More than 180 million applications for firearm transfers or permits have been subject to federal background checks since the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act became effective in 1994, says a new report from the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics. Through 2014, about 2.8 million applications were denied, 1.6 percent of the total. In 2014, there were nearly 15 million background checks, and only 193,000 purchases were denied.
BJS said that the 2014 total was down from an estimated 17.6 million in 2013. Of the 2014 denials, about 91,000 were turned down by the FBI and 102,000 by state and local agencies. The most common reason for the FBI to deny an application was that the applicant had a felony conviction; that was true in 42 percent of cases.