The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is considering regulatory changes for citizens who wish to acquire short barrel rifles and shotguns, suppressors, and machine guns. The National Firearms Act provides the rules governing how these firearms may be acquired and transferred.

When the regulatory actions affecting NFA firearms owners and gun trust creators are announced this month, it is likely many revisions will take place in the near future. Mercurial gun laws are causing uncertainty among gun owners who are trying to manage firearms transfers without knowing how long regulations will be in effect before they are changed again.

Ready to establish a gun trust for the first time? Navigating the new legislation is best addressed with a lawyer who has experience crafting trust documents for firearms owners. When prepared properly, gun trusts offer the most legal protection available for gun owners and beneficiaries. (Learn about unintended felonies and the consequences of failing to properly own and transfer guns.) The ATF’s actions will not devalue a gun trust, but instead change how individuals establish one.

What changes may NFA firearms owners and individuals interested in acquiring NFA items in the future expect? Our gun trust attorneys have reviewed the proposed federal changes to gun trusts here, but gun owners may need to prepare themselves for added federal costs. According to AmmoLand, a gun news service, the proposed regulations may impose higher fees such that acquiring NFA firearms would be cost prohibitive.

These proposed expenses would affect NFA transfers for both individuals and entities, like those who “store” their firearms in a gun trust. The proposal also includes provisions for mandatory background checks on all persons related to a trust, corporation, or LLC related to a firearms transfer.