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Old 03-02-2018, 02:10 AM   #1
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Default Trust vs Individual

This may have been discussed more in depth here and I am just missing it but is there much of an advantage to going the trust route over the individual route anymore?

I do not have kids nor a wife with any interest in using any NFA items without me being around. As a matter of fact she is not into firearms at all. Though that is another story in itself. At this point I do not see what advantage a trust would hold for me anymore. Especially since you will need to be finger printed regardless of method used.

Am I missing anything here as to the advantages/disadvantages of one over the other? Let me know.
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Old 03-02-2018, 11:18 AM   #2
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In your situation probably no advantage.
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Old 03-02-2018, 12:07 PM   #3
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You could probably just do individual over trust then. Your NFA items can be transferred tax free on a Form 5 when you die to someone on your will.

Individual approval times are shorter than trusts right now.
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Old 03-02-2018, 12:22 PM   #4
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With a trust if "the owner of the gun" is sued, you - the individual - won't lose your house / car / everything else.


This is why trucking/train/airline companies create a separate "subcompany" to "own" each vehicle.

As only a single item is "owned" by said "company", in a lawsuit, the larger company's overall holdings are safe.


Also, with a trust, if you put your friends on as "trust officers", they can legally have fun, too.
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Old 03-02-2018, 03:47 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by nalioth View Post
With a trust if "the owner of the gun" is sued, you - the individual - won't lose your house / car / everything else.


This is why trucking/train/airline companies create a separate "subcompany" to "own" each vehicle.

As only a single item is "owned" by said "company", in a lawsuit, the larger company's overall holdings are safe.


Also, with a trust, if you put your friends on as "trust officers", they can legally have fun, too.
You need to do some reading up on law. Having your gun in a trust in no way shelters you and your personal assets from a lawsuit.


People tend to put items into trusts to protect them from creditors in case you get sued and have judgement against you however even those trusts are subject to collection if you lose a lawsuit.

In the case of a firearm registered under a trust you would be the beneficiary of the trust and if the beneficiary of the trust was the involved in the situation that prompted the lawsuit you as the beneficiary would be sued.


A corporation or an LLC however partly shields you from liability though I doubt having your firearm registered under an LLC would prevent a lawyer from giving it a shot.

Last edited by def90; 03-02-2018 at 03:53 PM.
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Old 03-02-2018, 03:54 PM   #6
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Also, your friends can have all the fun they want with your SBR registered to you as an individual. You just have to be present, which really just makes for more fun...
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Old 03-02-2018, 04:10 PM   #7
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It doesn't matter if your wife likes guns or not. Say you leave the house to go get a pack of smokes and she stays at home. If you have a suppressor out in the open, she can be considered "in possession" of it. If you have an SBR locked up but she has access to the key or knows the combination, the lawman can still say she's in possession of it. Adding her to a trust can help cover her ass.

The way mine's setup, my ole lady is on the trust. Then when I file a form1 or 4, I send all my paperwork and include a piece of paper that removes everybody but myself. That means I don't have to send in pictures and fingerprints for anybody but myself. Once my stamp(s) come in, I tear up the paper and she's back on the trust. I was on the phone a couple days ago with the ATF agents working on some of my forms. They said they've processed thousands of forms like this and their own legal team says its fine.

So given that you can file that way, the only downsides I see for filing with a trust is that it makes the average processing time higher and you have to print out 2 extra sheets of paper when you file.
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Old 03-02-2018, 05:34 PM   #8
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^^ I thought the new rules require fingerprints/background checks for anyone added to the trust?
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Old 03-02-2018, 07:30 PM   #9
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^^ I thought the new rules require fingerprints/background checks for anyone added to the trust?
Your statement is true, at the time of purchase/registration of your stamped item with NFA. The trust is yours to change whenever you feel like it in-between those times. The only time ATF gets involved is when you purchase and register a new item in the trust. Looks like GP is changing the trust in-between purchases, which is perfectly legal. Should his wife still be on the trust a the time of new purchase/registration, she would have to submit photo and prints, but he modifies the trust right before the new submission, and then modifies back after submittal. ATF does not need to be notified of any and all changes to your trust--just the snapshot in time when you submit for a new stamp.
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Old 03-04-2018, 11:35 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by giantpune View Post

The way mine's setup, my ole lady is on the trust. Then when I file a form1 or 4, I send all my paperwork and include a piece of paper that removes everybody but myself. That means I don't have to send in pictures and fingerprints for anybody but myself. Once my stamp(s) come in, I tear up the paper and she's back on the trust. I was on the phone a couple days ago with the ATF agents working on some of my forms. They said they've processed thousands of forms like this and their own legal team says its fine.

So given that you can file that way, the only downsides I see for filing with a trust is that it makes the average processing time higher and you have to print out 2 extra sheets of paper when you file.
That's a game changer! I didn't know that could be done. Very interesting. Thanks for the tip!
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Old 03-04-2018, 06:05 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by giantpune View Post
It doesn't matter if your wife likes guns or not. Say you leave the house to go get a pack of smokes and she stays at home. If you have a suppressor out in the open, she can be considered "in possession" of it. If you have an SBR locked up but she has access to the key or knows the combination, the lawman can still say she's in possession of it. Adding her to a trust can help cover her ass.

The way mine's setup, my ole lady is on the trust. Then when I file a form1 or 4, I send all my paperwork and include a piece of paper that removes everybody but myself. That means I don't have to send in pictures and fingerprints for anybody but myself. Once my stamp(s) come in, I tear up the paper and she's back on the trust. I was on the phone a couple days ago with the ATF agents working on some of my forms. They said they've processed thousands of forms like this and their own legal team says its fine.

So given that you can file that way, the only downsides I see for filing with a trust is that it makes the average processing time higher and you have to print out 2 extra sheets of paper when you file.
That is what I need to do!

What is the piece of paper you send that removes everyone but yourself?
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Old 03-04-2018, 06:14 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by giantpune View Post
It doesn't matter if your wife likes guns or not. Say you leave the house to go get a pack of smokes and she stays at home. If you have a suppressor out in the open, she can be considered "in possession" of it. If you have an SBR locked up but she has access to the key or knows the combination, the lawman can still say she's in possession of it. Adding her to a trust can help cover her ass.

The way mine's setup, my ole lady is on the trust. Then when I file a form1 or 4, I send all my paperwork and include a piece of paper that removes everybody but myself. That means I don't have to send in pictures and fingerprints for anybody but myself. Once my stamp(s) come in, I tear up the paper and she's back on the trust. I was on the phone a couple days ago with the ATF agents working on some of my forms. They said they've processed thousands of forms like this and their own legal team says its fine.

So given that you can file that way, the only downsides I see for filing with a trust is that it makes the average processing time higher and you have to print out 2 extra sheets of paper when you file.
I'm sorry, but the first paragraph of your post is unfounded and is just simply not true. Individuals have owned NFA firearms for over 80 years, and if your scenario was based in reailty, there would be prisons filled of NFA owners by now. Also, there is no requirement to have a safe in the NFA.
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Old 03-05-2018, 09:21 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by sawgunner73 View Post
I'm sorry, but the first paragraph of your post is unfounded and is just simply not true. Individuals have owned NFA firearms for over 80 years, and if your scenario was based in reailty, there would be prisons filled of NFA owners by now. Also, there is no requirement to have a safe in the NFA.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constructive_possession
There are countless examples of felons going to trial for being in the same house or car as a gun. Sometimes they get off, sometimes they don't. But it always involves a trip to jail and lawyers.

Quote:
In general, courts can find that a felon had constructive possession of a firearm where:

- The felon knew that the firearm was in the home; and
- Had the ability and opportunity to exert control over the firearm

Thus, if your wife keeps a gun unlocked in her nightstand, and you know it is there, a prosecutor may well charge you with possession of the firearm even if you never touched the gun.
We have heard of people getting in hot water for constructive possession of NFA items. I can't say I've heard of more than like 1 a year. But it does happen.

ETA -
https://blog.princelaw.com/2009/07/0...th-or-reality/
http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/201...ands-required/

Last edited by giantpune; 03-05-2018 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 03-05-2018, 12:47 PM   #14
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It’s not illegal for me to keep a properly registered NFA firearm in my house, regardless of who else resides in the house. Constructive possession would not apply as there is no illegal activity taking place.

I can mail my silencer or SBRs across the country to be repaired, and there would be numerous postal or UPS employees in possession of my NFA firearms, and it would be perfectly legal.
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Old 03-05-2018, 01:38 PM   #15
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I can mail my silencer or SBRs across the country to be repaired, and there would be numerous postal or UPS employees in possession of my NFA firearms, and it would be perfectly legal.
That's allowed because the ATF explicitly allows you to ship NFA items to an FFL for repair. Its not considered a transfer. They also have explicit laws and rules for private and contract shipping companies.

https://www.atf.gov/firearms/docs/at...ter-9/download
https://www.atf.gov/resource-center/...aspdf/download
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Old 03-05-2018, 02:21 PM   #16
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I can mail my silencer or SBRs across the country to be repaired, and there would be numerous postal or UPS employees in possession of my NFA firearms, and it would be perfectly legal.
I see we have another member who's ignorant of the law.

The mail service & commercial shippers operate under a law that I can't remember the name of that removes them from "ownership" or "possession" of the items they've been given for transport.


Now if Boney Brown steals it from the UPS system, he is "in possession" and will be charged accordingly ( if caught )
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Old 03-05-2018, 10:01 PM   #17
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The takeaway from this is the ATF NFA branch is not the custodian or administrator of your trust. They get a courtesy copy when you submit your request for stamp. It can change multiple times before and even directly after the submittal, without the need to notify ATF of any changes.
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Old 03-05-2018, 10:45 PM   #18
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What is the piece of paper you send that removes everyone but yourself?
I used NFAlawyers.com for my trust. They have a copy of the ammendment form and the instructions on their site (https://nfalawyers.com/new-41f-updat...wyers-clients/). The ATF agent I spoke to mentioned this form and the nfalawyer.com website specifically by name. They know it well there.

Seeing as the form is a legal document, I'd verify with whatever lawyer wrote your trust before using the exact NFAlawyer wording to ammend a trust somebody else wrote.
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Old 03-12-2018, 05:15 PM   #19
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Thanks guys this was pretty much what I was thinking.

#1- No real benefit to me going one route over the other
#2- I had heard about the issue of someone else having access to the safe where the NFA item is being stored. It is a bit of a stretch and most likely would be a compounded charge for some other charges. But when dealing with the ATF there is always the POSSIBILITY of just about anything.
#3- I may do the trust route and use the form to add/remove trustees as necessary when submitting forms.

Is there anything else I am missing?
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Old 03-13-2018, 09:16 PM   #20
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The mail service & commercial shippers operate under a law that I can't remember the name of that removes them from "ownership" or "possession" of the items they've been given for transport.
"common carrier"?
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Old 03-13-2018, 09:48 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nalioth View Post
The mail service & commercial shippers operate under a law that I can't remember the name of that removes them from "ownership" or "possession" of the items they've been given for transport.
"common carrier"?
That is another name for "commercial shippers". It is not the name of the law that protects them from "possessing" the vast numbers of firearms they handle each day.
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Old 03-16-2018, 10:53 PM   #22
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Your statement is true, at the time of purchase/registration of your stamped item with NFA. The trust is yours to change whenever you feel like it in-between those times. The only time ATF gets involved is when you purchase and register a new item in the trust. Looks like GP is changing the trust in-between purchases, which is perfectly legal. Should his wife still be on the trust a the time of new purchase/registration, she would have to submit photo and prints, but he modifies the trust right before the new submission, and then modifies back after submittal. ATF does not need to be notified of any and all changes to your trust--just the snapshot in time when you submit for a new stamp.
So:

1.) Create trust, put self on it
2.) Send in first NFA paperwork
3.) After stamp is received, add spouse onto trust
4.) Remove spouse right before sending next NFA item paperwork in
5.) Add spouse back when next stamp returned

Right?

#3-5 confuses me a bit. How do you modify the trust to add/remove someone as a trustee? If someone is added/removed before submitting a Form 1 or 4 the ATF never needs to be told they were removed right? So the form revoking their trustee status is between the parties?
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:20 AM   #23
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I'm sure there are plenty of other options but I just set mine up with NFALawyer. They include an amendment form to your trust that you sign and date when you submit your trust. This for makes you the sole trustee of your trust. Upon receiving your stamp just tear up the amendment and you are back to the original document.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:47 PM   #24
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Not to get to far off topic, but with a trust can you continue to pass on NFA items forever even if they become illegal in your state, township or country?

Can you pass on items legally to your children with just an individual NFA ownership even if they become illegal in your state, township or country?

Would not want to drop lets say... $5,000.00 on NFA items for them not to be passed down from generation to generation.

Trying to figure out the best course of action.

OP, perhaps your children will gain interest in rifles or NFA items in the coming years?

Can NFA items be moved from individual into a trust without any hassle?
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Old 03-17-2018, 06:41 PM   #25
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Not to get to far off topic, but with a trust can you continue to pass on NFA items forever even if they become illegal in your state, township or country?

Can you pass on items legally to your children with just an individual NFA ownership even if they become illegal in your state, township or country?
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Old 03-17-2018, 08:25 PM   #26
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Guess I need to research the topic more.

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Old 03-17-2018, 08:45 PM   #27
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Guess I need to research the topic more.

The basics of the law?

Naw, just start a bunch of businesses - each under a trust.

Use them to launder money & tell everybody you're using them to launder money ( but it's okay, cuz they're "trust entities" )


A trust will not shield you from the law.
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Old 03-18-2018, 12:43 PM   #28
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Is it true that if I own form1/form 4 items as an individual now and I decide to make a trust and transfer the items to the trust, that essentially it would require me to pay another $200 per item and go through the whole process again to get them in the trust?
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Old 03-18-2018, 01:08 PM   #29
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The basics of the law?

Naw, just start a bunch of businesses - each under a trust.

Use them to launder money & tell everybody you're using them to launder money ( but it's okay, cuz they're "trust entities" )


A trust will not shield you from the law.
That's what I was asking.

Scenario:
My state makes SBR and Suppressors illegal...
that would make it illegal to transfer onto my children even if the said items are in a trust.

Looking to step into the big leagues this year, but trying to get learned up.

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Old 03-18-2018, 01:12 PM   #30
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Is it true that if I own form1/form 4 items as an individual now and I decide to make a trust and transfer the items to the trust, that essentially it would require me to pay another $200 per item and go through the whole process again to get them in the trust?
Yes, because ownership is being transferred.

Quote:
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That's what I was asking.

Scenario:
My state makes SBR and Suppressors illegal...
that would make it illegal to transfer onto my children even if the said items are in a trust.

Looking to step into the big leagues this year, but trying to get learned up.

It would also make it illegal for your trust to possess.
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