Recently a past client informed me that his NFA gun trust document, which I drafted, was kicked back to him by an ATF examiner. The issue resulted from a novel interpretation of who the document identified as "responsible persons" under the trust. My first response was to find out whether any rules had changed that I did not know about. Although I confirmed there have been no rule changes since 2016, I did learn that ATF counsel was taking a new, stricter approach to the definition of responsible person for a trust. Although my client's situation was perhaps just an anomaly due to an overzealous examiner, I used this opportunity to carefully review and edit the software templates I use when drafting NFA gun trusts. The updated document tightens the wording in a few key provisions in order to eliminate the offending language. While I disagree with the ATF's interpretation, I also want to minimize the possibility of ATF examiners kicking back a Form 4 to a past client of mine. My update also includes a minor change in wording to the trustee declaration form and to the provisions allowing for appointment of a trust protector.
If you are a past client who wants to update your trust document to include my recent changes, please contact me.
Thomas J. Bouman