Michigan –-(AmmoLand.com)- On Friday, January 13th (a fitting day perhaps), the BATF published on its website the release of the final rule on “Factoring Criteria for Firearms with Attached ‘Stabilizing Braces’” which can be found at ATF.gov.
The gist of the rule is that essentially every pistol brace, when attached to a firearm, creates a short-barreled rifle (SBR) which must be registered under the National Firearms Act (NFA).
The rule doesn’t take effect until it is officially published in the Federal Register. But I have seen one article mention that it may be published today. However, today is a federal holiday which typically would mean that it would not be published until the following day.
There will be a 120-day grace period for registering the pistol brace SBR, and the $200 tax stamp will be waived.
However, the firearm may only be registered in an individual’s name to get the $200 waiver. If someone wants to register the pistol to a trust, it must have been owned by the trust prior to the official publication of the rule and proof of the transfer will need to be submitted. See Question 12 of the Frequently Asked Questions.
There may be a small window, perhaps closing as early as this morning, January 16, 2023, to assign your pistol brace-equipped firearms to your NFA trust in order to get the items registered to the trust without paying a fee. I would suggest that you sign a notarized “assignment to trust” of the item(s) that you are transferring to you trust. If you cannot get to a notary in time, most of them will be off today, perhaps a signed and dated assignment with a witness or two may suffice. If the transfer is not done in time, you can still register the item as an individual and then later transfer it to a trust at which point it will cost $200.
If you do not already have an NFA trust, you may wish to get one ASAP. The main advantages of an NFA trust are expanding the number of people who can be authorized to use and possess the items and a more streamlined transfer of ownership upon the original owner’s death. For more details, see this recent article.
Charles E. Cottrell
Attorney at Law
2025 E. Beltline SE, Suite 402
Grand Rapids, MI 49546
About Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Owners:
The Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Owners is a non-profit, non-partisan organization. Formed from just eight people in 1996, we now have thousands of members and numerous affiliated clubs across the state. We’re growing larger and more effective every day.
Our mission statement is: “Promoting safe use and ownership of firearms through education, litigation, and legislation” Visit: www.mcrgo.org