Does your Elderly Parent Own a Gun? Why You Should Check with Them About the Arrangements They’ve Made in Their Will

Do either of your elderly parents own a gun, or have a gun collection? Do you know their intentions for their firearms after they’ve passed? Do they wish it to go to you or another member of the family?

The death of a parent is something that nobody likes to think about. It seems almost inconceivable that they, like all of us, will someday pass. We try to avoid putting any thought into it because it’s so unpleasant. That’s the reason why so many families find themselves in difficult situations after their parents’ death.

Comprehensive will planning can be a huge help in assisting the grieving process by eliminating any chances of infighting, disagreements, resentments, and other kinds of stress. If a parent owns firearms, things get even more complicated.

We strongly advise that you find out what arrangements your elderly parents’ have made in their will for property, possessions, money, and especially guns. Without proper preparation, dealing with the firearms of a deceased parent can become extremely complicated and stressful. But when everything is settled ahead of time, the stress of having to worry about their guns will be removed completely.

What Happens Immediately Following Their Death?

If everything is properly arranged, the gun license of your elderly parent will transfer to the executor of their will. This gives the executor the legal right to follow the wishes of the deceased to the letter.

Mind you, this will be a temporary license, only in place so long as the will is being dealt with. After everything is settled, this temporary gun licence will not be transferred to the recipients of the guns’ they’ll need to get their own license.

If you’re the executor of their will, and they also plan to give you the guns, you’ll have to make arrangements to get your own permanent gun license as soon as possible, as the temporary license will soon expire.

If you don’t have use for the guns for your own use, GTA Guns can take care of all of the arrangements and auction the guns for you.  

What if the Executor isn’t Allowed to Possess Firearms?

If the executor of the will is not allowed to possess firearms, then the temporary license will not be transferred to them. Other arrangements will need to be made by the executor to find someone who can act in their stead with regard to the guns.

This is an excellent reason to talk to your parents about their will and choice of executor. Many people don’t think to check if their chosen executor can legally possess guns, so confirming that they can ahead of time can save a tremendous amount of frustration in the future.

Will You Need to Pay Taxes?

Yes, if the firearms are willed to you, then you’ll have to pay the estate administration tax on each gun received. However, there’s a loophole around this, and again, it’s an excellent reason to talk to your parents about their will preparations ahead of time:

If your elderly parent transfers ownership of their guns to you while they’re still alive, no taxes will need to be paid. All you need to do is get a gun permit/license so you can legally take possession of the guns. This is a fantastic way for elderly parents to make sure that their collection will remain in the family, without having to worry about taxes cutting into the inheritance they wish to give.

Where are the Guns Stored?

Let’s face it, not everyone stores their guns safely and securely. Many elderly folks, if they aren’t professional collectors or don’t use their guns very often, may just keep their gun under the bed! Or worse, hide them somewhere in the house.

Playing hide and seek with a gun collection is not how you want to spend the days after your parent’s funeral. It might be worth talking to them about safe gun storage right now, to make sure that everything is in the same place and 100% secure when the time comes. By using GTA Guns Safe Storage, you’ll know exactly where all of the guns are and you can rest assured that they’ll be taken care of by the gun professionals here at GTA Guns.

What if it’s Already too Late?

If you didn’t have the opportunity to take any of these steps prior to your parent’s death, there’s still a way to minimize any hassle and make sure that the guns pass to their intended recipient as soon as possible. Your parent’s executor can take the firearms to GTA Guns and we will handle all of the paperwork for you. We can even pick up the guns for you.

We’ll walk you through the official transfer process, or we can arrange a gun auction to sell the firearms to eager collectors, providing the executor with the proceeds to then be given to the family.

Talking to a parent about all of this is never easy. Primarily because they’re usually just as reluctant to talk about their death as you are. But by making sure that everything is prearranged, they can ensure that, in the days and weeks following their death, everything will go as smoothly as possible for their loved ones, without the hassle or headaches of inheritance issues or resentments.

Sometimes there are difficult conversations to have, but this is one of those times when you should really check in with them. Save yourself a lot of extra grief; don’t wait until they’re gone to determine their arrangements. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.