The Background Check Initiative

How the Background Check Initiative Works

The Background Check Initiative will close a loophole in Nevada law by requiring criminal background checks for all gun sales, with reasonable exceptions for family, hunting, and self-defense.

Under The Background Check Initiative, unlicensed sellers will meet their buyers at a licensed gun dealer. Over 97% of Nevadans live within 10 miles of a licensed gun dealer, so this would be easy and convenient.

If the gun dealer agrees to help process the sale, the dealer will conduct a background check on the potential buyer and comply with state and federal law as though transferring the gun from the dealer’s own inventory, except that the dealer will contact the federal National Instant Background Check System instead of the state Central Repository for Nevada Records of Criminal History.

Ninety percent of checks are completed in 90 seconds or less. For those that are not, the seller can take the gun with him or her while the check is being completed, provided the buyer and seller return to the dealer to complete the transfer.


The Background Check Initiative exempts certain transfers from the background check requirement:

  • Transfers by or to a law enforcement agency or a peace officer, security guard, or member of the armed forces acting within the course and scope of his or her employment or official duties;
  • Transfers of antique firearms;
  • Transfers between immediate family members, which means spouses and domes- tic partners and any of the following relations, whether by whole or half blood, adoption, or step-relation: parents, children, siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews.
  • Transfers to executors of estates or trusts that occur upon the death of the owner of a gun;
  • Temporary transfers for self-defense, hunting and trapping, target-shooting, and organized competitions and performances;
  • Temporary transfers that occur exclusively while in the presence of the transferor, provided the transferor has no reason to believe that the transferee is prohibited from having guns or will use the gun in a crime.