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What happens when a C&R holder dies?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by big_bang, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. big_bang

    big_bang Well-Known Member

    My father-in-law is an active C&R collector. He has a great collection and it is quite large by most peoples' standards. I have really enjoyed talking guns, going to shows, and physically going through the collection from time to time with him. We have a strong common ground in this area.

    He keeps an accurate bound book (he actually goes beyond that for his own purposes and keeps a separate binder with pictures, story, and any available research info about the firearm) - to my knowledge only he only acquires them (never gets rid of anything).

    I do not know what his intentions are as far as a trust or will, and I feel it would be callous to probe in that direction. That being said, here goes:

    How would his status as a C&R holder would affect the collection should he die? What happens to the bound book at that point? Does the collection simply become just a bunch of privately held guns by my mother-in-law or whomever else he wills them to (as though the C&R license never existed)?

    Second part...here's where it may get sticky.
    I now live in CA. He does not. If I applied and obtained my C&R could I receive his collection en masse in such a situation, or would I be hosed in some way by the CA "safe" handgun list, importation, or one-in-30-days laws?

    Oh yeah...please do not post if all you have to offer are disparaging remarks about California residency and its associated pitfalls ;) I'm looking for some real help here.
  2. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Well-Known Member

    Whether he expires or his license does, the guns stay with his beneficiaries. Federal law does not require a C&R holder to send in the bound book upon his death or upon the expiration of his C&R license. (dealers & manufacturers do have to turn in their bound books if they go out of business)

    Federally, if YOU are a beneficiary of his will the firearms become yours at the moment the will is probated (see your state laws on inheritance).

    Someone (maybe even your FIL) will be along shortly to explain C&R inheritance in California.
  3. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Well-Known Member

    FWIW, I don't think it's callous at all. We all should know as much as we can about the wishes of our loved ones, so should the time come, we're able to do right by them.

    I think that your dad would appreciate you for showing concern for the proper distribution of his (apparently) important, well-researched, and well-cared-for collection.
  4. Trebor

    Trebor Well-Known Member

    The C&R FFL will have no impact on the status of his collection after his death. The firearms will be part of his estate and will be dealt with as part of normal inheritence and/or probate. (This assumes there are no NFA items involved.)

    I can't speak to California law. Contact someone knowledgable in Cali.
  5. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    Well really, what are they going to do to him? Throw him in prison?:D
  6. dogtown tom

    dogtown tom Well-Known Member

    They will fine him first.:D
  7. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Well-Known Member

    My first thought is that he'd be dipped in cosmoline and rolled up in paper :p
  8. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    Maybe his bound book goes into the nearest fireplace, and his guns are all lost in a tragic boating accident. Hard to say.

    Same goes for any precious metals, precious stones, antique furniture, rare books and anything else of value that he owned that wasn't on record anywhere outside his personal files.
  9. Slamfire

    Slamfire Well-Known Member

    All his fellow collector buddies come over and try to buy some of the collection on the cheap.

    The widow tosses them out and sells the whole collection to a local dealer for next to nothing.
  10. CooperThunder

    CooperThunder Well-Known Member

    It is not a callous question. When I die, my guns will go to our youngest son because he is the most interested in them and I know he will take care of them well even long after I had passed on. I already have that in my Will and he has no assumption of what he will receive from me should I passed on earlier than him. And if he asked, I will tell him honestly.

    I am supposing that if I have a C&R (I applied for one recently), it will die with me and I would hope that he will apply for a C&R himself when he turns of age because he collects antique rifles himself. It only takes 6 months to acquire one...compare to the rest of his life without one.
  11. Sebastian the Ibis

    Sebastian the Ibis Well-Known Member

    The best estate plan is to have nothing but your last dollar in your pocket on the day you die. Or in other words, your father-in-law has given everything away before he died. ;);););););)

    If you do not expect any family issues, and nobody will contest the fact that he gave the firearms to you, your wife, your children or anyone else. Then there would be no dispute, and I doubt anyone would want to look at the bound book to determine ownership.

    However, if you expect other members of your family to contest that the firearms were passed inter-vivos (between the living). Then you would have to document the gift or sale, since the first thing an attorney would look at is the bound book, since he is required by federal law to document ownership. I would try to work with your father-in-law and/or family to avoid this dispute prior to it arising.

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