Last week there was an issue where an individual was contacted by the ATF in an effort to seize his Title II firearms because of an irregularity with his Trust. A Gun Trust Lawyer® reviewed, amended, and restated the trust in question, creating a valid and enforceable trust that deals with the unique issues of NFA Firearms ownership, transfer, and possession. The BATFE had a justifiable reason to pursue the forfeiture action and the original reports on the subguns forum were accurate. After discussions with the BATFE and presentation of a valid Trust the BATFE decided to cease and desist their forfeiture action at this time and the individual is no longer in jeopardy of having his items seized, being arrested, or being fined. The BATFE and individual have requested that the details not be disclosed. The BATFE does not want to jeopardize similar ongoing investigations involving invalid trusts. We can state that the issues involved with this action have been covered elsewhere on this website.
If you created a trust with Quicken or Legal Zoom, you should follow Legal Zoom’s and Intuit’s advice and have your trust reviewed by an attorney to avoid potential problems. The creators of these programs did not anticipate that individuals would be using the documents in situations that could result in criminal liability.
You may choose to have the trust reviewed to determine if the trust is valid, or reviewed to see if there are issues with the NFA that are not dealt with in your trust, but either way it is important to have your trust reviewed by someone who is familiar with estate planning as well as the NFA.