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What Actually Is A Gun Trust?


A gun trust is a method to hold firearms that can accomplish several goals. It allows a person to hold and transfer firearms that are heavily regulated by federal laws and to be able to share those firearms with other users in a way that is not possible with individual ownership.

Why Should I Have A Gun Trust?

If you have a firearm that is regulated by the federal government, then the gun trust accomplishes these goals of allowing multiple owners or multiple users. It avoids any transfer fees of that firearm at your death if you are leaving those firearms to a beneficiary, and it facilitates future transfers to other authorized owners of those firearms.

Do I Have To File A Copy Of My Gun Trust With My State?

Generally, not. However, it does have to be sent to the federal regulating agency (the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives) when the trust is created and each time a new firearm is transferred to the trust.

Will My Trust Appear In A Law Enforcement Database?

No, it will not. Even with the trust, there are individuals who must qualify to hold the firearm. And those are the individuals that would show up in any database of registered owners. So, the people who have the authority to possess these firearms would be the ones who would show up if that serial number on that firearm was looked up by any law enforcement agency.

Do I Have To Submit Any Annual Reports Or Pay Any Annual Fees To Keep My Trust Active?

No. As with most other trusts, once it is in place, it is a permanent document and it does not need to be updated or maintained in any way unless there are changes that the person wants to make.

Why Should I Use A Gun Trust Over A Corporation Or LLC?

Corporations and LLCs can do much the same as a gun trust can. However, because they are created pursuant to state’s statutory authority, they must be registered with the state, must submit annual reports to the state and must pay an annual franchise tax of approximately $800 a year to the state. A gun trust does not have any of these requirements.

Can I Let Others Use The NFA Weapons In My Trust?

Yes, as long as they would be able to qualify for a National Firearms Act license. Anyone who would otherwise qualify to register the firearm can be listed as a trustee or a current beneficiary of the trust and they would be able to then possess and use the firearms.

What If I Were To Become Incapacitated?

As with any other trust, we put provisions in a gun trust so that if the creator of the trust or any trustee becomes incapacitated, there are other trustees who can take over as the managing person in the trust, as a successor trustee. We will also have provisions in the trust for how the guns would be transferred upon that person’s death.

For more information on Gun Trusts In California, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (626) 385-6303 today.

Newell & Havens Attorney At Law

Call for a free assessment of your needs
(626) 385-6303.

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