Does a pawn shop have a legal right to hold my firearm because they are under new ownership?

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Does a pawn shop have a legal right to hold my firearm because they are under new ownership?

A pawn shop in Arizona that is in possession of my firearm will not release it to

me because they claim to be under new ownership and are having issues with the ATF. This has been going on for a month and my pawn ticket for the firearm expires soon. Also, they would not give me a date for when the issues would be resolved or provide me with any kind of receipt to indicate that I tried to reclaim it. Do they have a legal right to hold it? I am worried that when my

ticket expires, I will no longer have a legal right to reclaim my firearm.

Asked on November 21, 2018 under Business Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If they are telling the truth, they have the legal right and even the obligation to hold your firearm: they cannot violate firearm regulations or go against the ATF's instructions. Your interest in getting your firearm back cannot make them violate the law or their own legal obligations. Obviously, if they are lying, howeer, then you could sue them for either or both of a court order requiring the return of your gun and/or monetary compensation. So the first thing for you to do is to spend some more time and effort trying to get an answer from the ATF. If the ATF denies what the pawn shop claims, or you can't get any answer, then file a lawsuit.


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