Three background check bills (H.R. 8, H.R. 1446, H.R. 1518) have been introduced in Congress. H.R. 8 and H.R. 1446 have passed the House; none have yet become law. H.R. 8 has 201 cosponsors including 3 Republicans; H.R. 1446 has 165 cosponsors, all Democrats; H.R. 1518 has 41 cosponsors including 7 Democrats. Here are the CRS summaries:
This bill establishes new background check requirements for firearm transfers between private parties (i.e., unlicensed individuals). Specifically, it prohibits a firearm transfer between private parties unless a licensed gun dealer, manufacturer, or importer first takes possession of the firearm to conduct a background check. The prohibition does not apply to certain firearm transfers or exchanges, such as a gift between spouses in good faith.
(Sec. 2) This bill revises background check requirements applicable to proposed firearm transfers from a federal firearms licensee (e.g., a licensed gun dealer) to an unlicensed person.
Specifically, it increases the amount of time, from 3 business days to a minimum of 10 business days, that a federal firearms licensee must wait to receive a completed background check prior to transferring a firearm to an unlicensed person. (This type of transaction is often referred to as a default proceed transaction.)
If a submitted background check remains incomplete after 10 business days, then the prospective purchaser may submit a petition for a final firearms eligibility determination. If an additional 10 days elapse without a final determination, then the federal firearms licensee may transfer the firearm to the prospective purchaser.
(Sec. 3) The Government Accountability Office must report on the extent to which the changes have prevented firearms transfers to prohibited persons.
(Sec. 4) The Federal Bureau of Investigation must report on the number of petitions it receives for final federal firearms determinations.
(Sec. 5) The Department of Justice, in consultation with the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence and Firearms, must report on further amendments to the background check process that would likely reduce the risk of death or great bodily harm to victims of domestic violence, domestic abuse, dating partner violence, sexual assault, and stalking.
This bill modifies procedures for conducting firearms-related background checks through the national instant criminal background check system (NICS). Specifically, it permits the NICS to query an additional database—the National Data Exchange—as part of a firearm-related background check.