Most North Americans may have forgotten that on January, 2000 President Bill Clinton proposed new legislation that would have required all American citizens to obtain a federal gun license. American handgun owners were outraged, as well as manufacturers, dealers and more than a few members of the U.S. Congress.
Although this national-level law would have been something new for the U.S., Canada was already under a countrywide gun law. On December 1, 1998 the Canada Firearms Act of 1995 was finally in full effect. The law in Canada requires that all citizens must have a Possession and Acquisition Licenses (PAL). Canadian gun owners quickly became very familiar with the extra license that they now had to have.
There is a comparatively extensive background check that is run on anyone looking to obtain a gun license in Canada. This helps to eliminate the potential threat from people who have been convicted of a previous gun crime. Also, any persons with a history of certain serious crimes or convictions, and those with mental health issues, have a little chance of receiving a gun license in Canada.