Not interested in the internet judges/lawyers! If I want to buy a pistol from a friend from another state and it is not registered to him, why would I go through a ffl and register it to me?! Thanks, Tom Rhoads
"why would I go through a ffl and register it to me?!" Because its federal law. It is wholly illegal for anyone to transfer ANY firearm (handgun or long gun) to a non-licensed individual in another state, for whatever reason, whether they are your friend or not. Doing it any other way greatly increases the likelihood of an extended stay at the grey bar motel...
And depending on the laws of w/e state you are in, you may need a valid pistol permit to possess the gun as well.
I'm a regular old lawyer, not the internet variety. You can't legally buy a handgun from a resident of another state. Sure, if he's your buddy, likely no problem, but, if something goes south you could lose the right to own firearms of any type, and so could he.
What could go wrong? Well, if you use the gun for self defense, or get stopped by an officer who thinks you are wrongfully in possession or ..., and someone does a trace.
Someone will probably be along shortly to post the applicable Federal statutes, and I "think" they have been posted here not too awfully long ago.
I would not take the chance myself, but you have to make the decision.
I don't know if your state "registers" handguns, but in Florida and many others, all that happens is you fill out the 4473, pass the background check, pay a transfer fee, and the form stays with the FFL till he goes out of business.