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Old February 7 2013, 09:00 PM   #11
Location: Kentucky
Re: Liability insurance for their firearms - USA's solution?

Well, the humorous part of all this is that most insurers already provide firearms coverage, usually as part of standard homeowner policies, covering theft, damage, liability, accidental use, and wrongful death. You can save some on premiums by having a nice gun safe. As I mentioned, the NRA and many other firearms organizations also provide coverage.

To go further than that would require some rough hurdles. One would be a jury that would find someone liable for something like having a gun stolen because a newspaper published the home address for every gun-stealing criminal to read, this after the government provided a list of gun addresses via a FOIA request, as just happened in New York. Another would be a jury that would find someone liable even though they sold a gun to someone in a completely legal transaction, just as you could sell your car to someone. If that person then gets a DUI years later, why would a jury find you responsible and financially liable for having sold them a car?

About 40% of guns used in crime come from the streets and another 40% come from family members. (Bureau of Justice Statistics link) Among other sources, background checks are required and would absolve the seller of legal liability because they'd done due dilligence. So this boils down to family transactions - in families full of criminals.

If you try to find a family member legally liable (which you would if you want to make the insurance company's high-priced legal team to pay out) then you'd also be in effect charging them with the crime of providing a gun illegally to a criminal. Why you'd waive charging them criminally is beyond me, as is why you'd want to call down the attack dogs from a major insurance company instead of letting the family member depend on the skills of a public defender (a gang member's relatives are probably also very poor).

So I'm at a loss as to why these state legislators would think that requiring something that gun owners already make use of would somehow reduce crime. I wonder if they've heard of safeties (common on guns for centuries now), combination safes, or anything else, either?

Strangely enough, it's only now that we're even requiring police to run background checks on the murderers they freely auction off guns to. Up to now the police were prohibited from actually checking their line of gun customers for criminal records. Of course we also have BATF directors selling illegally purchased personal guns to random drug lords on the Internet, but they're probably covered from civil suits under sovereign immunity and wouldn't have to pay for additional homeowners insurance.
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