.

This article first appeared in Small Arms Review SAW (December 2012)
and was posted online on November 23, 2012


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