If there is one thing any (reputable) attorney will tell you, the law is so complex these days that it is a “combination” of things that make things work the way you want…not one single instrument, document, or tool. Gun Trusts are no different…
Gun Trusts became really popular when they were being mass distributed by gun shops, gun ranges, and other “non-legal” entities. Why? Because they were a “form” or a “document” you could simply fill out and file and you were on your way. As with anything that has a “quick fix” solution, usually they aren’t the solution you think and end up creating more issues down the road than if more time was spent up front. Gun Trusts aren’t any different.
Think of it like the “diet” industry. Everyone promises a “quick fix” whether it be their packaged food, a magic pill, starvation, eliminating foods, etc. And according to national statistics, over 95% of diets fail. Many because the initial premise was wrong and would never work but others because they were a standalone, quick fix solution to a much larger problem…eating habits. Unless there was a comprehensive plan to change this and modify the everyday eating habits, these plans will fail.
Think of this in terms of a Gun Trust. Someone can put together a document for you and it might work the way it was intended…even those drawn up by reputable attorneys. But is that the complete answer? I would say NO! As with anything to do with the complexity of our laws today, it is a combination of strategy, tools, and experience that get you what you need as an individual…while staying within the law. Gun Trusts and gun ownership isn’t any different.
For example, if you have a standalone Gun Trust, it serves a very specific purpose. It can be built very well and is designed to cover many aspects of gun ownership. But if it is written in a way that links into your complete Estate Plan and the two work together, both plans are now much more robust, complete, and generally offer many more options and better protection. No two people are the same…so creating a standard document may not cover all the specific needs you have for your family and loved ones. This is where a Gun Trust with a “Buddy”…in this case your Estate Plan, really allows you to get what you want out of both because they are working together.
I create Gun Trusts for people every day. They work and they are written to serve their purpose. But the ones that really offer the best protection and most peace of mind are the ones integrated with estate plans (and other plans) that are customized exactly to the persons individual needs. Having a Gun Trust is great…and highly recommended if you own firearms. But I would strongly encourage you to talk to your attorney and make sure it is working with your other plans so you have the most protection available to you and your family. And if they aren’t sure of how the two integrate together, give me a call and I can help guide you through the types of questions you might want to be asking.
So get your Gun Trust a “Buddy” and you will probably find much greater peace of mind and better protection for you and your family’s future. Because owning a firearm should be a privilege and offer lots of enjoyment…not be a worrisome aspect of your life.