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Which states have closed or limited the Charleston Loophole?

21 states have adopted this policy

AL AK AZ AR CA CO CT DE FL GA HI ID IL IN IA KS KY LA ME MD MA MI MN MS MO MT NE NV NH NJ NM NY NC ND OH OK OR PA RI SC SD TN TX UT VT VA WA WV WI WY

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Alabama has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Alaska has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Arizona has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Arkansas has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

California has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
10-day waiting period for all firearm sales

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Colorado has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Dealer may not transfer firearm until background check is complete.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Connecticut has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Extends time for background check to 60 days

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Delaware has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Extends time for background check to 25 days

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Florida has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Dealers may not transfer gun until 3 business days have elapsed from purchase, or until background check is complete, whichever occurs later.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Georgia has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Hawaii has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Permit to purchase not issued earlier than 14 days after application and authorities have up to 20 days to issue or deny permit.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Idaho has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Illinois has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Authorities have 30 days to issue or deny application for permit, required to purchase any firearm.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Indiana has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Iowa has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Kansas has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Kentucky has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Louisiana has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Maine has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Maryland has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Authorities have 30 days to issue or deny application for permit to purchase a handgun; 7-day waiting period required for sales of certain firearms.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Massachusetts has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Authorities have 40 days to issue or deny permits to purchase firearms.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Michigan has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Minnesota has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Requires 5-day waiting period for sales of handguns and semiautomatic military-style assault weapons

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Mississippi has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Missouri has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Montana has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Nebraska has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Nevada has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

New Hampshire has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

New Jersey has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Authorities have 30 days to issue or deny an application for permits to purchase firearms

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

New Mexico has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

New York has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Extends time for background check to 30 days.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

North Carolina has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Authorities have 14 days to issue or deny an application for a permit to purchase a handgun.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

North Dakota has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Ohio has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Oklahoma has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Oregon has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Pennsylvania has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Extends time to complete background check to 10 days.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Rhode Island has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Requires 7-day waiting period for all firearms

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

South Carolina has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

South Dakota has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Tennessee has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Authorities deny sales if prospective purchaser charged with crime that would prohibit them from firearm possession, even if final disposition is not available to background check operator.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Texas has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Utah has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Dealer prohibited from transferring firearm until background check is complete.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Vermont has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Extends time for background check to 7 business days

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Virginia has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Extends time to complete background check to 5 days.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Washington has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Dealers must wait 10 business days to transfer firearm if authorities have not resolved background check.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

West Virginia has not adopted this policy

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Wisconsin has adopted this policy

What does the state law require?
Dealers must wait 5 business days to transfer handgun if authorities have not resolved the background check.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Wyoming has not adopted this policy

What It Does

The Charleston Loophole is a dangerous gap in the federal system that allows gun sales to proceed after three business days, even if the background check has not yet been completed. States can address this loophole by giving background check operators more time to determine if a buyer is prohibited. The strongest policies never allow a sale to proceed until the background check is complete. A full discussion on the Background Check System is here.

The Impact

The Charleston Loophole enables an astonishing number of illegal purchasers to arm themselves—with over 5,800 illegal sales in 2020 alone completed without a background check.

Charleston Loophole Closed or Limited

Policy adopted? What does the state law require?
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California 10-day waiting period for all firearm sales
Colorado Dealer may not transfer firearm until background check is complete.
Connecticut Extends time for background check to 60 days
Delaware Extends time for background check to 25 days
Florida Dealers may not transfer gun until 3 business days have elapsed from purchase, or until background check is complete, whichever occurs later.
Georgia
Hawaii Permit to purchase not issued earlier than 14 days after application and authorities have up to 20 days to issue or deny permit.
Idaho
Illinois Authorities have 30 days to issue or deny application for permit, required to purchase any firearm.
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland Authorities have 30 days to issue or deny application for permit to purchase a handgun; 7-day waiting period required for sales of certain firearms.
Massachusetts Authorities have 40 days to issue or deny permits to purchase firearms.
Michigan
Minnesota Requires 5-day waiting period for sales of handguns and semiautomatic military-style assault weapons
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey Authorities have 30 days to issue or deny an application for permits to purchase firearms
New Mexico
New York Extends time for background check to 30 days.
North Carolina Authorities have 14 days to issue or deny an application for a permit to purchase a handgun.
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania Extends time to complete background check to 10 days.
Rhode Island Requires 7-day waiting period for all firearms
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee Authorities deny sales if prospective purchaser charged with crime that would prohibit them from firearm possession, even if final disposition is not available to background check operator.
Texas
Utah Dealer prohibited from transferring firearm until background check is complete.
Vermont Extends time for background check to 7 business days
Virginia Extends time to complete background check to 5 days.
Washington Dealers must wait 10 business days to transfer firearm if authorities have not resolved background check.
West Virginia
Wisconsin Dealers must wait 5 business days to transfer handgun if authorities have not resolved the background check.
Wyoming
Show Citations and Footnotes
Source: Cal. Penal Code § 26815; Cal. Penal Code § 28220(f); Colo. Rev. Stat. §§ 18-12-112.5, 24-33.5-424(3)(b.5); Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 29-33(b), 29-36g(a), 29-37a, 39-37q; Del. Code Ann. tit. 11, §§ 1448A(b), 1448B(a); Fla. Stat. § 790.0655(1)(a); Haw. Rev. Stat. § 134-2; 430 Ill. Comp. Stat. §§ 65/2(a), 65/5; 720 ILCS § 5/24-3(A)(g); Md. Code Ann., Pub. Safety §§ 5-117.1(c), (h), 5-123, 5-124; Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 140, §§ 129B, 129C, 131; Mass. Gen. Laws  ch. 269, § 10; Minn. Stat. § 624.7132, subd. (4); N.J. Stat. Ann. §§ 2C:58-2(a)(5)(a), 2C:58-3(a), (b), (f); N.Y. Penal Law §§ 400.00(4-a), 400.00(12), 400.20; N.Y. Gen. Bus. Law §§ 897, 898; N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 14-402, 14-404(f); 18 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 6111(b)(7), (b)(1.1)(iii); 11 R.I. Gen. Laws §§ 11-47-35, 11-47-35.2; Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-17-1316(n)-(o); Utah Code Ann. § 76-10-526(5); Va. Code Ann. § 18.2-308.2:2(B)(2); 13 V.S.A. § 4019(d)(2); Wash. Rev. Code §§ 9.41.090(5), 9.41.092; Wis. Stat. § 175.35(2g)(c)(4)(c).

Everytown for Gun Safety. (2021, February 4). Everytown reveals there were a record number of gun sales to people prohibited from buying in 2020 because of a dangerous loophole. Press release. Retrieved January 19, 2022, from https://www.everytown.org/press/everytown-reveals-there-were-a-record-number-of-gun-sales-to-people-prohibited-from-buying-in-2020-because-of-a-dangerous-loophole/. 

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