When you hold a federal firearms license and operate a Texas gun business, the chance of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms auditing your business at some point is high. Under the terms of the Gun Control Act, the ATF may conduct an inspection of your business once every 12 months. Yet, most firearms business owners have their businesses undergo ATF inspections every couple of years.
According to Fastbound, if, during an investigation into your business, inspectors find any violations, they do not have the authority to place you under arrest. However, what they may do is refer the evidence they have against your business to the ATF criminal division.
Common steps taken during an ATF investigation
The investigator does not have to give you a heads up when he or she plans to audit your business. He or she maintains the right to do so at any time during your normal hours of operation. Once there, expect the investigator to comb through your business records, inventory and general business environment. He or she may also check the serial numbers of any firearms you are selling and review your bound book for errors.
Common errors found during ATF investigations
Many ATF investigations turn up similar errors and mistakes. You may face legal trouble if your ATF investigation reveals that you failed to verify a buyer’s eligibility to buy a gun, or if you failed to record firearms-related transactions at your place of business. You may also face trouble if you are unable to account for guns or failed to properly report the sale of guns.
Federal firearms violations may bring with them serious consequences, including possible time behind bars, among others.