Liability Insurance for Gun Owners: What to Look For


Look for policies specifically for gun owners that have the following features:

  • A phone number you can call 24 hours a day in case of an incident
  • Payment for self defense if you have to go to court
  • Immediate access to a lawyer provided by the insurance company
  • The option of using your own lawyer

In addition, the best companies may include other features:

  • A library of educational resources to prepare you for a self defense situation
  • A training arm with videos and in-person classes available
  • Publications to keep you up-to-date with laws and new information on the topic of self defense
  • An online forum where you can discuss self defense with other members
  • An annual event with training, displays, and a chance to meet like-minded members of the community
  • Community activism and charitable activities
  • A discount when you also enroll your spouse
  • Partnerships with related businesses to get you discounts

Another Type of Insurance

I have a number of insurance policies: life insurance, health insurance, home insurance, car insurance, and professional liability insurance.

When I bought my first gun, I entered a new world of responsibility, and I wanted to make sure I was equipped to handle the financial consequences that came with such a big decision.

Deadly force incidents that may land you in court include negligent discharge, accidental shootings, self defense shootings, brandishing a weapon, or even telling someone you have a weapon if it is interpreted as a threat.

Weapons can be more broadly interpreted to include knives, household items, or even your fists.

Be the first to call 911 in any of these situations, and then call your liability insurance company. There is a good chance that you will need a lawyer.

Why Not Just Depend on My Homeowners’ Insurance?

Get out the coverage statement your homeowner’s insurance company sends you every year and see what your liability coverage is. I found mine, and it said it covers up to $2,500 in firearms lost by theft.

The policy will not pay for a loss if the insured directly or indirectly causes, contributes to, or aggravates the loss.

If claim is made or a suit is brought against an insured for damages because of bodily injury or property damage, the insurer will pay up to its limit of liability for the damages for which the insured is legally liable.

My homeowners’ insurance will not pay for criminal restitution. They will provide a defense by the counsel of their choice or settle the claim at their option.

When the amount of the policy is used, the insurance company is done. They will not provide a defense to any insured for criminal prosecution or proceedings.

Homeowners’ insurance will not pay for bodily injury or property damage that was

  • 1) a result of a willful and malicious, or criminal act or omission of the insured
  • 2) intended by the insured
  • 3) would have been expected by the insured based on a reasonable person standard.
  • 2 and 3 do not apply to bodily injury or property damage resulting from the use of reasonable force to protect persons or property.

So yes, your homeowners’ insurance would pay for liability up to the amount on your policy, which might cover the hospitalization of the person injured.

My homeowners’ policy covers $100,000 in personal liability per occurrence, plus $1,000 to the property of others, and $1000 in medical payment to others per person. This will cover a small lawsuit and part of an emergency room visit.

What Companies Offer Liability For Gun Owners?

I went to the websites of three reputable companies that offer liability insurance for gun owners. They are the leaders in the industry. The information in this article will help you evaluate the offerings of other companies you encounter in your research.

Prices were accurate at the time of publication, but visit their websites to see whether prices have changed.

Lockton Affinity

Lockton Affinity is the company we use to insure our shooting range and to cover our firearms instruction liability. They offer firearms insurance plus liability, firearms instructor plus liability, or just liability.

Firearms insurance covers loss, damage, flood, fire, and theft, including theft from your vehicle. For firearms valued at $2,500 or more, they request a list with each item’s value. This is not liability insurance and is not available in all states.

General and professional liability includes injuries or damage you cause while acting as an instructor during a lesson, medical expenses up to $5,000, legal expenses from lawsuits related to injuries or damage, and professional liability coverage that protects you from allegations of negligent training.

For $250,000 per occurrence with a $500,000 aggregate (limit), you pay $150 a year.

For $500,000 per occurrence with a $1 million aggregate, you pay $225 a year.

For $1 million per occurrence and a $2 million aggregate, you pay $300 per year.

Personal Firearms Liability Insurance covers hunting and shooting accident liability, accidental discharge coverage, lost or stolen firearm liability, and lawful personal defense. They reimburse you once the charges are dropped or you are acquitted, up to applicable policy limits.

For $250,000 combined single limit with a $50,000 defense reimbursement sublimit you pay $75 a year.

For $500,000 combined single limit with a $100,000 defense sublimit you pay $125 a year.

For $1 million combined single limit with a $150,000 defense reimbursement sublimit you pay $175 a year.

For $1.5 million combined single limit with a $250,000 defense reimbursement sublimit you pay $265 per year.

US LawShield

US Law Shield offers legal defense for self defense starting at $10.95 a month ($131.40 a year). You can cancel at any time. They offer

  • A 24/7/365 attorney answered emergency hotline
  • Non-emergency access to their Independent Program attorneys
  • Unlimited civil and criminal defense litigation coverage
  • Coverage for all legal weapons
  • State-specific educational videos, law updates, and online resources

In addition, they offer optional coverage

  • Gun owner identity theft coverage
  • Minor children liability (for a minor using a gun)
  • Hunter and angler regulatory assistance in selected states
  • Multi-state protection (without this you are only insured in your state)
  • Bail bond and expert witness fees in selected states
  • Payment plans

US LawShield attorneys will represent you in criminal or civil proceedings, police investigations, and pretrial proceedings. There are no caps on the time they spend on your case, no limits on their expenses, and no deductibles or copayments.

US LawShield does not cover damages in a civil suit. The attorney fees are paid by the program, not out of your pocket with a reimbursement program.

They have a special program for private security officers starting at $8.95 a month ($107.40 a year). This is only available in Texas.

US LawShield has a Law Enforcement Officer Program at $17.95 a month ($215.40 a year) or honorably retired at $10.95 a months ($131.40 a year).

Membership perks include discounts at retailers such as firearms shops, gun ranges, restaurants, and national chains. They have an online video library covering topics of interest to gun owners.

US LawShield offers seminars and workshops, books about gun laws, online coursework, legislative reports, and a bimonthly newsletter.

US LawShield one-day events are held throughout the United States on gun-related topics.

We have an affiliate relationship with US LawShield.

USCCA

Membership in the USCCA includes a self-defense liability policy. Self-defense liability insurance is a feature included with membership, rather than a policy that you are buying from the USCCA.

The USCCA offers a money back guarantee and you can cancel at any time.

As a public service, the USCCA Legal Defense Foundation provides members and non-members resources and support when confronted with

  • Emergency risk protection orders
  • “Red Flag” laws
  • Unfounded restraining orders
  • Gun confiscation without due process
  • Improper CCW permit revocation
  • Restoration of gun rights cases
  • And whatever the next threat is

Which Self Defense Liability Insurance Policy to Choose

Look at the features to determine which company has the right policy for you. All three are good companies with solid features.

If it comes down to price, Lockton Affinity might be your choice. They offer the insurance without all the extras. Just be aware that you pay out of pocket and they reimburse you after you are acquitted.

If you want the insurance company to pay the bills directly, rather than reimbursing you after you pay, choose US LawShield.

If your occupation involves firearms, choose Lockton Affinity’s general and professional liability or US LawShield’s programs for private security officers and law enforcement officers.

If you choose Us LawShield, go for the multi-state protection. You don’t want to find yourself one state over and uninsured when a situation happens.

If you want no caps on how much the company spends, choose US LawShield.

If you want education and training, go for the USCCA. Choose the level of training that will meet your needs.

A Final Thought

Don’t go without liability insurance if you have a gun. Choose one of the companies mentioned here, or search for one on your own. Doing the right thing should not bring a devastating financial loss to your family. Take care of it today.

Double Eagle Gunworks LLC provides Concealed Weapons classes and other gun related education to individuals and groups. Contact us or go to our calendar to sign up for a class.

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Carla Pittman

Carla is a Speech Pathologist working in Home Health by day and a blogger by night. She married Chris in 2008 and is working to help him unite his love of guns with his passion for teaching others to carry safely. Her other impetus for blogging is to make Americans aware of their Constitutional rights, which are at risk in the current political environment.

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