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Subject to narrow exceptions,1 Illinois generally requires a 72-hour waiting period before a seller can deliver a firearm to the purchaser.2 This waiting period begins to run at the time the purchaser applied to purchase the firearm. (“Application” is defined to mean “when a buyer and seller reach an agreement to purchase a firearm.”)3

For transfers through licensed dealers and at gun shows, the Illinois Department of State Police must approve the transfer or inform the dealer of the applicant’s ineligibility within these time periods.4

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  1. Illinois’ waiting period requirement generally does not apply to:

    1. The sale of a firearm to a law enforcement officer if the seller of the firearm knows that the purchaser is a law enforcement officer or the sale of a firearm to a person who desires to purchase a firearm for use in promoting the public interest incident to his or her employment as a bank guard, armed truck guard, or other similar employment;
    2. A mail order sale of a firearm from a federally licensed firearms dealer to a nonresident of Illinois under which the firearm is mailed to a federally licensed firearms dealer outside the boundaries of Illinois;
    3. The sale of a firearm to a federally licensed firearms dealer; or
    4. The transfer or sale of a rifle, shotgun, or other long gun to a resident registered competitor or attendee or non-resident registered competitor or attendee by any dealer licensed as a federal firearms dealer under Section 923 of the federal Gun Control Act of 1968 at competitive shooting events held at the World Shooting Complex sanctioned by a national governing body.

    720 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/24-3(A)(g).[]

  2. 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/24-3(A)(g).[]
  3. 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/24-3(A)(g).[]
  4. 430 Ill. Comp. Stat. 65/3.1; 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/24-3(A)(g).[]