Category Archives: Gun Trusts

Benefits to Purchasing an NFA Trust

Even with the new requirements of ATF Rule 41F, there are still significant benefits to purchasing an NFA Trust. (1) You may name other individuals as Co-Trustees so that they are permitted to use the Class 3/Title II weapons.  Note that if you purchase the weapon individually, no one else is permitted to use item.  (2) You will name at least one beneficiary to receive the items upon your death or incapacity, thereby passing the items to the person YOU designate.  (3) The named beneficiary will complete ATF Form 5 and will not have to pay the tax stamp to transfer the items into their name.

ATF Rule 41F

As of July 13, 2016, the new ATF Rule 41F went into effect. This new rule applies to all “responsible persons” who are completing a new Application for the purchase or manufacture of a Class 3/Title II weapon.  At this point, there has been no clarification as to the term “responsible person.”  However, under “Definitions,” on Form 5320.23, it states:  “Examples of who may be considered a responsible person include settlors/grantors, trustees…”

You will need to submit the following to the ATF with your Application (Form 1, 4 or 5): (a) two fingerprint cards; (b) two 2” x 2” photographs, and (c) two Responsible Person Questionnaires (Form 5320.23).  In addition, the completed Application and Form 5320.23 must be sent to your Chief Law Enforcement Officer (“CLEO”) advising them that you are in the process of purchasing the Class 3/Title II weapon.  The CLEO does not need to sign this form.

Rule 41F even applies to anyone who has previously created a gun trust and has purchased Class 3/Title II weapons under the trust. Once you purchase a Class 3/Title II weapon under Rule 41F and submit fingerprints and photograph, and if you purchase another weapon within 24 months, you do not need to resubmit fingerprints and photo.  You will, however, need to complete ATF Form 5320.23 and provide it along with the new Application to your CLEO.  In addition, if a Co Grantor, Co-Trustee or a beneficiary who is 21 years of age or older lives outside of the jurisdiction where the trust items are held, that person will also need to send a copy of the Application and ATF Form 5320.23 to their CLEO.  Feel free to call our office should you have any questions regarding the new Rule.

ATF Rule 41F

We have had several phone calls from our gun trust clients regarding ATF Rule 41F which will go into effect on July 13, 2016. For those persons whose Form 1 or Form 4 applications are pending prior to July 13th, there should be no effect on your purchase and application.
Beginning on July 13, 2016, anyone who submits their application (with or without a gun trust) to the ATF must submit the application with fingerprints and a 2” x 2” photo (like a passport photo) of all “responsible parties.” The photo must have been taken within one year prior to the date of the application. Each responsible party must also complete ATF Form 5320.23. In addition, you must provide a copy of the application and ATF Form 5320.23 to your local chief law enforcement officer (CLEO). Speaking on the trusts we prepare in our office, “responsible parties” are the Grantors and Trustees. Beneficiaries are not considered “responsible parties” because they are not given the authority “to receive, possess, ship, transport, deliver, transfer, or otherwise dispose of a firearm for, or on behalf of, the trust.” (Rule 47F, § 479.11 Meaning of terms)
If you are using our Trust and if you submit a subsequent application within 24 months of ATF approval of Form 1 or Form 4, the responsible persons should not need to resubmit fingerprints and photographs unless the trust has been modified within that time period.
If you have any questions regarding this new Rule, feel free to call our office.

We are here to help with your National Firearms Act (NFA) questions

We invite you to peruse our website where you can find information on Firearm Trusts that we prepare, designed to address federal and Florida State law. In most cases, our firm charges a flat fee (including mailing costs) for a Firearms Trust (see our webpage:

If you plan to purchase certain types of items, including but not limited to machine guns, sound suppressors, short barreled shotguns, or short barreled rifles, is regulated by federal law. Placing such items in a trust is a convenient and popular method of holding these items, which is a type of ownership recognized in Florida.

We caution owners of class III items when relying on boilerplate forms or software designed to create trusts. You should ensure that your trust and any trust done for your client is properly drafted to deal with any special issues involved with items regulated by the NFA. Our law firm practices in the area of real estate, which encompasses estate planning, and has been drafting gun trusts since 2008. When the NFA is violated, the individuals who violate the Act may be subject to substantial fines, criminal charges, and forfeiture.

If you would like any information or to discuss our services, please do not hesitate to contact us at anytime.

What is the NFA?

NFA stands for the National Firearms Act.

The Act is a federal statute which imposes a statutory excise tax on the manufacture and transfer of certain firearms (such as gun suppressors, gun silencers, SBRs and machine guns) and mandates the registration of those firearms.

Useful NFA Links

What if I am making my own weapon and I have a gun trust?

After the trust is executed, you will need to provide ATF Form 1 and a copy of the trust to the ATF. ATF Form 1 is available on the ATF website. Download ATF Form 1 here.  Once you receive the tax stamp, you may purchase the parts necessary to make your own weapon.

PLEASE BE AWARE that you may not be in possession of all the parts necessary to manufacture the Class 3 weapon until you receive the tax stamp from the ATF.

What is the ATF?

ATF stands for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The ATF enforces Federal statutes and regulations dealing with firearms and explosives.

Useful ATF Links:
Click here for the ATF web site.
Click here for the ATF’s National Firearms Act Handbook

What happens if the National Firearms Act is violated?

Individuals who violate the NFA act may be subject to substantial fines, criminal charges, and forfeiture of their weapons. 

A prepared gun trust is a revocable living trust, which is a trust created during your lifetime, which you can revoke or amend whenever you wish. A living trust has a Trustee(s) (who may be you) who has the responsibility of managing the property transferred to the trust. Upon your death, the Trustee is typically directed to distribute the trust property to the beneficiaries or to continue to hold it and manage it for the benefit of the beneficiaries.

A Successor Trustee is the person named in the revocable trust agreement who will assume control of the trust if the original Trustee(s) dies, or becomes unable or unwilling to act. There can be one or several back-up Trustees to take over the Trust in the order you designate.
A Trustee is a fiduciary. As a fiduciary, the Trustee stands in a position of confidence and trust with respect to the beneficiaries. Trustees must act in the best interests of the beneficiaries, and can be sued by the beneficiaries if they act improperly.