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Thread: Question re. gun gift

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    Regular Member buster81's Avatar
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    Hey folks. I think I know the answer to these questions, but I was asked by a worry wart to verify. My Dad is moving and doesn't want to take his huge,heavy gun safe with him. Since his new digs will involve a much smaller home for his irons, he wants to get rid of some of them. They will be finding a nice home at my house. One of his guns is a nice little revolver that he wants to give to my wife.

    Here is where she has some questions. Like I said, I think I know the answers, but is there any reason why he can't give a gun as a gift? I really doubt any paperwork had to be filled out on this revolver when he purchased it decades ago.

    One of the other guns making it's way into my collection is a fairly new purchase (within the last year). It's a bit different since he filled out the paperwork and just doesn't want it anymore. He'sgetting old (arthritis), and I think this piece turned out to bea bit much for him to shoot. Since it's purchased in his name, does we have to document the transaction with a receipt like you would if you sold a gun privately?

    Thanks.

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    There shouldn't be any issue at all. Do you reside in the same state (if that is even an issue)

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    As long as you are in the same state it's no big deal. If you really want to cya, you could have him include a letter with the gun stating that he is gifting it to your wife or do up a bill of sale for $0.00. If you are out of state, to fully comply the with the Gun Control Act of '68(?) you would need to do the transfer via an FFL in your state.

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    Double tap

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    buster81 wrote:
    Since it's purchased in his name, does we have to document the transaction with a receipt like you would if you sold a gun privately?

    Thanks.
    If he's a VA resident (and you are too):
    Virginia does not have gun registration. No documentation is needed for any private transactions, "private" being that no person holds an FFL.

    If he's NOT a VA resident (but you are):
    You have to have him transfer them to you though a FFL holder in VA (any gun shop in VA). You'll have to do the NICS background check and form 4473 as if you're buying a gun from the store.

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    Regular Member buster81's Avatar
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    Sorry I forgot to add that. We are both in VA.

    I've been explaining the BS around the "gun show loophole" and the concerns about straw purchases, so I think my lady is afraid that this resembles one of those. I told her not to worry about it. I'm pretty sure this situation is different that a gansta getting his girl to buy him a gat so he can TCB.

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    When I gave a shot gun as a gift to someone, my gun dealer had me fill out a firearms transfer form as a form of CYA. It was so if in the future something EVER happened with the firearm, we had the paperwork saying that yes I purchased the gun, but then I gave the gun to him as a gift. Not so much that my friend may go postal and use it, but also in case it got stolen and used in the commision of a crime. I'd have the paperwork just in case. Id personally rather have too much paperwork than not enough.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    There is no straw purchase involved here by any stretch. Such straw purchases involve three parties: 1) seller, 2) intermediate buyer who buys with the intent to transfer to #3 who is not legally able to purchase.

    There is no "loophole" only private transactions and they are legal.

    If you are still hesitant, talk to a friendly FFL and explain the circumstances as you have here. I'm absolute confident that you will get an identical response.

    Yata hey


    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Yes, AFAIK 'straw purchases' are only illegal if you are transferring interstate or if the person who is receiving the gun cannot legally possess it. I've given a gun as a gift before; it was to someone in the same state who could legally buy it themselves.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    GWRedDragon wrote:
    Yes, AFAIK 'straw purchases' are only illegal if you are transferring interstate or if the person who is receiving the gun cannot legally possess it. I've given a gun as a gift before; it was to someone in the same state who could legally buy it themselves.
    Cite to straw purchase and transferring interstate please. I believe you are mistaken on this criteria.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Grapeshot wrote:
    GWRedDragon wrote:
    Yes, AFAIK 'straw purchases' are only illegal if you are transferring interstate or if the person who is receiving the gun cannot legally possess it. I've given a gun as a gift before; it was to someone in the same state who could legally buy it themselves.
    Cite to straw purchase and transferring interstate please. I believe you are mistaken on this criteria.

    Yata hey
    18 USC 922 (a)(3):

    It shall be unlawful...for any person, other than a licensed importer, licensed manufacturer, licensed dealer, or licensed collector to transport into or receive in the State where he resides (or if the person is a corporation or other business entity, the State where it maintains a place of business) any firearm purchased or otherwise obtained by such person outside that State, except that this paragraph (A) shall not preclude any person who lawfully acquires a firearm by bequest or intestate succession in a State other than his State of residence from transporting the firearm into or receiving it in that State, if it is lawful for such person to purchase or possess such firearm in that State, (B) shall not apply to the transportation or receipt of a firearm obtained in conformity with subsection (b)(3) of this section, and (C) shall not apply to the transportation of any firearm acquired in any State prior to the effective date of this chapter;
    And further down where it lists who cannot have a gun, the wording at the beginning of the list is

    (d) It shall be unlawful for any person to sell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to any person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe that such person:
    So if you make a 'straw purchase' for someone who cannot legally have the gun you are 'disposing' of the firearm to someone who cannot have it.


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    nova wrote:
    buster81 wrote:
    Since it's purchased in his name, does we have to document the transaction with a receipt like you would if you sold a gun privately?

    Thanks.
    If he's a VA resident (and you are too):
    Virginia does not have gun registration. No documentation is needed for any private transactions, "private" being that no person holds an FFL.

    If he's NOT a VA resident (but you are):
    You have to have him transfer them to you though a FFL holder in VA (any gun shop in VA). You'll have to do the NICS background check and form 4473 as if you're buying a gun from the store.
    What about if the person I bought the firearms from and myself live in the same state and we did a bill of sale, but then I move to a different state?

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    GWRedDragon wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    GWRedDragon wrote:
    Yes, AFAIK 'straw purchases' are only illegal if you are transferring interstate or if the person who is receiving the gun cannot legally possess it. I've given a gun as a gift before; it was to someone in the same state who could legally buy it themselves.
    Cite to straw purchase and transferring interstate please. I believe you are mistaken on this criteria.

    Yata hey
    18 USC 922 (a)(3):

    Snipped for brevity by Grapeshot
    18 USC 922(a)(3) states who can transport, receive and purchase firearms involved in interstate transactions. It does not refer to the question nor have application in this instance.

    I agree that selling or giving a firearm to someone that is not legally eligible to receive it is a violation but that in and of itself is not a "straw purchase."

    A "straw purchase" requires a 3rd party or middle man between the seller and the otherwise ineligible recipient.

    "Under United States federal gun laws, a straw purchase is any purchase from a dealer holding a Federal Firearms License where the buyer conducting the transaction is not the "actual purchaser", but is acting as a proxy for another person. Although the term is commonly used to refer to purchasing on behalf of a person who is legally ineligible to purchase or possess a firearm, the law does not make that distinction."

    Actual personal history - I gave a handgun to a friend of mine in Pa.when visiting him from Va. We went through a FFL at his end to make the transfer legal. Had I given it directly to him it would have been in violation but not a straw purchase.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Spectre wrote:
    What about if the person I bought the firearms from and myself live in the same state and we did a bill of sale, but then I move to a different state?
    IANAL

    Y'all are fine so long as you and seller where (1) both legal residents of the same state and (2) followed all relevant state laws at the time of the sale. The bill of sale is an optional CYA should the gun later be associated with a crime. It provides a record of when you came in possession of the firearm.
    ---

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    Here you go. See page 3, item number 1 as it explains straw purchase as well as purchase for a gift.

    http://www.atf.gov/forms/4473/index.htm

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    Regular Member buster81's Avatar
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    Thanks folks. I think I have this straight. I'm excited to have some very nice pieces added to my collection. :celebrate

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    ClumsyCandy wrote:
    When I gave a shot gun as a gift to someone, my gun dealer had me fill out a firearms transfer form as a form of CYA. It was so if in the future something EVER happened with the firearm, we had the paperwork saying that yes I purchased the gun, but then I gave the gun to him as a gift. Not so much that my friend may go postal and use it, but also in case it got stolen and used in the commission of a crime. I'd have the paperwork just in case. Id personally rather have too much paperwork than not enough.
    A regular homemade Bill of Sale will also accomplish this.

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    Now that you have a billion opinions, I suppose one more won't hurt. You probably know by now that there is no issue in you father gifting these firearms to you and your wife (on anyone else in the same state that can lawfully own firearms).

    There is one other issue. Taxes.

    Your wife MAY have to claim the value of the firearms she receives on her income taxes. In your case your parents can gift $10,000 per year to you, so the first 10K is free to you, but any value beyond that is taxable. The Government WILL come after the money if they find out you owe them.

    You should use "fair market value" as the basis for tax purposes. Shotgun News is a good source for that info.
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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Hawkflyer wrote:
    Now that you have a billion opinions, I suppose one more won't hurt. You probably know by now that there is no issue in you father gifting these firearms to you and your wife (on anyone else in the same state that can lawfully own firearms).

    There is one other issue. Taxes.

    Your wife MAY have to claim the value of the firearms she receives on her income taxes. In your case your parents can gift $10,000 per year to you, so the first 10K is free to you, but any value beyond that is taxable. The Government WILL come after the money if they find out you owe them.

    You should use "fair market value" as the basis for tax purposes. Shotgun News is a good source for that info.
    The exemption is now $12,000 - see page 6 of link - gift splitting could increase that limit to 24,000. http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p950.pdf

    Of course you could just provide safekeeping for your dad's guns (as his new house is too small) and have them willed to you later. Presently, the estate tax is due to expire in 2010.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Regular Member buster81's Avatar
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    Grapeshot wrote:
    The exemption is now $12,000 - see page 6 of link - gift splitting could increase that limit to 24,000. http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p950.pdf

    Of course you could just provide safekeeping for your dad's guns (as his new house is too small) and have them willed to you later. Presently, the estate tax is due to expire in 2010.

    Yata hey
    There is always a catch. So lets say that I just store the guns for the time being. Is there any reason that I can't carry HIS guns withMY CHP?

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    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    buster81 wrote:
    There is always a catch. So lets say that I just store the guns for the time being. Is there any reason that I can't carry HIS guns withMY CHP?
    No reason at all. The CHP is a permit to carry A weapon, not only yours.

    When my daughter visits, to save her the hassle of checking bags, I simply allow her to carry one of mine while she's here.

    Proper caretaking means occasional shooting and cleaning, doesn't it?
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    Regular Member buster81's Avatar
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    Tess wrote:

    Proper caretaking means occasional shooting and cleaning, doesn't it?
    Indeed it does. Don't worry Dad, I'll take real good care of your irons.

  23. #23
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    buster81 wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    The exemption is now $12,000 - see page 6 of link - gift splitting could increase that limit to 24,000. http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p950.pdf

    Of course you could just provide safekeeping for your dad's guns (as his new house is too small) and have them willed to you later. Presently, the estate tax is due to expire in 2010.

    Yata hey
    There is always a catch. So lets say that I just store the guns for the time being. Is there any reason that I can't carry HIS guns withMY CHP?
    IMO - As you would be storing them for your dad's convenience, I am sure he would not object to your using/borrowing and cleaning them on occasion.

    As handguns are neither registered nor attached in any way to CHPs in Va., I see no problem. I carried another's pistol for the simple pleasure of doing so without hesitation.

    Yata hey


    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    Grapeshot wrote:
    I carried another's pistol for the simple pleasure of doing so without hesitation.

    Yata hey
    Yeah, that's why I sometimes WON'T let Grapeshot handle a pistol of mine!!!!!!!!!
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

  25. #25
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Tess wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    I carried another's pistol for the simple pleasure of doing so without hesitation.

    Yata hey
    Yeah, that's why I sometimes WON'T let Grapeshot handle a pistol of mine!!!!!!!!!
    Possession is 9/10 of the law isn't it.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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