What is a Gun Trust?:
A gun trust is a useful tool that can allows a gun owner the ability to share, buy, sell or transfer personal firearms as well as those regulated by the National Firearm Act under Title II.
A gun trust can avoid some of the federal transfer requirements and accomplish other goals as well:
What can you do with a Gun Trust:
- A Gun Trust will allow friends or relatives possess and use any of the weapons in the trust without issue. Anyone named a trustee under a trust will have the right to possess or use any of the weapons named in the trust. More than one person can be named a trustee.
- Avoid the hassle of transferring a firearm after the owner’s death. A gun held in trust will be owned by the trust after the owner’s death, which means anyone listed as a trustee or beneficiary will not have to pay the $200 transfer tax, file a transfer form with the ATF/BATF receive permission from the local chief law enforcement officer, or get fingerprinted and photographed. The firearm stays in the trust therefore allowing the trustees and beneficiaries to avoid the cumbersome transfer procedure.
- Assist the Executor of your estate. Not everyone is familiar with the procedures of lawfully owning a firearm. By naming a trustee well versed in state and federal gun laws, you can ensure that all aspects of your estate are handled properly.
- Avoid probate – Firearms held in trust do not have to go through the Courts and Probate procedure and are immediately available for distribution or use after the owner’s death.
What else can you do with a Gun Trust:
A Gun Trust will allow you to purchase and own any regulated firearm or equipment specified in Title II of the Gun Control Act of 1968. Some examples of these are, short barreled rifles and shotguns, suppressors, machine guns and “destructive devices” such as mortars and grenades.
Types of Weapons Held in Trust
Gun Trusts are commonly used for weapons that are regulated by Federal Law. The two laws that generally apply are: the National Firearms Act of 1934 (NFA) and a revision of that law, Title II of the Gun Control Act of 1968. Weapons specified in these laws are often called NFA or Title II firearms. NFA weapons include machine guns, silencers, short-barreled rifles, and short-barreled shotguns (including sawed-off shotguns), grenades, and others.
NFA weapons must have a serial number and be registered with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, commonly called the ATF or BATF. (A weapon that isn’t already registered, cannot be registered and it is illegal to own.) They can be possessed and used only by the registered owner. To transfer a registered firearm, the owner must get ATF approval and pay a $200 tax ($5 for some items).
Other federal laws also affect NFA weapons. For example, since 1986 it has been illegal to manufacture machine guns, and only those manufactured before that date may be legally purchased. (Firearm Owners Protection Act.) State laws may further restrict NFA firearms as well. Contact us for more information on setting up your own NFA Gun Trust.
Please contact our Gun Trust Attorneys at 804 257-7233.
4900 Cutshaw Avenue, Richmond VA 23230,
WEEK DAYS: 8:30am – 5:30pm
SATURDAY-SUNDAY: By appointment