On July 1, 2013, Colorado enacted two laws affecting all gun owners and any person in the presence of a firearm. The first law prohibits the sale, transfer or possession of ammunition magazines with a capacity of more than 15 rounds. The second law requires a background check anytime there is a transfer of possession of a firearm.
Starting on July 1, 2013, the sale, possession or transfer of a “High Capacity” magazine in Colorado is a crime. The correct term is not high capacity magazine but large capacity magazine. A person who owns a large capacity magazine prior to July 1, 2013 and maintains continuous possession after that date has a defense to being charged with violation of the law. In layperson terms, existing large capacity magazines are not subject to forfeiture, today. However, upon death, the large capacity magazine is probably forfeited.
Starting on July 1, 2013, all transfers of possession of a Colorado firearm require a timely background check. This goes far beyond a sale and transfer of ownership. Any transfer of possession requires an analysis of whether a background check is needed. Want to loan your hunting rifle to your neighbor for a 4 day hunting trip? Background check required. Want to gift or loan your firearm to a boyfriend/girlfriend? Background check required. Want to gift or loan your firearm to a family member? Better be sure they are within the defined exception.
Gun trusts are not new, but are a time-proven tool when properly drafted and tailored to firearm issues. Gun trusts are very popular with people who purchase firearms restricted by the National Firearms Act (the “NFA”). Certain firearms (for example, silencers, short barrel rifles, short barrel shotguns and automatic firearms) require application to the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (the “BATF” or “ATF”) and payment of a $200.00 stamp tax before a person can take possession of the restricted, NFA firearm. We have drafted hundreds of these trusts over the last ten+ years.
A trust concept is one way to preserve family firearms for multiple generations while allowing the firearms to be in the possession of multiple individuals without violating Colorado’s new transfer of possession law or the NFA. Call us at 303-273-2923 or use the contact us form to request more information.