Put Your Guns in Your Will: Don’t Leave Your Love Ones With a Legal Nightmare

Nothing pulls a family together like the death of a loved one. Old grudges are forgotten and fights are put aside as folks gather to say goodbye for the last time. But after the mourning is over, the family issues that were once often ignored can reappear with a vengeance. That’s why it’s so important that you always have your will updated to make sure that everything will be taken care of after you pass. However, there is one thing that even the most diligent person can forget when putting together their will: What happens to their firearms collection after they pass?

What Happens to the Guns Immediately Following Death?

After a family member passes, in a best-case scenario, their will is completely in order and any gun licenses will pass to their executor. This is a temporary permit only, lasting only until the guns pass to the intended recipient. Once the guns are in the possession of the recipient, the temporary licence expires and the new owner will need to get their own.

…then there is the worst case scenario. In this scenario, all of the gun licenses expire before the family member passes. No gun license means that a temporary one can’t be transferred to the executor. The executor will then be possession of illegal firearms—not exactly the best situation to be in!

What Are the Best Options?

Well, making sure that your will is completely taken care of and that your gun licenses are all still valid are extremely important. Even if everything is in order, the transfer process can still be a bit of a hassle, but your executor shouldn’t have a problem following through on your wishes.

If the guns are given as an inheritance, the recipient will have to pay the estate administrative tax on their value. A very attractive alternative to this could be to give the guns to the intended recipient BEFORE death. Then, all that they’d need to do is get a gun permit/license so they can legally take possession of the guns, with no taxes needing to be paid on them.

However, the easiest option—by far—is to simply auction off your guns before any of this even becomes an issue. If you have firearms that you’re no longer using, or guns with no sentimental value, then selling them can eliminate the problems of inheritance and gun licenses entirely, while also putting some extra money in your pocket. If you wish to put this money in your will, that is your choice. If you want to use it to go on a vacation instead, hey, who are we to argue?

If the worst-case scenario has happened and the guns have been willed to someone without a valid license, we can pick up the firearms, help your executor sort through the paperwork, figure out the gun licenses, or maybe even auction them off at one of our gun auctions.  

But really, auctioning your guns off early is the best way to eliminate inheritance nightmares before they even happen. There will be no worries about licenses or which family member gets each gun. By auctioning all of your guns, your family will “dodge a legal bullet” after you pass.

If you’d like to learn more about GTA Guns Auctions, or any of our other services, you can simply visit our website or contact us about any questions you may have. And be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter!