News & Events
Arsenal Attorneys™ is proud to serve as the organizing committee for the National Capital Friends of NRA. The committee's first annual banquet will take place 6pm Friday, June 17 at Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, Virginia. The event will feature a fine meal, camaraderie, games, drawings, and auctions. Prizes will include firearms, collectables, historic artifacts and adventure travel. Advanced purchase of tickets is required at this link. Raffle tickets are also on sale for a Barrett .50 caliber rifle system. Only 200 tickets will be sold, $100 each. Attendance at the banquet is not required to win the Barrett raffle. The funds raised at the event will benefit the NRA Foundation, which provides essential funding for youth education, law enforcement training, hunter education, conservation, firearms and marksmanship training and safety, and much more. At least half the money raised at our event will be dedicated to grants for programs in Virginia. Since 1992, Friends of NRA have held over 16,000 events, reached over 2.8 million attendees, and raised over $600 million.
Managing Attorney Matthew Bergstrom appeared on ABC-affiliate WJLA in Washington, DC with anchor Autria Godfrey on January 6, 2016 to address the executive actions by President Barack Obama concerning firearms. The discussion addressed regulation which could require private citizens to become licensed gun dealer before selling a firearm. Mr. Bergstrom also dicussed the implications of the Presidents actions on the 2016 elections. You can read full coverage of that appearance here.
George L. Lyon, Jr of Arsenal Attorneys appeared on the Al Jazeera TV network to discuss gun control issues during the "Inside Story" program hosted by Ray Suarez. Mr. Lyon discussed how the increased rate of firearms ownership has been accompanied by a decrease in deaths caused by firearms. He emphasized the importance of firearms safety training as well as addressing root causes of violence unrelated to firearms.
Attorney Michael W. Zarlenga of our firm was named the General Counsel of Dr. Ben Carson's presidential campaign. The New York Times recently called presidential campaigns the ultimate startup venture and with growth plans putting Silicon Valley start-ups to shame. A campaign can expect to start from scratch and then "hire hundreds of people and raise and spend $1 billion or $2 billion" with stiff competition by similarly well-funded and organized rivals. Mr. Zarlenga was tapped for this position because of his extensive experience organizing complex legal structures for fast growth for enterprises operating under strict government regulations. His experience as a corporate attorney, as the leader of a startup technology company, and as an entrepreneur make Zarlenga an effective general counsel.
Arsenal Attorneys' Managing Attorney, Matthew Bergstrom, was a guest speaker at the 75th Annual Conference of the National Sheriffs' Association on Saturday June 27, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. Mr. Bergstrom spoke about a regulation proposed by the Obama Administration and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) known as 41P. It concerns firearms regulated by the National Firearms Act (NFA). Specifically Mr. Bergstrom addressed the administrative burden the sheriffs would shoulder if 41P came into effect.
In response, the National Sheriffs' Association has publicly announced their opposition to 41P because they see no law enforcement concern in the private ownership of NFA firearms, including suppressors and short barrel rifles.
Arsenal Attorneys' Managing Attorney, Matthew Bergstrom, was a featured instructor for a seminar organized by the American Bar Association on firearms, particularly gun trusts and NFA firearms. Mr. Bergstrom presented solutions for protecting clients, and he discussed the challenges lawyers must overcome in handling firearms-related issues. He encouraged the audience to provide clients informative and user friendly solutions. He cautioned that complex legal documents can easily become incomprehensible and provide a false sense of security. Instead, attorneys should focus on the needs of clients and also the needs of the clients' successors who will one day become involved in estate plans.
Arsenal Attorneys' Managing Attorney, Matthew Bergstrom, presented a seminar on firearms issues to an audience of lawyers in May, 2015 at the Hard Rock Cafe Resort in Orlando, Florida. The event was organized by MyLawCLE.com. Mr. Bergstrom particularly emphasized the importance of understanding the special firearms-related concerns of clients regarding compliance, security, privacy, and inheritance. Mr. Bergstrom also addressed various current events and their impact on clients' legal matters.
WAMU (American University public radio in Washington, DC) featured Arsenal Attorneys' George Lyon in its reporting on May 21, 2015 regarding concealed carry permits in the District of Columbia. The report quoted Mr. Lyon's blog for Arsenal Attorneys in which he analyzed the US District Court's decision in Wrenn v. DC. Arsenal Attorneys advise clients on DC firearms law, including the many nonresidents who are concerned about the lawful possession of firearms in DC. Mr. Lyon is one of the few firearms instructors certified by the District of Columbia to provide the required training for carry permits in DC, and Arsenal Attorneys offers the legal training also required for obtaining a permit.
The Financial Planners Association's Central Virginia Chapter featured Matthew Bergstrom at its February 2015 meeting in Richmond. Mr. Bergstrom addressed the special challenges of handling nontraditional assets in legal matters and particularly estate planning. Mr. Bergstrom has advised clients concerning a variety of nontraditional assets, from artwork to armaments. Mr. Bergstrom used his experience preparing Arsenal Gun Trusts for clients as a case study. He discussed the need for legal and financial professionals either to obtain expertise to understand the special needs of their clients or to identify professionals to recommend for these situations.
Arsenal Attorneys' Michael W. Zarlenga appeared in a CBS news report on February 17, 2015 conerning airline travel with firearms. In 2014, the number of firearms discovered at airport security checkpoints rose by 22%. The news story featured Mr. Zarlenga's frequent travel with firearms for hunting. He cautioned travelers about the need to confirm changing airline regulations and varied state laws concerning travel and possession of firearms. The full report can be found here.
The Wall Street Journal featured Arsenal Attorneys' Managing Attorney, Matthew Bergstrom, in an article on gun trusts by reporter Anna Prior in the Wealth Adviser section. The story, "Planners Use Gun Trusts to Smooth Firearms Transfers," discussed the need for wealth managers to address the special concerns of gun owners.
The article quoted several wealth advisers and financial planners who increasingly serve clients with gun collections: "Brian Kuhn, a Fulton, Md.-based certified financial planner with Planning Solutions Group, which manages about $500 million, says he didn’t always ask his clients if they had guns until recently. He added that topic to his routine list of estate-planning questions after a recent conversation with an estate-planning attorney, who explained the issues. Now, 'as I come across people who own guns, I’m making sure they talk to an attorney that specializes in gun trusts,' he says."
Arsenal Attorneys' Matthew Bergstrom was quoted as such an attorney who serves gun owners across America: "Think about the trust as a means to keep the client safe and legal, and to provide all of the guidance to their beneficiaries so they stay safe and legal." Further, Bergstrom explained how a trust avoids the need for a a public probate court proceeding, which clients prefer for their gun collections because they 'don't want the possibility of a public record showing who inherits their firearms.’"
The Washington Times recently featured Matthew Bergstrom in two articles by reporter Kelly Riddell concerning BATFE’s regulations of gun dealers.
The first article concerned new regulations proposed by BATFE to create new reporting requirements for firearms lost in shipment. You can find the story here.
The second article quoted Mr. Bergstrom on the overall regulatory burden on FFLs the difficult political climate. "Balancing regulation for public safety with industry growth is tricky and politically skewed against those in the business,” Mr. Bergstrom said. “If you talk about simplifying regulation on gun dealers, people will accuse you of trying to get guns into the hands of bad guys, so it’s very hard to have an honest conversation . . . And so the regulations will continue — small-business owners will be hurt.” The story can be found here.
The American Bar Association asked Matthew Bergstrom to serve as an instructor for its course on gun trusts and the National Firearms Act. This special program was offered as continuing legal
education for attorneys. Mr. Bergstrom discussed successful strategies for protecting clients who are gun owners. He also detailed new and future legal issues attorneys and clients need to know when protecting a gun collection.
The Truth About Guns Blog featured an article by Matthew Bergstrom concerning lawful possession of firearms regulated under Title 2 of the National Firearms Act, including suppressors, short barrel rifles and shotguns, and machine guns. Mr. Bergstrom highlighted the need for firearms owners to understand the nuances of 'actual' verus 'constructive' possession and danger of an unlawful transfer of a firearm. TTAG is a leading media outlet on firearms issues including the law. It attracts over a millions visitors each month.
Arsenal Attorneys have become an official sponsor of the American Suppressor Association. The ASA’s mission is "to unite and advocate for the common interests of suppressor manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and consumers. To accomplish our mission, our principal initiatives focus on state lobbying, federal lobbying, public education, and industry research."