DISPOSAL OF FIREARMS IN INSOLVENT OR DECEASED ESTATE
Date: 19 (13)
There are continuous questions about the management of estate firearmsThe best way to understand the procedure is to understand Regulation 103
REGULATION 103 of Regulations (2004) of the Firearms Control Act (Act 60 of 2000).
(1) Prior to the issuing of a Letter of Executorship by the Master, the nominated executor in the will and in the absence of such nominated executor, the heir, next of kin or close relative of a deceased who was the holder of a licence, permit or authorisation in terms of the Act, may under authority of a permit issued in terms of section 21 of the Act, possess the firearms of the deceased until subregulation (2) takes effect.
(2) Subject to the provisions of any other law, any person who under any execution warrant issued by a court of law, or an appointment, letter of executorship, letter of administration or letter of curatorship from the High Court or the Master of the High Court, as the case may be, acts as messenger of the court, bailiff, executor, administrator, trustee, curator or liquidator of the estate of a person who possess a firearm or ammunition, must take steps to ensure the safe custody of the firearm and ammunition and store the firearms and ammunition in a storage facility as prescribed in regulation 86: Provided that if an heir of a deceased estate is a holder of a licence, authorisation or permit issued under the Act, that heir may provide for the safe custody of the firearm and ammunition on condition that -
(a) the executor does not have the required storage facilities;
(b) the executor issues a letter of consent to the heir for the safe custody of the firearm, stating the licence particulars of the deceased and make, type, calibre of the firearm, as well as, every manufacturer’s serial number or additional identification mark that is reflected on the firearm; and
(c) a copy of the letter of consent must be filed with the Designated Firearms Officer for the area where the heir resides.
(3) On seizure by a messenger of the court or a bailiff or on appointment as executor, administrator, trustee, curator or liquidator of the estate the messenger, bailiff or appointee must -
(a) compile an inventory -
(i) of all the firearms and ammunition of the holder of a licence, authorisation or permit clearly indicating the make, type, calibre of the firearm, as well as, every manufacturer’s serial number or additional identification mark that is reflected on the firearm and the quantity, calibre and make of the ammunition; and
(ii) of firearm parts;
(b) on seizure or receipt of the letter of appointment, as the case may be, deliver a letter, document or facsimile within 14 days to the Registrar, furnishing the following particulars -
(i) the name and address of the holder of the licence, authorisation or permit;
(ii) the address where the firearms or ammunition are stored;
(iii) a copy of the inventory referred to in subparagraph (b);
(iv) a copy of the execution warrant or letter of appointment and if the holder of the licence, authorisation or permit is deceased, a copy of the death notice;
(v) if the firearms and ammunition devolve by testamentary or intestate succession, the names, addresses and identity numbers of all beneficiaries; and
(vi) documentary proof of appointment as executor, administrator, trustee, curator or liquidator, as the case may be, of the estate concerned.
(5) The particulars in the notification referred to in subregulation (4)(b) must be recorded by the Registrar in the Central Firearms Register.
(6) The Registrar must within 30 days after receipt of the notification referred to in subregulation (4)(b) furnish an acknowledgment of receipt to the person from whom it was received.
(7) The messenger of the court, bailiff, executor, administrator, trustee, curator or liquidator of the estate, as the case may be, must at least every three months inform the Registrar in writing of the progress that has been made and steps which have been taken in respect of the transfer of such firearms and ammunition together with the details of the person to whom the firearm or ammunition was transferred to.
(8) The Registrar may at any time by written notice direct the messenger of the court, bailiff, executor, administrator, trustee, curator or liquidator of the estate to inform him or her within the period mentioned in the notice of the progress that has been made and steps that have been taken in respect of any such transfer.
(9) The executor, administrator, trustee, curator or liquidator of the estate may only apply to the Master of the High Court to finalise the estate after notification has been received from the Registrar that all firearms involved have been transferred in terms of the Act.
(10) A messenger of the court or bailiff may not deliver a firearm sold in execution or which must be transferred in terms of the relevant warrant of execution to any person unless that person is in possession of a licence, authorisation or permit to possess that firearm.