While 48 percent of those surveyed overall agreed the government could use information from the checks to potentially confiscate legally owned guns, 53 percent of gun owners said they viewed that as a possibility, the Quinnipiac University poll found.
Still, 88 percent of households with guns supported the universal checks, the poll said. Overall, the checks got 91 percent approval of all the voters surveyed.
Sixty-one percent of those polled who identified as Republicans said they expect gun confiscation to follow, as did 51 percent of those who identified as independents. Fifty-four percent of Democrats said they did not expect confiscation.
Fifty-two percent of men expect confiscation, while the same expectations were held by 45 percent of women.
Every Quinnipiac poll taken since the Newtown, Conn., school massacre has found "overwhelming support" for universal background checks, said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the university's polling institute.
"American voters agree with the National Rifle Association, however, that these background checks could lead someday to confiscation of legally owned guns," he said Thursday.
The poll was conducted March 26 through April 1 with 1,711 registered voters. The margin of error is 2.4 points.