Articles Posted in NFA (National Firearms Act)

One of the most common questions Class 3 SOT Dealers ask has finally been addressed by the ATF and should help clear the inconsistent answers given by local ATF offices.

Is a NICS check required when a Gun Trust is used to purchase firearms that are subject to the NFA?

Short Answer: Yes.

Michigan NFA Class 3 firearms

There are several type of Title II firearms which are sold by Class 3 SOT dealers that are restricted by the National Firearms Act.

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

In Michigan you can own the following Title II Firearms that are regulated the the National Firearms Act:

Machine Guns
Suppressors
Any Other Weapon (AOW) (only some)
Destructive Devices (DD)
Short Barreled Shotguns (SBS)  (See Below but Legal as of 3/28/14)
Short Barreled Rifles (SBR)  (See Below but Legal as of 3/28/14)

In Michigan you cannot own the following NFA restricted items.

 some AOW’s like Tasers or Stun Guns by private citizens whether or not they are class 3 items or the individual has a CCW permit

The Michigan State Police put together a legal update on SBR and SBS which describes the differences between those over 26 inches and those under 26 inches.
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Hawaii NFA Class 3 firearmsThere are several type of Title II firearms which are sold by Class 3 SOT FFLs that are restricted by the National Firearms Act.

Each state can impose additional restrictions on the sale, purchase, and transfer of these Title II firearms in addition to the compliance that is required with the National Firearms Act.

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

Individuals cannot own any NFA firearms which are kept within HI.

Tomorrow Sarah Gervase, with the NRA is presenting a summary of the major provisions of the NFA just before my presentation of the use of Gun Trusts as we provide many lawyers with information on Gun Trusts I wanted to highlight some of the major points of her talk with some exerts from her paper.

This presentation will focus mostly on individual buyers and transferors, as many of those in attendance at the Firearms Law Seminar have more personal interest in and interaction with individuals who collect or own these arms for their own enjoyment. There will be some basic information for dealers, manufacturers, and importers, however, and a future Seminar presentation can focus on those areas if there is sufficient interest. In the meantime, readers of these materials who need more in-depth information for dealers, manufacturers, and importers are encouraged to review ATF’s website at http://www.atf.gov for the latest relevant requirements.

A quick note about holding a client’s property. Be very careful about holding any firearms owned by a client or about accepting firearms as payment for services. Here’s a horror story. An attorney represented a man accused of bank robbery. The attorney took possession of the allegedly stolen money and a sawed-off shotgun. That attorney was suspended from the practice of law for 18 months for possessing a short-barreled shotgun used in a bank robbery. It was unprofessional conduct to take the fruits and instrumentalities of the crime. In re Richard R. Ryder, 381 F.2d 713 (4th Cir. 1967).
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On Friday May 3, 2013, the National Riffle Association is having The 16th Annual Firearms Law Seminar in Houston Texas. This seminar is primarily focused for lawyers who deal with firearms related issues in the practice. Over the past few years, the ATF has presented the panel on Trusts and ownership of Title II firearms. I have personally been to this presentation several times looking for guidance or changes in the law or its interpretation. Unfortunately the NFA portion of the seminars have been disappointing and have not offered any real guidance in dealing with the many issues that a Gun Trust should deal with. This year the NRA asked me to speak Gun Trusts. I plan on dealing with many of the ethical problems with traditional trusts as well as how to use Gun Trusts to protect your clients firearms from future legislative restrictions as well protecting the guns from loss due to confiscation that often surrounds criminal charges or claims of domestic violence and/or child abuse that often surround divorce.

Many people are still looking for NFA Trusts and have not realized the benefits of a Gun Trust over a trust that only deals with NFA Firearms. Look for more information on the NRA Firearms Law Seminar. For more information about the National Firearms Law Seminar, please call 1-877-NRF-LAWS
If you are a lawyer and plan on attending and would like more information on Gun Trusts or have a question you would like me to address at the seminar, use the contact form and I will try to incorporate it into the Gun Trust Presentation portion of the NRA Firearms Law Seminar.

Today we received another copy of a Gun Store Generic NFA Trust that was provided to a customer of the shop. Not only was it a generic trust and did nothing to advise or protect the client from issues regarding the transfer, ownership, possession or use of TItle II firearms (sold by Class 3 dealers) but the trust itself was invalid as it did not comply with the requirements to create a valid trust in the State. While it may have been a valid trust in another state, each state has its own requirements for creating a valid trust. These requirements change and a trust that may have been valid a few years ago may not be valid under the current laws of the state. It is important to make sure your trust complies with the state’s requirements for creation of a valid trust. What is disturbing is that ATF approved transfers to this invalid trust.

Remember just because ATF approves a transfer, the agency is not stating that your trust is valid nor that you are legally able to be in possession of the firearms. If you have a free trust or a gun shop trust it is important to have it reviewed for legality as well as compliance with the ATF to make sure your document is valid and that your document does not instruct you or others to break the law in regards to regular firearms or those restricted by the NFA.

Gun Trust LawyerFunding a trust is a basic concept that is necessary for a trust to be valid. The legal concept is that the trust does not exist if there is nothing in the trust. A Gun Trust can be funded with a firearm, money, or any other asset. Typically a Gun Trust will be used to acquire firearms and is often used for Title II Firearms. When you put money in or assign money to the trust, you have funded it and it is now valid. If you never assign property to a trust, it can create problems.

For example, if your trust is unfunded, and you purchase a Title II Firearm from a dealer personally you will own it personally. An Assignment sheet may fund the trust, but if the AFT has not approved the assignment or an additional fee is not paid, you may have created a legal problem.

Funding a NFA trust, purchasing NFA Firearms, and proper use of a Gun Trust are very important to understand and something you should ask your Gun Trust Lawyer® about.

NFA Class 3 firearmsThere 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 Missouri you can own the following items that are regulated the the National Firearms Act

doj-seal-color-90x90.jpgThe US Department of Justice today announced that

A man in Berlin, Connecticut, was sentenced to 101 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for illegally possessing machine guns, a sawed-off shotgun, silencers, grenades and improvised explosive devices or IEDs.

These items are controlled by the National Firearms Act and you must purchase them using a Form 4 or manufacture them with a Form 1 and pay the tax. If you are in possession of them, are using them, or sell them without complying with the requirements you can face prison sentences and fines.

nfatca_logo.gifThe National Firearms Act Trade & Collectors Association (NFATCA) is the only organization that champions the interests of the entire NFA community. It doesn’t matter if you are a collector, a dealer, manufacturer, importer or just an enthusiast. We take on the issues that no other organization would even consider.

If you own or are planning on owning NFA firearms you should consider joining this organization.

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