Laws & Rights
A Comparison Of Firearms Legal Defense Companies
You hear us talking about the defensive use of a gun, when you can and cannot to use your firearm in self-defense, the best way to use it, the kind of guns you may want to have on your person should you ever need it to defend yourself, and so on. One thing we don’t talk a lot about, is what happens after you pull the gun from your holster.
As responsible gun owners, take some time to learn about the different firearms legal defense programs and the services they provide.
RELATED: The Best Way to Learn Your Home State’s Gun Laws: Part 1
In this article:
The Importance of Firearms Legal Defense
Firearms Legal Protection Reviews
Gun owners should have some knowledge about firearms legal defense insurance programs. You hear us talking about the defensive use of a gun, the best time to use your firearm in self-defense, the right way to use it, the kinds of guns you can carry, and so on.
Believe it or not, if you ever have to use your gun to defend yourself, the part where you use your gun will likely be the easiest portion of the entire ordeal. The aftermath, which is sadly something most people don’t talk about, is usually what ties people up for months at a time.
There could be court dates, attorneys and fees, judgments, and a bunch of other stuff that causes a lot of heartache and strife if you lack preparation.
US Law Shield
This is one of the reasons why many people get some sort of coverage from firearms law companies. I wanted to take just a moment of your time to discuss some of the more popular programs out there right now.
In my experience, this is, if not the absolute best, one of the best programs of the lot. I’m a member and will be until I move to a state they are unavailable in (which is coming fast).
The fact that they aren’t yet in all 50 states, in my own humble opinion, is the only downside. This will be a deal breaker for those who don’t live in one of the states they’re in.
They do offer a multi-state program. So, if you live in a state that is covered and you travel a lot, you’re good to go.
I have the multi-state plan, which costs an extra two or three dollars each month. Whenever I need to travel, I call up the program attorney and have him write me a professional opinion letter.
It details exactly what I need to do in each state I’m in with my firearm. The good thing about this program is you get to meet your attorneys at their local gun-law seminars.
So, if you are to go to a seminar (which only costs $10 if you are not a member and is free if you are), you’d meet one of the lawyers that would defend you. If you have a non-emergency question about the gun laws in your state, you can call the non-emergency hotline and get in touch with a program attorney for no extra cost.
The program is affordable at $10.95 per month. There are no caps or limits on the amount of attorney time/coverage you get which is great if for civil or criminal reasons.
And, if you ever need it, you simply call the number on the back of your card no matter what time of day or night it is, and an on-call attorney will answer the phone and take care of you from that point on. Here is more information on US Law Shield.
In a lot of regards, CCW Safe is a lot like US Law Shield with a few differences. One of the main differences is that this program is available in more areas (all 50 states).
Then again, a downside is the fact that an operator answers the phone, not an on-call attorney. If you’re in an area where you cannot get the aforementioned program, I recommend this one, next.
When you’re potentially next in line for jail, it’s best to get on the phone with an attorney as soon as possible to make sure they know what’s going on. Out of fairness, I do want to state that the operator from CCW Safe will transfer you to an attorney, but it’s an extra step I’d rather not have to take.
The price of this program is similar to the aforementioned program coming in at $129.00 annually for a single member. There are no caps or maximums on the amount of coverage you get.
RELATED: How To Fly With A Firearm
I’ve heard great things about USCCA’s monthly magazine. Though I have personally never read it. USCCA program has different tiers depending on the amount of coverage that you’ll get.
The silver level costs $147 annually (or $13/month) which gets you $300K of firearms legal protection. The gold level costs $247 annually (or $22/month), and gets you $575K in legal protection.
Finally, the platinum level costs $347 annually (or $30/month), and gets you $1.125 million in legal coverage.
The program is available in all 50 states and the money you get for your defense is good for civil and criminal proceedings as well as bail bonds and compensation while in civil court. To my understanding, this is the only program which offers compensation while in court.
Another interesting aspect of this insurance is you get to pick your own attorney or have one from USCCA. For civil proceedings, you must use one of theirs.
It doesn’t clearly state why this is.
Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network
This program is not as popular as the others and it’s not as comprehensive. In fact, it can be a bit confusing to figure out.
They have some heavy hitters on their expert list, like Massad Ayoob, who is one of the foremost experts on firearms in the country. For $135 annually, you can get an initial deposit of $10K to your attorney of choice.
Your case needs to face an advisory panel to decide whether they’ll give you more money or not. They also send out other goodies, like instructional DVDs and books to help you learn the ins and outs of the use of force and what to do after it’s needed.
Here’s a short video by U.S. LawShield about reasons why legal gun owners go to jail:
If you are a serious concealed gun carrier who’s willing to use your firearm to defend yourself and others, it’s silly to think that you don’t need an attorney on your side to help you defend yourself. The firearms landscape is unsteady, at best, and continuously gets harder for us all the time.
This is important because as more anti-gun judges are inserted into their positions, it gets harder for us legal gun owners to defend ourselves and we’ll need whatever ammo we can get on our side to ensure our personal freedom.
Do you have any experience with legal issues pertaining to your firearm? Tell us about it in the comments section below!
- Gun Hiding Places in Your Car
- Why Carry A Gun: 5 Reasons Why And The 2nd Amendment
- Top 11 Handguns In 9mm For Less Than $750
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published 0n July 18, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.
November 19, 2020 at 7:20 AM
You’re leaving out some major factors in your comparison. Law Shield doesn’t cover Court Costs, Filing Fees, or Domestic Violence. Additional, only USCCA and CCW Safe cover Civil Damages. For CCW Safe you have to pay $499 a year for 1 Million dollars of Civil Damages Protection. With USCCA you get twice as much for $299 a year, plus a whole lot more educational training and the excellent Concealed Carry magazine.
February 1, 2018 at 9:42 AM
I believe your pricing for Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network are incorrect. All I’ll add beyond that is do your research. Speak to attorneys if they are recommended before purchasing. Ask for references if possible. I’ve seen articles that one of these companies had an insurance, i.e. money, backer that didn’t have the funds to guarantee their product. Also remember, these are not full proof remedies for poor judgement. Everyone of these companies will review your case to make sure they are representing a truthful, responsibly armed individual. If you initiated or escalated the incident, chances are they will not be assisting you in any defense.
December 8, 2017 at 3:54 PM
USCCA no longer has the silver plan. Right?
Robert M Gonzales
April 27, 2017 at 2:35 PM
Curious as to your opinion of Firearms Legal Protection LLC.
April 22, 2017 at 12:33 AM
From the US Law Shield Web site 4/22/17 FAQ:
“Does this program pay for the bond if I am charged with a crime for the use of a gun?
NO bond coverage makes this one a non-starter.
Robb at USCCA
July 21, 2016 at 3:55 PM
Hi folks, couple quick clarifications on USCCA’s Coverage (Full disclosure, I work for USCCA).
Because our memberships are insurance backed, our insurance provider, United Specialty Insurance out of Bedford, TX, make sure that we have the resources to pay for your civil suit defense and damages, particularly when multiple cases are involved like the 21 that we have going as of the writing of this comment.
As a result, our insurer has a stake in the outcome of your civil case.
THANKFULLY this puts you and them on the same side when it comes to minimizing judgment amounts and they will do their very best because it directly impacts their organization and your best outcome (the smallest judgment possible or none!) is their best outcome too.
You CAN use your own civil attorney as long as our insurer is able to vette them and ensure that all parties’ stakes are taken care of.
July 21, 2016 at 8:40 PM
Thanks for the clarity!
Robb at USCCA
July 22, 2016 at 11:57 AM
A pleasure to do so!
I have a feeling this link may help a lot of folks get the full picture on USCCA
Bear in mind when reading this: members are named insured, the USCCA is the insured party and we extend you the benefits. No deductibles for our members to worry about.
July 18, 2016 at 2:41 PM
Have you looked at http://www.mylegalshield.com? I have it but haven’t asked yet about gun specific protection.