Private Party Firearm Sales – Minnesota

Disclaimer:
Always check your local laws and consult an attorney, this was written on April 3rd, 2014 and applies to how the Minnesota law was written at that time.

Recently I was involved in a debate on the legal requirements for a private party sale in Minnesota. The other person in the debate believed rather strongly that a private seller was obligated to report the transfer to the sheriffs department under Statute 624.7132, which is simply not true.

I’ll offer some quick details, and then divide it into pieces and discuss it in more detail for those who want to understand it better.

You could be charged with a gross misdemeanor if the buyer possesses or uses the weapon within one year after the transfer in furtherance of a felony crime of violence, and if the buyer was not eligible to possesses the firearm at the time of transfer under 624.713.

OR

If the buyer possesses or uses the weapon within one year after the transfer in furtherance of a felony crime of violence, and it was reasonable to foresee that they would use it in a felony crime of violence.

For private party firearm sales the following must apply:
(buyer = transforer, seller = transferee)

  1. the seller does not know or have reasonable cause to believe that the buyer is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under federal or state law;
  2. the sale, delivery, and receipt fully comply with the laws of both states; and
  3. the buyer and the seller meet in person to make the transfer.

It’s best to ask to see a permit to carry or permit to purchase,  which puts you in compliance with statute 624.7132, in addition, a bill of sale signed by both parties is rather common.

 

For those interested in learning more, let’s dive in, shall we?

The statute reads as follows:

624.7132 REPORT OF TRANSFER.
Subdivision 1.Required information.

Except as provided in this section and section 624.7131, every person who agrees to transfer a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon shall report the following information in writing to the chief of police of the organized full-time police department of the municipality where the proposed transferee resides or to the appropriate county sheriff if there is no such local chief of police:

(1) the name, residence, telephone number, and driver’s license number or nonqualification certificate number, if any, of the proposed transferee;

(2) the sex, date of birth, height, weight, and color of eyes, and distinguishing physical characteristics, if any, of the proposed transferee;

(3) a statement that the proposed transferee authorizes the release to the local police authority of commitment information about the proposed transferee maintained by the commissioner of human services, to the extent that the information relates to the proposed transferee’s eligibility to possess a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon under section 624.713, subdivision 1;

(4) a statement by the proposed transferee that the transferee is not prohibited by section 624.713 from possessing a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon; and

(5) the address of the place of business of the transferor.

The report shall be signed and dated by the transferor and the proposed transferee. The report shall be delivered by the transferor to the chief of police or sheriff no later than three days after the date of the agreement to transfer, excluding weekends and legal holidays. The statement under clause (3) must comply with any applicable requirements of Code of Federal Regulations, title 42, sections 2.31 to 2.35, with respect to consent to disclosure of alcohol or drug abuse patient records.

Now, if you stop there it’s possible to see how that could be taken that you need to submit paperwork to your local sheriffs department, however if you continue to read the statute there are exclusions.

Subd. 12.Exclusions.
Except as otherwise provided in section 609.66, subdivision 1f, this section shall not apply to transfers of antique firearms as curiosities or for their historical significance or value, transfers to or between federally licensed firearms dealers, transfers by order of court, involuntary transfers, transfers at death or the following transfers:

(1) a transfer by a person other than a federally licensed firearms dealer;

(2) a loan to a prospective transferee if the loan is intended for a period of no more than one day;

(3) the delivery of a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon to a person for the purpose of repair, reconditioning or remodeling;

(4) a loan by a teacher to a student in a course designed to teach marksmanship or safety with a pistol and approved by the commissioner of natural resources;

(5) a loan between persons at a firearms collectors exhibition;

(6) a loan between persons lawfully engaged in hunting or target shooting if the loan is intended for a period of no more than 12 hours;

(7) a loan between law enforcement officers who have the power to make arrests other than citizen arrests; and

(8) a loan between employees or between the employer and an employee in a business if the employee is required to carry a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon by reason of employment and is the holder of a valid permit to carry a pistol.

The key for this article is the first one, which excludes private party sales:
(1) a transfer by a person other than a federally licensed firearms dealer;

There are three requirements for private party sales, they are:

Exempted Transfers
Federal law authorizes an unlicensed individual (a non-FFL) who is not a prohibited person to sell a firearm (handgun, rifle, or shotgun) to an unlicensed resident of his or her own state, as well as to loan or rent a firearm to a nonresident of the state for temporary use for lawful sporting purposes, provided that:

  1. the transferor does not know or have reasonable cause to believe that the transferee is prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms under federal or state law;
  2. the sale, delivery, and receipt fully comply with the laws of both states; and
  3. the transferor and transferee meet in person to make the transfer.

Handguns and ‘Assault Style Rifles’ have special considerations.

Stature 609.66 subd 1f reads:

Subd. 1f.Gross misdemeanor; transferring firearm without background check.

A person, other than a federally licensed firearms dealer, who transfers a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon to another without complying with the transfer requirements of section 624.7132, is guilty of a gross misdemeanor if the transferee possesses or uses the weapon within one year after the transfer in furtherance of a felony crime of violence, and if:

(1) the transferee was prohibited from possessing the weapon under section 624.713 at the time of the transfer; or

(2) it was reasonably foreseeable at the time of the transfer that the transferee was likely to use or possess the weapon in furtherance of a felony crime of violence.

You could be charged with a gross misdemeanor if the buyer possesses or uses the weapon within one year after the transfer in furtherance of a felony crime of violence, and if the buyer was not eligible to possesses the firearm at the time of transfer under 624.713.

OR

If the buyer possesses or uses the weapon within one year after the transfer in furtherance of a felony crime of violence, and it was reasonable to foresee that they would use it in a felony crime of violence.

It’s best to ask to see a permit to carry or permit to purchase,  which puts you in compliance with statute 624.7132.

624.7132 Subd. 8.
Report not required.
If the proposed transferee presents a valid transferee permit issued under section 624.7131 or a valid permit to carry issued under section 624.714, the transferor need not file a transfer report.

I hope this clears any confusion on the matter, as it can be a hot topic.

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