Senate Gun Control Agreement Adds ‘Investigative Period’ to Some Firearm Background Checks

background checks
AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane, File

The Senate gun control agreement that emerged Sunday adds an “investigative period” to some firearm background checks.

Breitbart News reported that the Senate agreement includes proposals such as a crackdown on straw purchases, funding to incentivize states to adopt, red flag laws, and deeper record searches for gun buyers under the age of 21, among other things.

The broadened record searches for gun buyers younger than 21 “requires an investigative period to review juvenile and mental health records.”

The agreement contains no stipulation for how long this “investigative period” may last.

On February 28, 2019, NPR noted that House Democrats were pushing to change National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) checks so as to allow longer extended review periods.

The FBI conducts NICS checks on retail gun purchasers. The checks are designed to be completed quickly, but the FBI can take up to three business days to conduct the check if they believe they need to see more records. This means a NICS check either returns a pass or a fail, or it signals a need for an extended review of records.

On August 5, 2019, Business Insider noted that the Democrat-controlled House passed the Enhanced Background Checks Act to extend NICS reviews to ten days. The Republican-controlled Senate did not pass the Act.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkinsa weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio and a Turning Point USA Ambassador. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. Reach him at You can sign up to get Down Range at


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.