How Much CCW Insurance Do You Need? An Expert’s Analysis

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By Dennis Howard •  11 min read

How much concealed carry insurance do you need is a great question and one every concealed carry license holder should ask.  Unfortunately, the answer is not as simple as it sounds.  A host of factors influence this decision, not the least of how much protection you want? 

How Much CCW Insurance Do You Need?

The short answer to this important question is to buy all the CCW protection you can afford.  To protect yourself, your family, and your assets, you should invest in the best protection you can afford at the highest levels available.

Among the other factors that can influence this decision are:

Before we begin even to try to answer how much concealed carry insurance you should buy, it is important to understand some of the basic concepts of the concealed carry insurance business.

Exactly What is CCW Insurance?

First, by and large, you must understand what it is not.  While these plans are often referred to as insurance, for the most part, they are not insurance.  Most of the plans referred to as concealed carry weapons insurance are, in fact, membership organizations that provide legal services as part of the member premium. 

What you are buying is prepaid legal services as part of your membership in an organization.  Some of these are privately owned organizations, some are member-owned, but none are insurance companies.

Check out this detailed guide on the best CCW providers for further information.

Why Isn’t It Insurance?

The primary reason it isn’t insurance is the way insurance is regulations work in the United States.  Each state in the Union has its own set of regulations, licensing, and regulators that control the state’s insurance industry.  To navigate this array of rules, laws, and regulations would require an army of lawyers and specialists.

On organization did try this approach.  The NRA launched its CCW insurance program in 2017.  The NRA Carryguard program hired Locton, the world’s largest insurance brokerage, to manage the program.  The Chubb group served as the insurance underwriters.  

By 2018, the NRA scrapped the program.  Lawsuits and fines by several state insurance regulators effectively shut down the NRA program before it got started. 

What Else You Should Understand about CCW

Before you start shopping for concealed carry insurance, there is some commonly used language in the industry.  Learning the language used in these agreements is important.

Criminal Defense Funds and Caps

Almost every company that offers legal protection as a part of a membership program separates criminal legal defense and civil legal defense.  Both can become extremely expensive if you become involved in this sort of legal defense.

BY and large, every company offering legal defense coverage offers some level of legal defense funding for criminal prosecutions.  Each of them also typically puts a cap on the amount of funds available to you. 

Criminal legal defense is costly.  My advice is to purchase a membership that offers the highest level of criminal defense funding you can find.   You don’t want to get halfway through a criminal defense trial and find out that you have exhausted your funds.

Civil Legal Defense Funds and Caps

Along with a criminal trial, if you are ever involved in a self-defense incident, you may also face civil legal proceedings.  We live in a litigious world where lawsuits are common.  Even if the court finds you innocent of any criminal conduct associated with your self-defense, the family of any victim may and probably will bring one or more civil lawsuits against you.

You may be found innocent of the criminal charges, but a lengthy civil lawsuit can do the same sorts of damage you and your family financially and emotionally.  Chose a legal plan that has generous civil defense coverage.  You may never need it, but if you do, you will be glad you have it.

Appeals and Expungement

Many of these organizations only cover the costs of the criminal or civil trial.  If an appeal to a higher court is required, most of the companies do not provide coverage.  There is also the matter of expunging your record if you are found innocent. 

Expungement is another legal process required to remove the legal matters from your record.  Funding for this type of legal work is often hard to find, but some member organizations will have options to add this type of coverage to your plan.

Bail Bonds, Loss of Wages, and Other Incidentals

Your life will be affected beyond just the possibility of criminal or civil legal proceedings.  One of the first things to consider is a bail bond.  It is almost impossible to retain any normalcy for you and your family if you are in jail.  Any plan should have provisions for funding a bail bond immediately. 

There is also the matter of your work and paycheck.  Meeting court dates and meeting with attorneys can be time-consuming and mean loss of work and wages.  Try to find a plan that provides reparations for lost wages.  Wage protection can ensure that you don’t suffer any further financial hardships and help protect your home and family.

Many of the top plans will also include finding for incidentals.  The last thing you want to worry about is any damage to your home.  You may also find money to pay for therapy for you and your family.  Mental health can be important when you suffer severe mental trauma and deal with criminal and civil legal proceedings’ pressures and stress.

Why Do I Need Concealed Carry Insurance?

Most people have concealed carry insurance for the same reasons they have their concealed carry license.  The whole concept is about protecting yourself and your family.  You concealed carry firearm is there to protect you from bad guys and bad actions.  Concealed carry insurance protects you from the personal and financial effects of the legal system.

Likely, if you ever use your concealed carry firearm to protect yourself or your family, you are going to face legal actions.  In many instances, you are going to jail and face criminal charges.  You can almost bet on facing some civil lawsuit as well.

Without CCW insurance, financial burdens will begin to grow.  Many otherwise good people who are found eventually found innocent of any criminal wrongdoing have their lives shattered and their financial world in ruins.  CCW insurance can help mitigate these kinds of collateral damage to your life.

The Questions to Consider as You Make Your Choices

As I mentioned earlier, there are several questions you need to consider before deciding on a CCW insurance program.  Having a grasp of how these questions and their answers affect your CCW insurance decision is important.

Where Do You Live?

The state in which you live determines what types of services and options are available to you.   Each state has its own rules and regulations.  My and large, each of the major organizations selling CCW legal protection tailors their options to fit the states they do business.

Not every company does business in every state.  Make sure when you are shopping that the company you are considering offers coverage in your state.  After a self-defense situation occurs, it is not the time to find out the membership plan you purchased doesn’t cover your state.

Are you Married or Single and Do You Have Children?

You may be the only one in your home that has a concealed carry permit.  However, that doesn’t mean you should not cover the other members of your family.  It is not uncommon for a spouse or a child to use a firearm or other weapon inside the home to protect themselves or other family members. 

Most reputable organizations that offer legal defense programs also offer options to cover unlicensed family members if a self-defense situation occurs in the home.  The options are usually inexpensive and well worth the additional cost.

Traveling Can be an Issue

If you travel out of state for business, or you want to carry your concealed firearm when on family vacations, you must make sure that the membership program you chose covers you when you are out of your home state.  Some companies make this an add-on to your plan. 

Some plans restrict the coverage to your home state.   There may also be restrictions on some states where the plan you choose is not recognized.  In any instance, if you want to travel with your concealed carry firearm, you must abide by the laws of the state where you travel, regardless of your concealed carry legal protection.

The State of Your Financial Affairs

Balancing the cost of a concealed carry legal protection plan and your financial status can be a tough decision.  Like anything else, the more services and protection you buy, the more expensive it gets.  Finding the right balance of protection and cost is a tightrope walk.

There is also the judgment you must make about how much of the burden of a legal defense you can absorb.  There are always expenses that any legal defense plan won’t cover.  You must figure these costs as part of your decision.  Remember, the goal is to protect you, your family, and your home.

What Kind of Protection do You Want?

Do you want legal defense protection?  Do you need the extras?  Deciding how deep you want to layer your protection is part of managing the cost of a concealed carry legal protection plan.  These decisions are a balancing act.  Finding the right set of protections and services at a reasonable cost is the overall goal.

By considering all these factors, you can make the best decision about what concealed carry legal protection plan best fits your needs. 

Is Concealed Carry Insurance Worth the Cost?

Is your homeowner’s insurance worth the cost?   Is your car insurance worth the cost?  Is your health insurance worth the cost?

You buy each of these to protect yourself from situations that you hope never to occur.  Opting to purchase concealed carry insurance is the same.  You never want to draw your weapon and use it, but you have it if needed. 

The same thought process holds for concealed carry insurance.  Just like your homeowner’s policy, your car insurance policy, and your health insurance policy, you pay the premiums and hope you never need to collect.  However, the peace of mind you get knowing that you are protected financially is priceless if the worst happens.

It’s All About Protection

In the end, you should purchase concealed carry insurance for the same reason you purchased your gun and got the concealed carry permit.  Protection.  The protection of yourself, your family, and others who may not be able to protect themselves. 

None of us who routinely put on a gun when we go out ever want to use that gun for the reason we carry it.  However, the choice of putting on that gun and carrying it brings other responsibilities.  One of those responsibilities is the forethought to protect ourselves and our families from the after-effects of using a concealed carry gun in self-defense.

The Question and the Answer

So, how much concealed carry insurance should you have?  The short answer is still, as much as you can afford.  With the information in this article, you should make a more informed decision about the kind of concealed carry insurance you need, the optional coverages you should consider, and the amounts of coverage you need.

It is true that the odds of you ever needing to exercise your coverage are low.  However, for the cost of most concealed carry legal protection plans, it is not a bet worth taking.  Make your choices wisely and remember that your decision is about your family more than anything else.

Thanks, and Be Safe

I hope this article has been informative and helps you as you make these important decisions.  If you have any ideas, suggestions, or experiences you would like to share, please use the comment section below.  Feedback and input from you are important and provide even more knowledge and wisdom for the others who read these pages.  Be Safe and Be Careful.

Dennis Howard

A life long hunter, fisherman, and outdoorsman, after surviving a devastating tornado in his home town, he saw the effects on people's lives as they struggled to cope. He built his first bugout bag a few weeks later and has been a dedicated prepper/survivalist since that time. After a career as a fireman, Dennis opened a retail store (FFL approved) catering to the military, law enforcement, and like-minded individuals. The store built their own AR platforms. Furthermore, Dennis was also an NRA instructor in both long gun and handgun as well as a certified range safety officer. Read his full interview here.