Recently in North Carolina - Gun Trust Lawyer Category

December 11, 2014

Revisions to North Carolina and Gun Trust Transfers and Machine Gun Update Under the NFA

North Carolina NFA Trust and Gun Trust Update:

In Dec 2014, a Gun Trust transfer of a Machine Gun was rejected by the ATF when it stated "In Accordance with NC General Statute 14-409. Please remember that your Form 4 must state a reason other than for scientific and/or experimentation or "in accordance with 14-409" to comply with The January 11, 2013 email from Dana Pickles. We are in the process of verifying this and will update this blog if anything changes.

A recent email from Dana Pickles at the US Dept. Of Justice Bureau of ATF NFA Branch stated the following changes for North Carolina

Effective January 11 2013 the ATF is handling North Carolina transfers as follows:

Machine Gun transfers from a dealer to a dealer on a Form 3 no longer require a North Carolina Sheriff permission letter to possess the Machine Gun (MG)

From a Dealer to a Gun Trust using a Form 4.
If the Form 4 states that the MG is being "acquired for scientific research and/or experimentation" or "in accordance with 14-409", then you will still need North Carolina Sheriff permission letter to possess Machine Gun.

But, If the reason on your Form 4 states a reason OTHER than "in accordance with 14-409" or "for scientific and/or experimental use" then the North Carolina Machine Gun Letter or permission from the Sheriff is not required.

This means you should not state "in accordance with 14-409" or "for scientific and/or experimental use" on a Machine Gun transfer in the state of North Carolina

All other NFA transfers on a Form 4 - no longer require the reason to state "In accordance with 14-288.8" to approve the transfer.

August 8, 2013

Suppressors and Hunting in NC - Legal as of 10/1/2013

North Carolina will become the next state to legalize hunting with a suppressor. As of 10/1/2013, a suppressor will be legal to use on firearms while hunting. The NC Wildlife Resource Commission made the changes which are not found in the NC statutes and also not found in the in the NC Hunting Regulations which were printed before the legislation passed. here is a link to the legislation as well as the press release. If you plan on hunting in NC after October 1, 2013, I would suggest keeping a copy of the legislation and press release with you as many police officers may not know that it will be legal to hunt with a suppressor after 10/1/2013.

Every time a state legalizes hunting with a suppressor, the sales of suppressors in that state dramatically increase which creates a longer approval wait time. Given that current approval times in most states is more than 6 months. it would be advisable to purchase your silencer now if you have any plans on hunting with a silencer in 2014. Remember that if you use a Gun Trust, you do not have to obtain your local sheriffs permission to purchase a silencer as well as creating the flexibility to have multiple authorized users. There are many things that are different with Title II firearms (lile suppressors) and it would be a good idea to request our free report on What is a Gun Trust and Why you might need one.

July 1, 2013

Transferring firearms to a Gun Trust without Criminal Sanctions

As more lawyers begin to dabble with Gun Trusts we are seeing many who do not understand firearms and their unique nature which can often involve criminal penalties related to the improper transfer, possession, and use related to firearms or ammunition.

While it is fine to transfer a pair or sox, coins, most personal property to your trust without doing anything other than assigning it, the transfer of restricted items like firearms or ammunition is a different matter. If you can sell a gun to an individual in your state without going through a dealer you should be able to transfer a firearm to your trust without going through dealer. This is the case in most states.

In a few states like California, Colorado, Connecticut, DC, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania where all personal transfers of some or all firearms must go through a background check, there may be no exception for transferring a firearm to a trust even if it is your own trust. Sure an argument could be made that there is no transfer and as such you should not have to go through a dealer, but why would one take the risk.

Several lawyers in California have recently been having discussions over such a topic. They even suggest that a transfer to a joint trust could be problematic because there are multiple owners. While a Gun Trust with multiple owners can be problematic, it is not for this reason.

In order to be valid, a Gun Trust must be funded, which involves transferring some property into the trust. The discussion between several California lawyers introduces an interesting question: Would it violate the California statute if you owned a firearm separately from you spouse, and then tried to transfer the firearm into a trust that named your spouse as a co-trustee or co-settlor?

While several of the lawyers point out, certain transfers are exempt under the statute. The exempt transfers in California include transfers between members of the same immediate family, including spouses. The transfer of a grantor's property to himself, as trustee of his own trust, is not considered a transfer. So, a couple that jointly owns a firearm, and transfers that firearm into a trust that names both parties as co-settlors, would not really be a "transfer." This is really just a declaration of trust.

On the other hand, as the discussion continues, a firearm owned separately by one spouse would have to be transmuted to community property before it could be transferred to a trust with co-settlors in order to comply with the statute.

While California may have such exemptions involving trusts it is not clear how they apply to firearms or if the legislative intent of the laws may change the interpretation of transfers to a trust when dealing with the transfer of firearms. This is why in jurisdictions where private transfers are required to go through a dealer, we always recommend doing so in order to comply with governing statutes. It is better to be safe than sorry.

One exception might be where someone owned a pre ban firearm as an individual and wants to put the pre ban firearm in their trust to maintain ownership and possession where it would not otherwise be permitted. This situation might justify the expense necessary for a proper determination on the subject. For most people, the relatively minor cost of using a dealer to transfer a firearm makes the decision easy.

Additionally experienced Gun Trust Lawyers® know that firearms rights are very important to our clients. They do not want others who may be involved with the trust to be able to take away the firearms or their ability to use them. It is for this reason that we draft our trusts with special powers for the Settlor. It is foreseeable that a multi-settlor trust could create a conflict of interest amongst your clients.

While we have stated many times that any valid trust can purchase or own firearms, it is issues like these that make it clear that a regular trust should not be used to purchase Title I or Title II firearms. If you are married, or live in a state that have many restrictions on firearms, legal support by a local Gun Trust Lawyer® is important. You will also find that the experience of the lawyer in dealing with Gun Trusts is important.

We have been drafting Gun Trusts for 6 years and have drafted over 5000 Gun Trusts across the United States. If you would like more information on a Gun Trust in your state, just fill out the contact us form on this website and we will send a free report on Gun Trusts.

May 29, 2013

Where can I hunt with Suppressors (Silencers): Updated List:

Thumbnail image for 50calsilencer.jpgWhile in some states, it is illegal to hunt with a Silencer, in the following states it is legal to hunt with a suppressor (often referred to as a "silencer").

In states where hunting with suppressors have been legalized, we have seen substantial increases in the sales of suppressors and the wait times for approval from the ATF has also increased. Many states that have legalized suppressors still have CLEOs who refuse to sign for individuals to purchase them. A NFA Gun Trust or a more flexible Gun trust can not only avoid the CLEO signature requirement in most states but can also provide many benefits to firearms owners and their families. To learn about the benefits please fill out the contact us form at the top of this page and request information on what a gun trust is and how they may benefit you.

Remember these laws change frequently, so please verify this with your state prior to hunting with a suppressor.

Alabama (as of 5/3/14)
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
Colorado
Georgia (as of 7/1/2014)
Idaho
Kansas
Kentucky
Maryland
Mississippi
Missouri
Nebraska
Nevada
New Mexico
North Carolina as of 10/1/2013
North Dakota
Oregon
Oklahoma as of 11/1/2012
Pennsylvania
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming (as of 7/1/2013)

Many state restricted the use of suppressors in regards to anti poaching regulations. Some other states like Montana allow the use of Silencers for Varmint but not hunting. If you know of other states where it is legal to hunt with a silencer please let us know.

Disclaimer: This document represents a collection of published law and research on the topic of hunting with suppressors and regulations about the same. It should not be viewed as legal advise as these laws change frequently and the document you are looking at may not be up to date or an accurate representation of the laws at the time you read it. You should check with your Gun Trust Lawyer prior to hunting in any state with a suppressor as there may be other requirement and permits necessary to hunt with a suppressor in a state.

Updated 5/7/14

January 2, 2013

Confusion in North Carolina regarding Machine Gun Ownership

We have received numerous calls and emails regarding the December 2010 change in the laws in NC based on the poorly worded changes to NC:

NCGS Section 288.8 (b)(5) allows MG ownership for:

Persons who lawfully possess or own a weapon as defined in subsection (c) of this section in compliance with 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53, §§ 5801‑5871. Nothing in this subdivision shall limit the discretion of the sheriff in executing the paperwork required by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms for such person to obtain the weapon.

NCGS Section 14-409(b) provides in pertinent part:

a person who lawfully possesses or owns a weapon as defined by Subsection (a) of this section in compliance with 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53, §§ 5801‑5871. Nothing in this subdivision shall limit the discretion of the sheriff in executing the paperwork required by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms for such person to obtain the weapon.

The problem is that these provisions don't seem to allow acquisition, only continued ownership or possession. However, the statutes go on to say that sheriff can refuse to sign off to on the forms required to obtain ownership.

I have spoken to several NC lawyers about this, they all agree that the safest thing to do until further clarification develops is the have the sheriff sign off with the Machine Gun Permit which is different than the CLEO signature required for individual ownership of Title II firearms.

In addition, it appears that if the machine gun was lawfully purchased in another state, there would not be the need to obtain the sheriff's signature on a machine gun permit to purchase a machine gun as it was already owned.

This only applies to Machine Guns and not other Title II firearms. With the upcoming proposed changes to federal laws regarding assault weapons, it is still a good idea to transfer all existing firearms into a Gun Trust in states like NC that permit such transfers.

April 19, 2012

Moving or Traveling to North Carolina With NFA Firearms

We were recently contacted by someone who wanted to move their NFA firearms to NC from another state. After filling out the Form 20, they received a rejection notice stating that the form needed to state the following in block 5 to be in compliance with NC state requirements.

Block 5 should contain "In accordance with NC general statute 14-288.8 & 14-409"

So if you are planning on traveling to NC or moving there, it appears that you will need this language before the ATF will approve the permission to move or travel.

April 19, 2012

Moving or Traveling to North Carolina With NFA Firearms

We were recently contacted by someone who wanted to move their NFA firearms to NC from another state. After filling out the Form 20, they received a rejection notice stating that the form needed to state the following in block 5 to be in compliance with NC state requirements.

Block 5 should contain "In accordance with NC general statute 14-288.8 & 14-409"

So if you are planning on traveling to NC or moving there, it appears that you will need this language before the ATF will approve the permission to move or travel.

March 15, 2012

Moving to North Carolina with NFA Firearms

Recently we have seen the ATF deny ATF form 20's unless you include "In accordance with North Carolina General Statute 14-288.8" in Block 5 - The Reason for Transportation of the Firearms - (Example Permanent change of Address)

While this should not apply to silencers, it will not hurt to include the additional language on all transfers of NFA firearms to the state of North Carolina

If you are moving or traveling to North Carolina you might include something like the following language in Block 5:
Moving to North Carolina in accordance with North Carolina General Statute 14-288.8

Traveling to North Carolina in accordance with North Carolina General Statute 14-288.8

February 20, 2012

North Carolina Gun Trust Lawyer and Firearms Permits

Pistol_Permit_Application.jpgSome of our clients in North Carolina regularly ask about pistol permits and trusts. In response to this, we asked a North Carolina Gun Trust Lawyer ® to explain how the North Carolina Pistol Permit (Click for a Sample Permit) works and what is prohibited. Here is his response:

North Carolina G.S. Section 14-402 requires that any person obtaining a pistol by purchase or other transfer must first get a permit from the sheriff in his county of residence. The sheriff conducts a criminal background check to make sure the receipt of the pistol would not violate state or federal law. Trustees of NFA trusts are not exempt from this requirement, so for any handguns transferred to or purchased by a gun trust a permit must first be obtained. Section 14-403 states that a permit shall be issued to "any person, firm or corporation," which is broad enough to cover trustees. Thus, if the trustee passes the background check, there shouldn't be a problem in getting the permit.

§ 14‑402. Sale of certain weapons without permit forbidden. (a) It is unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation in this State to sell, give away, or transfer, or to purchase or receive, at any place within this State from any other place within or without the State any pistol unless: (i) a license or permit is first obtained under this Article by the purchaser or receiver from the sheriff of the county in which the purchaser or receiver resides; or (ii) a valid North Carolina concealed handgun permit is held under Article 54B of this Chapter by the purchaser or receiver who must be a resident of the State at the time of the purchase.


Once of the benefits of working with a Gun Trust Lawyer® is that should you move from one state to another, you can make any changes to your Gun Trust that are necessary to keep you in compliance with both state and federal laws. Similar situations occur if an authorized user is located in another state or relocates after the trust is created or funded.

July 17, 2011

North Carolina, NFA, Trusts, & Machine Guns

The NFATCA had an article about a revision to NC Law that will put to rest the controversy over the use of Trusts and also apparently drop the Machine Gun Permit for residents of the state of North Carolina North Carolina HB650 was signed into law on June 23rd, 2011 and will become effective on December 1st 2011

H650 [Ratified] Page 5

SECTION 8. G.S. 14-288.8(b) reads as rewritten:

"(b) This section does not apply to:to any of the following:
(1) Persons exempted from the provisions of G.S. 14-269 with respect to any activities lawfully engaged in while carrying out their duties.

(2) Importers, manufacturers, dealers, and collectors of firearms, ammunition, or destructive devices validly licensed under the laws of the United States or the State of North Carolina, while lawfully engaged in activities authorized under their licenses.

(3) Persons under contract with the United States, the State of North Carolina, or any agency of either government, with respect to any activities lawfully engaged in under their contracts.

(4) Inventors, designers, ordnance consultants and researchers, chemists, physicists, and other persons lawfully engaged in pursuits designed to enlarge knowledge or to facilitate the creation, development, or manufacture of weapons of mass death and destruction intended for use in a manner consistent with the laws of the United States and the State of North Carolina.

(5) Persons who lawfully possess or own a weapon as defined in subsection (c) of this section in compliance with 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53, §§ 5801-5871.
Nothing in this subdivision shall limit the discretion of the sheriff in executing the paperwork required by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms for such person to obtain the weapon."

SECTION 9. G.S. 14-409(b) reads as rewritten:

"(b) It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to manufacture, sell, give away, dispose of, use or possess machine guns, submachine guns, or other like weapons as defined by subsection (a) of this section: Provided, however, that this subsection shall not apply to the following:

Banks, merchants, and recognized business establishments for use in their respective places of business, who shall first apply to and receive from the sheriff of the county in which said business is located, a permit to possess the said weapons for the purpose of defending the said business;

officers and soldiers of the United States Army, when in discharge of their official duties, officers and soldiers of the militia when called into actual service, officers of the State, or of any county, city or town, charged with the execution of the laws of the State, when acting in the discharge of their official duties;

the manufacture, use or possession of such weapons for scientific or experimental purposes when such manufacture, use or possession is lawful under federal laws and the weapon is registered with a federal agency, and when a permit to manufacture, use or possess the weapon is issued by the sheriff of the county in which the weapon is located;

a person who lawfully possesses or owns a weapon as defined by subsection (a) of this section in compliance with 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53, §§ 5801‑5871. Nothing in this subdivision shall limit the discretion of the sheriff in executing the paperwork required by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms for such person to obtain the weapon.

Provided, further, that any bona fide resident of this State who now owns a machine gun used in former wars, as a relic or souvenir, may retain and keep same as his or her property without violating the provisions of this section upon his reporting said ownership to the sheriff of the county in which said person lives."

If you are looking to Get a Machine Gun in North Carolina, you will have to wait until December 1, 2011 unless your Sheriff will issue you a permit.  For those who feel that current NC statutes do not permit the use of Trusts, you can starting using them on December 1, 2011.  Our North Carolina Gun Trust Lawyer® has seen no provision in the old law which does not permit a Trust to own or purchase NFA firearms and has been providing them for several years without any rejections by the ATF.  If you would like help creating a Gun Trust in North Carolina, Contact Us and we can give you more information on the process.

April 8, 2008

North Carolina (NC) What NFA Firearms can I own? Updated

North Carolina NFA Class 3 firearms
There are several type of Class 3 items that are restricted by the National Firearms Act.

Each state can impose additional restrictions on the sale, purchase, and transfer of class 3 firearms in addition to the compliance that is required with the national Firearms Act.

In North Carolina you can own the following items that are regulated the the National Firearms Act

Machine Guns*
Silencers
Any Other Weapon (AOW)
Destructive Devices (DD)
Short Barreled Shotguns (SBS)
Short Barreled Rifles (SBR)
In North Carolina you cannot own the following NFA restricted items.
None

In North Carolina Machine Gun ownership, possession, or transfer is only legal for

  1. Banks, merchants, and recognized business establishments for use in their respective places of business, who shall first apply to and receive from the sheriff of the county in which said business is located, a permit to possess the said weapons for the purpose of defending the said business;
  2. officers and soldiers of the United States Army, when in discharge of their official duties, officers and soldiers of the militia when called into actual service, officers of the State, or of any county, city or town, charged with the execution of the laws of the State, when acting in the discharge of their official duties;
  3. the manufacture, use or possession of such weapons for scientific or experimental purposes when such manufacture, use or possession is lawful under federal laws and the weapon is registered with a federal agency, and when a permit to manufacture, use or possess the weapon is issued by the sheriff of the county in which the weapon is located.

Provided, further, that any bona fide resident of this State who now owns a machine gun used in former wars, as a relic or souvenir, may retain and keep same as his or her property without violating the provisions of this section upon his reporting said ownership to the sheriff of the county in which said person lives.

Follow this link to find out more about North Carolina and NFA restrictions on Class 3 Firearms