Exploring the Pros and Cons of Gun Trusts in North Carolina

Gun trusts have become an increasingly popular tool for gun owners in North Carolina. These legal entities are designed to hold firearms and related assets, and they can provide a variety of benefits. However, they also have some potential drawbacks that gun owners should be aware of. In this article, we will explore the advantages and disadvantages of gun trusts in North Carolina.

Advantages of Gun Trusts in North Carolina

  1. Multiple trustees: A gun trust can have multiple trustees, which means that more than one person can legally possess and use the firearms held by the trust. This can be helpful for families who want to ensure that their firearms are passed down to future generations or for friends who want to jointly own firearms.
  2. Easy transfer of firearms: When a gun owner dies, their firearms can be difficult to transfer to the next generation. A gun trust can simplify this process, allowing the firearms to be passed on to the beneficiaries of the trust without having to go through the probate process.
  3. Privacy: Gun trusts are not public record, so they can provide some privacy for gun owners who may not want their firearm ownership to be publicly known. This can be especially important for high-profile individuals or those who want to keep their gun ownership private for personal reasons.
  4. NFA compliance: If you own certain firearms that fall under the National Firearms Act (NFA), such as suppressors or machine guns, a gun trust can help you comply with the regulations related to those firearms. A gun trust can allow multiple people to legally possess these firearms and can also make it easier to transfer them to future generations.

Disadvantages of Gun Trusts in North Carolina

  1. Cost: Setting up a gun trust can be expensive, and ongoing maintenance can also incur additional costs. This can be a significant barrier for some gun owners who may not want to invest the time and money required to set up and maintain a gun trust.
  2. Complexity: Gun trusts can be complex legal entities, and they may require ongoing legal advice and guidance. This can be especially true for gun owners who are not familiar with estate planning or trust law.
  3. Lack of control: When firearms are held in a gun trust, the trustee(s) have control over them, rather than the individual gun owner. This can be a disadvantage if you want complete control over your firearms or if you do not trust the trustee(s) to make decisions about your firearms.
  4. Liability: If a trustee misuses a firearm or violates any gun laws, the gun trust , and its beneficiaries could be held liable. This means that gun owners need to carefully consider who they appoint as trustees and ensure that they are trustworthy and responsible individuals.


In conclusion, gun trusts can be a useful tool for gun owners in North Carolina, but they also have some potential drawbacks that should be carefully considered. Before setting up a gun trustgun owners should consider the costs, complexity, and potential loss of control over their firearms. They should also carefully select trustees who are trustworthy and responsible individuals. By weighing the advantages and disadvantages of gun trustsgun owners can make an informed decision about whether a gun trust is right for them.

Greg McIntyre
Estate Planning & Elder Law Attorney

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