Gun Laws & Legislation

CCW Weekend: How Concealed Carry Insurance Works

By Sam Hoober, GunBelts.com

Yes, there is such a thing as concealed carry insurance. It is exactly what it sounds like – an insurance policy in case you have to shoot somebody in self-defense.

Concealed carry insurance guards against criminal and/or civil liabilities in case you have discharge your firearm in defense of yourself. You should consider it if you’re going to carry a firearm. For the most part, you use it like car insurance. If something happens, you call a hotline and start a claim after calling the authorities.

Homeowners may have some coverage already. According to Bankrate.com, look for the “wrongful acts” clause in your homeowner’s policy, and check for “intentional acts,” “self-defense,” or “reasonable force” clauses. It will only apply to what happens at home, but mind the fine print to see what coverage amounts to. Homeowner’s policies will also cover damage to guns in case of fire, theft or other circumstances. There are additional “personal article policies” that can be purchased for this purpose as well.

Concealed carry insurance, self-defense insurance, gun owner insurance, stand your ground insurance, etc., is definitely a specialized niche, with only a few extant carriers.  These are the best known carriers and what they offer:

CCW Safe is not actually insurance, but a subscription to a network of attorneys who specialize in this area. Membership pays legal costs defending any use of self-defense involving lethal force. Attorney use isn’t capped and includes mistrials, retrials and appeals, though not damages.

They’ll post up to $250,000 for a bond premium, which does not serve as bond collateral.

The base plan is $129 per year for singles or $199 per year for couples. Law enforcement or military personnel receive a $30 discount. Bond coverage is upgradeable to $1 million for an additional $50 per year for singles, and $80 for couples. A concealed license is required.

Concealed Weapon Insurance is actually insurance, and allocates up to $500,000 for civil defense, $150,000 for criminal defense, $15,000 for defense attorney retainer, $50,000 for body and property damage, and up to $550 per diem for lost wages.

Plans range from $179 to $379 per person per year. If a spouse purchases a policy, they’ll take $79 off the total. Coverage varies by plan, but all feature $50,000 for damages. Only acts of self-defense are covered, and a concealed license is required.

The US Concealed Carry Association offers insurance with membership. Plans range from $147 per year/$13 per month to $347 per year/$30 per month.

Coverage is $250,000 to $1 million for civil defense/damages, $50,000 to $100,000 for criminal defense, $2,500 to $10,000 for bail bond premiums and $250 to $500 per day lost to court proceedings. They’ll refer to you to a local attorney, and can get you psychological counseling.

They also toss in 8 annual issues of “Concealed Carry” magazine.

NRA Insurance for self-defense ranges from $165 to $600 per year, with $100,000 to $1 million in total coverage for civil defense and property/injury damages, and $50,000 to $100,000 for criminal defense. Spouses are included.

The NRA states very little, except that these are “reimbursements.” That suggests an indemnity plan, which is where an insurance company pays you back for expenses, so you might have substantial costs up front.

Second Call Defense offers CCW insurance plans for $9.95, $19.95 or $39.95 per month. Coverage levels are available up to $250,000 (each) for civil damages, accidental shooting and criminal defense. The second- and third-most expensive plans include unlimited civil defense coverage.

Bond deposits range from $1,000 to $25,000, attorney retainers to $10,000, up to $2,000 for “aftermath cleanup” and up to $500 per diem in lost wages. It is the only policy to cover accidental shootings.

CCW insurance from the Self Defense Association comes in two plan levels: Silver and Gold. These memberships get you $100,000 or $250,000 in “self-defense coverage” for criminal and/or civil defense costs and bail bond coverage. Costs are $179 per year for Silver and $288 per year for Gold, which also gets carriers discounts at Cabela’s.

There are a few other companies offering similar services. While not strictly concealed carry insurance, per se, the U.S. Defense Shield Network and Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network will help pay a legal retainer in case of a self-defense incident. If considering this type of insurance, do some research and find out which fits the best for you.

Sam Hoober is Contributing Editor for GunBelts.com, a subsidiary of Hayden-based Tedder Industries, where he writes about gun accessories, gun safety, open and concealed carry tips.

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