The Communication from FBI

To all Iowa federal firearms licensees (FFL)

The purpose of this communication is to provide information to all Iowa FFLs on an upcoming change regarding the correct entity to contact when processing handgun transactions within the state of Iowa. 

Effective July 1, 2021, all Iowa FFLs will begin contacting the FBI Criminal Justice Information Services Division’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Section for all handgun transfers, unless the purchaser provides a valid permit to acquire or a valid carry concealed weapons permit. 

All Iowa FFLs will continue to contact the NICS Section for all long gun transfers as historically directed. 

The FFLs must continue to conduct a background check prior to the transfer of a firearm, unless one of the valid permits stated previously is presented.  This will ensure the eligibility of individuals according to federal and state laws.  This communication is merely providing direction to the FFLs in Iowa to advise of the change in processing a handgun background check. 

To initiate a handgun or long gun transfer in the state of Iowa after July 1, 2021, please contact:

NICS Section
Phone:  1-877-FBI-NICS (324-6427) or via the NICS E-Check at

The Interpretation

The FBI is making sure FFL (Federal Firearms License) holders understand that there may be people who no longer have the Iowa Permit to Carry or Iowa Permit to Acquire after July 1st, 2021 when they come to purchase or transfer a handgun.  They’re reminding dealers, that just like long guns (rifles, shotguns, etc.), a background check is required unless they have a permit.  Instead of ONLY doing this for long gun, dealers will now do this for handguns when a permit isn’t present.

Remember when the opposition to the Constitutional Carry bill attempted to make this a “background check bill” instead of understanding the truth and telling the truth?  Well, here is your proof, straight from the FBI.  Background checks continue.  Rather than taking place at the time of their permit application once every five years, the background checks will now take place at the dealer (FFL) location at EACH transaction, should the person/buyer opt to purchase without a permit.

The Truth

Iowa was the 19th state in the nation to adopt a form of Constitutional Carry.  In 17 of the previous 18 states, permits actually rose in issuance after the Constitutional basis for carrying was implemented/decided.  Let’s not lose our minds over drivel from folks who have no idea what they’re talking about.  Iowans are not magically void of character on July 1st.

Why our opposition believes we’ll all default to crime with the addition of freedom, I’ll never understand.  The only explanation I can muster stems from their flawed interpretation of freedom itself.  They think “freedom” somehow translates into whimsical and unaccountable actions.  “Freedom” doesn’t equate to a lack of moral restraint for us.  No, “freedom” means ethical choices and reasoning bound by consequences.

Our opponents seem to enjoy “freedom” from consequence, ironically, when we know the consequences are irrefutably bound to the choices we make.  Thus, the emphasis on good judgment on our part.  Constitutional Carry provides a platform for a net increase in the character of Iowans.  Making laws to restrict every decent person to the lowest common denominator among us is their way of governing Iowans.  That, my friends, is the punishment of the innocent.

Welcome to FREEDOM, Iowans.

In Liberty,

Michael Ware
IFC Chairman