NFA Firearms and Gun trusts?
Any one here with NFA Firearms (short barrels, supressors, etc) experience? I know we have some!
So I'm about to start dabbling in NFA. I aim to start with something relatively simple...a short barreled AR. I know some of the basics...needing to fill out a Form 4 for a tax stamp, registering my existing lower receiver's serial, or buying a new lower to register, fingerprints,$200, engraving the SBR, etc. I also know that to have the NFA firearm transferred to me (as an individual), I wil need passport-type photos and a signature from my Chief LEO (either the police chief in the city i reside in, or the county sheriff).
I'm fortunate to live in a state that makes NO statutory restrictions on NFA ownership, including machine guns. Getting a signature from a CLEO, however, is a different matter. Some CLEO's aren't well-versed in NFA, and out of ignorance, want nothing to do with putting their signature on a BATFE form authorizing NFA firearms transfer to individuals, even after a fingerprint check. (My residential city's police chief) Some believe that individuals shouldn't own that type of stuff, and if I really need it, my PD would provide it for me, and that's the only acceptable way for me to obtain it. (My democrat county sheriff) It's not a "shall issue" thing like with CCWs, wherein as long as you fulfill statutory requirement, they're obligated to sign your form. It's completely up to the CLEO whether or not they'll sign for you, and that gives them the freedom to interject their own ignorance or political view into the equation. Unfortunately, I don't live in the city that I work in, because our chief has had no problems signing the forms for a couple of guys here who reside in city limits. :(
SO, I am looking to set up a trust. I'm not super familiar with it, but the jist I get is that the trust is regarded more like a corporation in the BATFE's eyes, and I (and whoever else I list) am a trustee. The trust (which will be whatever I name it....121traffic's badass gun trust or whatever) will be the technical owner of the firearms I put within the trust's control, and as a trustee I can exercise control over said firearm. It seems that with this method, I would bypass the need for fingerprints, CLEO signature, passport photos, etc, every time I get a new NFA firearm. I would still need to pay $200 for each tax stamp, however, but the process would be very streamlined because the firearms are technically being transferred to the trust, NOT me as an individual.
I've read a couple different articles online...some say to set up an NFA Firearms Trust, while some say to set up a Revocable Living Trust. Some say they are two different things, some say they are one and the same. Basically, the trust is set up with trustees (i.e. me) and beneficiaries (i.e. who gets my heaters when I die). A guy here at my PD has one set up and got me onto the idea. He says he gets his stamps a lot quicker from BATFE.
Obviously, I'm going to consult a lawyer about it. I just wanted to hear from anyone here that's knowledgeable about it. Any thoughts? Can I list anyone as a trustee? Can me and a good buddy go in together on one, etc? Just spitballing here. Looking for any and all info.