Understandably, the peak time of year for gifting guns is in December after Black Friday deals. What goes up along with booming gun sales figures? Sales of ammunition, background checks, and for responsible gun owners—their estate plans. NICS background checks in November and December nearly double in volume from other months throughout the year. Our gun trust lawyers note a few concerns below that donors and recipients of firearms should review before gifting or accepting a firearm:

  1. Background checks and permits. If you are buying a gun to give to someone else, you will need state identification with your current address and complete a background check investigation. You also must make sure that the recipient is legally able to possess a firearm under state and federal law. Depending on the type of firearm and your state’s laws, a permit may be required as well. For example, Southern Gun Law Group’s attorneys serve North Carolina and under state law all handgun transfers, including gifts, require that the recipient have a permit. Perhaps you are buying a gift for a friend or relative who is visiting from out-of-state during the holidays. How will the recipient legally transport the firearm to their home state? A federal permit is not required, however documentation is required for transporting NFA items (such as short-barreled rifles and shotguns, and automatic weapons) across state lines. Our gun trust attorneys provide a full review of the documentation required and the appropriate measures for storing items when transporting firearms across state lines.
  2. Sharing and transferring firearms. In lieu of gifting a gun, the firearm can be shared via a gun trust. A gun trust can be created to ‘own’ the firearms and designated persons may be named as authorized users. Without a gun trust, the transfer or sharing of NFA firearms could be considered a federal felony. Gun trusts can also provide instructions for the proper storage, use, and disposition of the firearms.