Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2019
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    Lansdale, Pennsylvania
    (Montgomery County)
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    Angry FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    To start off, I'm not here to debate the legality of our state trying to keep a firearm registry. I'm not interested in "sticking it to the man" or challenging the system in any way shape or form. I'm actually hoping a PA state cop or lawyer can give me a straight answer on this, because I know next to nothing as to how any of the FFL paperwork is actually used after it has been filed away (for both ATF and PSP). My ultimate goal here is to avoid a headache later down the line IF something were to happen and either the ATF or PSP had to refer to said paperwork.

    So I picked up a P238 Legion from a local FFL recently (online order) and I noticed that some of the info was wrong on the Pennsylvania State Police Record of Sale Form (SP 4-113). In Section E the wrong model and caliber was written. The FFL employee thought it was a P938 in 9mm, but it's actually a P238 in .380 ACP. It's an understandable mistake since the two guns look almost identical. But besides that the serial # and all the other info on the form is 100% correct. There's a good chance he probably screwed up the same info on Form 4473 for the ATF as well. I also found it weird that the FFL didn't ask for my job title, work address and contact info like they normally do.

    Anyway I returned to the FFL a few days later to try to get the paperwork fixed. They said not to worry about it and basically refused in a polite manner. That really rubbed me the wrong way. I just hope this won't come back to bite me in the ass if something happened later down the line. For example if I'm trying to get my gun back from the police after I've been cleared in a defensive situation, they might pull up the paperwork and raise a big stink about how some info doesn't match up. I can see that being a nightmare to deal with. I probably wouldn't care if this was some cheap gun, but it's a relatively pricey pocket pistol and I'd rather make sure everything is in order.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Chalfont, Pennsylvania
    (Bucks County)
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    FFL needs to enter the correct info on the form.
    It is unlikely anyone will ever catch the error as there is nothing to indicate to psp that the data is incorrect.
    If the FFL refuses to correct the form, a call to PSP indicating the error might be in order.
    Crusader's local #556 South Central Asia chapter

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ligonier, Pennsylvania
    (Westmoreland County)
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    As an FFL myself; if we made this error and it was brought to our attention we would do what we needed to do to rectify the situation. That being said; my suggestion to you is that you return to the FFL in question and VERY strongly insist that they correct any paperwork involved. If they balk at this then insist for your transfer fee to be refunded as they clearly didn't earn it by doing the transfer properly. If they still give you a hard time; mention that a call to both the BATFE and the PSP will be forthcoming on your part.
    Goog luck.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Mohnton, Pennsylvania
    (Berks County)
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    The s/n is correct so I think your ok but the FFL is the one with the problem. Scotsguard gave great advice. Give them a second chance before they get bent over by the man. Your shop there, I wouldn’t have any items stored there, if you get my drift.
    The Gun is the Badge of a Free Man

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    State College, Pennsylvania
    (Centre County)
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    66
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    I concur with those that said to go back to the FFL. It IS a big deal since there are those PD's that use the sales database as a de facto registry and if something were to happen, because the description does not match you might have a hard time getting your property back. It's not hard to do, every FFL in PA has the numbers to the PSP Firearms Unit and I dare say that probably every FFL in PA that does transfers has been contacted by them to fix errors on the SP4-113 at one time or another. They really need to make sure the information on the 4473 and the SP4-113 match. If the FFL balks at doing this then just tell them as soon as you leave the store you are calling the PSP Firearms Unit and the BATFE and see what they say.

    I noticed that you said that the FFL did not ask you your job title, work address, etc. Who filled out Section B of the SP4-113? Typically the FFL has the buyer/transferee fill out this portion and sign at the bottom of Section B. Then when the PICS comes back with the approval the buyer signs Section C.
    Ron USAF Ret E-8 FFL01/SOT3 NRA Benefactor Member

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    West Alexander, Pennsylvania
    (Washington County)
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    52
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    Quote Originally Posted by Xringshooter View Post
    I concur with those that said to go back to the FFL. It IS a big deal since there are those PD's that use the sales database as a de facto registry and if something were to happen, because the description does not match you might have a hard time getting your property back. It's not hard to do, every FFL in PA has the numbers to the PSP Firearms Unit and I dare say that probably every FFL in PA that does transfers has been contacted by them to fix errors on the SP4-113 at one time or another. They really need to make sure the information on the 4473 and the SP4-113 match. If the FFL balks at doing this then just tell them as soon as you leave the store you are calling the PSP Firearms Unit and the BATFE and see what they say.

    I noticed that you said that the FFL did not ask you your job title, work address, etc. Who filled out Section B of the SP4-113? Typically the FFL has the buyer/transferee fill out this portion and sign at the bottom of Section B. Then when the PICS comes back with the approval the buyer signs Section C.
    I was wondering the same thing.
    Washington County Machine Guns & Tactical Range -- CMP Affliated Club -- 07/02 FFL/SOT and Type 20 FEL (Manufacturer of High Explosives)
    Specializing in Bachelor parties with 50+ machine guns including M2HB, M249 SAW, M1919, RPD, and M60.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Mohnton, Pennsylvania
    (Berks County)
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    Quote Originally Posted by WCMG View Post
    I was wondering the same thing.
    The new internet system at the places I’ve been that use it, don’t ask that information.
    The Gun is the Badge of a Free Man

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    Lansdale, Pennsylvania
    (Montgomery County)
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    Thanks for the replies. I went back to the FFL today to get the paperwork corrected. This time I spoke with the manager. Once again (not surprisingly) they said it wasn't a big deal. As long as the manufacturer and serial # matched up I was good to go. They claimed the records get tossed out after 14 days anyway, which sounds like total BS. I insisted that they fix it anyway but they just kept repeating everything over and over. Felt like I was talking to a wall. I didn't want to lose my temper and create a scene so I left.

    Stopped by another FFL on the way home and got their opinion on the situation. They said I definitely needed to get that info fixed. They also found it odd that they didn't ask for my employment info.

    Called the Pennsylvania State Police firearms division to see if they could help me and the lady on the phone just told me to go back to the FFL (which I already tried TWICE now). She said they couldn't do anything on their end.

    Then I tried calling PICS and every phone number I dialed (all 717 area code numbers) went straight to voicemail. I'm completely out of ideas here. I guess I'm SOL and I just have to hope this won't cause issues later down the line.

    This is seriously the dumbest and most frustrating thing I've had to deal with in recent memory. On one side I have an inept FFL who doesn't seem to care about whether they get to keep their license by doing their job properly. And on the other side of it our state police doesn't seem to care about getting issues fixed when you actually TRY to be a responsible owner by fixing the information. I can't win.


    EDIT: Don't know if it matters but I also wanted to add that this FFL uses the internet based system. I only had to fill out a portion of the ATF form by hand and that's basically it.
    Last edited by mmmoose; May 22nd, 2019 at 02:13 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    USN Retired, Pennsylvania
    (Monroe County)
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    When his IOI makes his insp he better lock up his dog.

    I triple check and make sure all the forms and my A&D record all match. I and the customer don't need that noise.

    Put a review in the shops section, next time also check your forms. There is nothing secret about them and any FFL should be willing to show you or even make a copy for you of your forms.
    TriggerTime LLc 01/02 FFL "Range Rosco"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Bucks, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: FFL Screwed Up Paperwork

    None of the FFL's I work with would dismiss an inaccuracy in their bound book as unimportant.

    I see a few issues. Various PD's still use the ROSDB as a "registry", and they will keep your gun if what they have in hand doesn't match the reported gun, especially if the same SN is used by that manufacturer multiple times for different models. Worst case, SN 54321A is used for the .380 and also for the 9mm versions, and the other gun was purchased by a Pennsylvania resident so their records show that the gun you have was also purchased by some guy across the state. So your gun gets seized and becomes expensive to get back.

    Worse, there's a non-zero chance that the gun they say you have was reported as stolen somewhere in the USA. There's no positive outcome from that, just various flavors of problems.

    One quick & dirty hack would be to take your gun to a better FFL, and have him log it in correctly and transfer it to you correctly, generating a new Record of Sale form. It will cost a little, but at least the ROSDB will have an entry for the gun you have in hand; downside is that the other entry will still be there, but you have a plausible explanation for it, and nobody will be looking to seize your pistol.
    Attorney Phil Kline, AKA gunlawyer001@gmail.com
    Free seminar 7/18/19 in Quakertown: https://www.senatormensch.com/concealed-carry-seminar/

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