You probably have insurance on your car, and renter's or homeowner's insurance on your house. Maybe you also have life insurance.
Should you have carry insurance, too?
If you carry a gun, then yes, you should have carry insurance.
As the name implies, carry insurance is insurance for conceal carriers. It provides legal protection benefits to the policyholder, in the event they ever need to use their firearm in a self-defense situation. They can also, depending on which membership you buy, provide coverage for legal representation and defense, since it is common for a criminal investigation to incur after a shooting incident.
The reality is that, if you end up needing to defend your life by shooting another individual, you're going to get arrested. Unfortunately, that will only be the beginning of your troubles.
Even if it is a legally-justified case of self-defense, your weapon will be confiscated. During the investigation, you may be held in custody; that means you'll miss work. There will be lawyer fees, court appearances. Bail. And there's obviously the possibility of conviction, not to mention your attacker will probably sue you.
Do not allow this revelation to deter you from carrying. Jail sucks, but there are a lot more worse places to be.
Also, if you're beginning to carry every day, don't stop carrying and wait around until you get the carry insurance. You can get insurance today, or tomorrow, or next week, but if nothing else: you keep carrying that firearm. If you die, there is no second chance.
There is a ton of information on different levels of carry insurance on the internet, so instead of parroting what's already been said, I'm going to talk about my specific membership.
I have USCCA. Their homepage states the following:
They really get you thinking from the get-go, don't they?
I have the platinum membership. It costs $30 a month for my husband and I, and covers up to $1 million for civil defense and damages protection. It also provides $150,000 for criminal defense, bail bond funding and attorney retainer.
There's a ton more that it includes, here's a link to all the details on what the three different memberships offer.
Is carry insurance absolutely necessary?
Neither is homeowner's insurance. Like, what are the odds that YOUR house will start on fire?
I have comprehensive insurance on my car, and I'm supremely convinced that I will never hit another deer again. *knock on wood*
But will the lack of carry insurance make you hesitate when your life is on the line? What if one day, you have to choose between suffering severe bodily harm, or losing your house and job?
I understand budget will play a factor. Or maybe now you're thinking you won't carry a firearm at all.
Let me tell you a story.
Once upon a time, there was a guy named Brad. While driving home from work one day, Brad noticed a car swerving around and driving dangerously in front of him. He tried to avoid the vehicle, but ended up alongside it at a red light. The crazed driver yelled obscenities at Brad and threatened him.
Even though Brad did his best to avoid conflict, the other driver got out of his car and tried to attack Brad through his car window, in broad daylight.
Although Brad carried, he didn't want to take a life unnecessarily. So instead, he pepper sprayed the guy.
Immediately after, Brad called the police and reported the attack, but when the cops showed up, Brad was the one who was charged with assault.
So here's Brad, facing a criminal record, thousands of dollars in fines and the threat of a civil lawsuit from the maniac who attacked him. And there wasn't even any guns involved.
Thankfully for Brad, the USCCA protects for the use of ALL legal weapons, not just firearms.
In Brad's words, “...it would have cost literally thousands and thousands of dollars to cover all the fees and fines. USCCA covered all of that. I didn't have to worry about it at all.”
True story! Read more about it here.
Since we don't know the future, you need to weigh the options carefully. Will you ever actually be in the situation of needing carry insurance?
While we're discussing it, since I've never even once needed my Glock 19 the entire time I've carried it, should I just leave it at home sometimes?
No. It's much like wearing a seat belt only when you were planning on going in the ditch.
Carry insurance does you no good unless it's there, and there's no way of knowing that you'll need it until it's too late.
What's more financially feasible; paying $30 a month now, or running the risk of paying thousands a month later?