Choosing a concealed carry insurance policy
Most gun owners view possession of a firearm in the safe or concealed as our insurance against those who could harm us. What if the unexpected happened? What if you are forced to use your firearm in self defense? Well, since you are a legally armed citizen, you simply appear in court and prove that you met all the legal requirements to justify the use of deadly force. Then the court rules in his favor and life goes on … not quite. It sounds very simple, but I guarantee you it is not! The very word “court” is complicated and expensive. Although the court may find that you are innocent of any criminal charge, the family of the deceased can take further action and file a civil wrongful death lawsuit that results in even more time and money.
Insurance companies now offer self-defense and concealed carry insurance policies for just such occasions. Since this has become so popular, there are several coverage options and several providers to choose from.
When choosing a policy, do your homework. Most homeowners insurance policies have provisions that can allow or prevent your current plan from covering you in a self-defense scenario on your own property. So consider any coverage you already have through homeowners insurance.
You also need to understand what state laws are and how they can protect you in certain situations. A word of caution though: these laws are always changing, so you need to be aware of what they are at all times. Many states have Stand Your Ground laws that protect people against civil lawsuits in self-defense situations. Most of the time, these laws make it unlikely that you will face a civil lawsuit when you legitimately defend yourself.
Consider the different types of coverage. Of course, the higher the premium, the more coverage you get. Many plans will cover your civil legal bills up to the plan limit. For criminal trials, most plans only offer reimbursement for money spent defending yourself. Various insurance plans will not provide money up front and will only pay if you are found not guilty. With all of this in mind, it is important to understand exactly what you are getting.
Some other things to consider are how much coverage you think you might need depending on where you live. Going to court in one jurisdiction versus another can be very different and can cost several amounts. Find out if the plan provides you with an attorney or allows you to choose the attorney you think will best represent you. Will the plan cover the fees for an expert witness and are the fees provided in advance or are they reimbursed? Does the plan offer a list of resources, such as an expert witness? And determine if the plan covers your family members during a self-defense incident within your home using your firearm.