Question 1: What is a gun trust?
A form of revocable living trust, a gun trust allows Florida gun owners to transfer ownership of specific types of firearms. The trust, under the direction of the trustee, owns the guns on behalf of the beneficiaries, who get to use the weapons. Gun trusts are specifically designed to allow people who own firearms restricted under the National Firearms Act. This law limits who can own, use, or transfer such weapons as machine guns, sawed-off shotguns, and explosive devices such as grenades.
Question 2: What are the benefits of a gun trust?
Like other revocable living trusts, a gun trust can allow you to transfer your firearms collection outside of the probate process. This makes your transfer much more private. Further, you can avoid having to get approval from the local chief of police before transferring through the trust. Without a gun trust, you must first get approval from the local law enforcement official before you can submit your transfer documentation to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Question 3: How do I create a gun trust?
Like all revocable living trusts, you can create a gun trust by drafting the appropriate legal document. You do not need to register this document with a government agency, but you do have to ensure the document complies with all federal and state laws. A gun trust must also contain specific provisions that make it slightly different than other revocable living trusts, so you should speak to your estate planning lawyer for detailed instruction.