Maryland Senators Introduce Bill to Require Liability Insurance for Gun Owners

Bill would force gun owners to carry a minimum of $250,000 of coverage.

A number of gun control measures recently have been introduced into the Maryland Legislature, including one that would require anyone who owns a firearm to have a minimum of $250,000 liability insurance.

Sens. Jamie Raskin (D-Montgomery County) and Bill Ferguson (D-Baltimore City) are the sponsors of Senate Bill 577, which would require anyone who owns a firearm to have a minimum of $250,000 of liability insurance. The bill is similar to legislation being proposed in Pennsylvania, California and Massachusetts.

The Baltimore Sun views the legislation as being “designed to harness market forces to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people the same way the cost of car insurance can keep bad drivers off the road.”

How the mandated insurance would be implemented is unclear.

Robert Hartwig, president of the Insurance Information Institute in New York, told Reuters that "a legislature could in theory mandate gun liability coverage, but you cannot require insurers to offer that coverage."

“If insurers declined to offer coverage, states themselves might have to set up insurance liability programs," Hartwig said.

Raskin recently told The Gazette that “[the] NRA offers insurance to all its members, because accidents happen. Guns are so dangerous that everybody should be insured.”

The NRA offers a gun liability insurance policy to its members via Lockton Affinity.

Fred Foo February 19, 2013 at 02:00 PM
To keep guns away from criminals is *not* the point of the bill.
Corbin Dallas Multipass February 19, 2013 at 03:07 PM
I'd love to know what the average costs of this type of insurance is. Are we talking on the order of 100-500 a year or more?
Mark February 19, 2013 at 03:14 PM
Annual Costs from the NRA's insurance Vendor: $47 or $67 depending on liability limit. From: http://www.locktonrisk.com/nrains/forms/Excess_Personal_Liability_Application.pdf COVERAGE $100,000 Limit Excess Personal Liability……………$47 annual premium $ $47.00 Optional Self-Defense*……………...$118 additional premium $ Total Annual Premium $ - OR - $250,000 Limit Excess Personal Liability……………$67 annual premium $ $67.00 Optional Self-Defense*……………...$187 additional premium
JustABill February 19, 2013 at 04:26 PM
This bill does nothing but add yet another financial burden onto the law abiding citizens of Maryland in a useless attempt to somehow reduce gun related crimes. While to a wealthy Harvard graduate attorney that is now an American University Constitutional Law professor $67 a year per gun may only seem like chump change but that can begin to add up to an unfathomable amount to the average gun owner. Then you have to add in the $100.00 - 200.00 per gun gun ownership registration fee that the Governor wants, and who knows what other taxes and financial burdens the General Assembly will end up passing but before you know it the cost to legally own a gun will higher than the cost to buy a gun through illegitimate means like the real criminals already do so this will accomplish NOTHING!
Corbin Dallas Multipass February 19, 2013 at 05:35 PM
Nice, thank you much Mark. That seems fairly reasonable. If more people participated, wouldn't costs additionally go down? I'm sure the insurance lobby would be happy about mandated insurance.
Corbin Dallas Multipass February 19, 2013 at 05:42 PM
That's not true, it would either accomplish some amount of people deciding not to own guns because they can't afford insurance or those who can afford it purchasing it to be in compliance so that they aren't financially ruined should some extreme circumstances occur.
Brian Goldman February 19, 2013 at 05:51 PM
There are millions of car on the highways everyday that can do just as much or more death and damage then a gun and the minimum liability insurance on cars is a lot less. Why are they setting gun insurance requirement so high except to try and make owning a gun out of reach pf law abiding citizens.
Mark February 19, 2013 at 06:09 PM
It likely would not be a "per-gun" premium. It likely will be based on a whole host of factors including risk, much like car insurance is risk adjusted. Number of guns per person would likely factor into the risk/cost ratio.
JustABill February 19, 2013 at 06:10 PM
And that will reduce gun related crimes how exactly?
Mark February 19, 2013 at 06:12 PM
I don't now about you, but any fool who drives with less than $500k liability is asking for trouble. Now, property damage liability is different in most states and a lot lower. But the liability limit for guns would most definitely include liability for personal injury and should be at least $250k per person/insured (not per gun)
Corbin Dallas Multipass February 19, 2013 at 06:19 PM
Home owner and renters insurance often gives a discount for things like additional fire or carbon monoxide detectors, fire extinguishers, or deadbolts on doors. It's possible gun insurance could give discounts for similar material and behavioral safety measures (storage at a gun range only? Gun safe or other appropriate storage? Additional gun safety training courses?) More responsible owners means more responsible gun ownership, which hopefully means less accidents and less crime. Insurance adds a financial incentive for responsible ownership.
Mark February 19, 2013 at 06:20 PM
3 ways: 1. reduce the amount of guns in the market, thus -- less guns = less gun violence 2. reduce domestic assault with firearms as any fool who brandishes a gun now become ineligible, and if they are still eligible, insurance way too expensive 3. all people with guns charged a risk adjusted rate based on many factors - married, education, kids, criminal history, credit history, etc. For some (many) they may decide it is too expensive to have a gun, again, less market demand = less guns = less gun violence
JustABill February 19, 2013 at 07:33 PM
Mark, I bet there are lots of unicorns and leprechauns with pots of gold at the end of rainbows in your little imaginary utopia?
Nadia Biznis February 19, 2013 at 08:04 PM
Right on, I'm so impressed with this idea. This will force criminals to buy insurance, you know, all those criminals who now illegally own weapons are gonna rush right out to get insurance. Also, I can't wait until they require insurance and registration for all those other pesky things in that nasty old Bill of Rights. Who needs freedom anyhow! /sarcasm off
Mark February 19, 2013 at 08:05 PM
Wow, someone who knows how to use their brain and actually think things through with reason and research is compared to someone who believes in unicorns? No wonder your party lost. No wonder your NRA now has a counter organization with teeth and financing. With people like you, your gunner movement is in big trouble.
Nadia Biznis February 19, 2013 at 08:10 PM
This is nothing more than a "poll tax" to exercise a civil right. Criminals will not buy this. Oh, and if you're gonna treat guns like cars, then I get to buy anyone I want and take it anywhere in Maryland. No more, "That gun is too scary, so ban it." or "Who needs that kind of gun?" or "You can only take it these specific places..."
Mark February 19, 2013 at 09:18 PM
Your analogy does not hold water. You cannot own a tank, you cannot ride a moped on the interstate, and you cannot drive a bus or a semi without the proper license. Think again and come up with a better comparison.
Jeff Grolig February 19, 2013 at 09:25 PM
Mark is a tool.
Chris February 19, 2013 at 09:54 PM
Don't know about insurance, but maybe the courts could treat gun owners as accessories if their firearms are used in a crime (regardless of who possessed the gun at the time).
Mark February 19, 2013 at 10:12 PM
You forgot to finish you sentence.. "Mark is a tool"... for reason, logic and intelligence. With apologists like you, its no wonder the NRA is feeling the heat and old Wayne is more paranoid than ever (he has to pander to those who can't think themselves out of bed unless Fox told them how.
Mark February 19, 2013 at 10:18 PM
Great idea, maybe Raskin should have this suggested to him?
Mo Gigs February 19, 2013 at 11:09 PM
And how much do we pay you Jamie for devising bozo bills such as this? Good luck trying to enforce this type of insurance if it passes!
Nadia Biznis February 20, 2013 at 03:05 AM
Actually, you can own a tank-legally. Many people do. You can ride a moped on the interstate, but would face a fine if caught. Oh, and btw, genius, what I proposed about treating guns like cars was not an analogy. But thanks for playing!
Nadia Biznis February 20, 2013 at 03:07 AM
Fair enough, and if someone steals your car and kills or hurts someone, the courts should try you as an accessory. (See how it works, dummy?)
Mark February 20, 2013 at 03:11 AM
The typical right-wingers response when they cannot argue with any sense or reason - they personally call names.
Nadia Biznis February 20, 2013 at 03:13 AM
I feel sorry for the "heat"the NRA is facing, what with gaining 250,000 new members and all over liberal stupidity. They can't get the memberships delivered fast enough! I wish the Left could bring themselves to be as harsh with Al Queda as they are with the NRA and gun owners - but they lack the balls for that.
JustABill February 20, 2013 at 03:22 AM
Mark you continue to prove your lack of knowledge and true grasp of logic with every post. You also sound an awful lot like Frank but that is another issue. You can legally own a tank, I know a few people that do and one of them is here in Maryland. You can legally ride a moped on the interstate as long as that moped has a motor cycle / scooter registration tag. You can also ride one on the interstate without a tag just as you can drive a bus or a semi without the proper license, and the only difference then is you are doing so illegally. So logically speaking your claim that his analogy does not hold water does not even hold air but we are certainly catching on that you are really full of a lot of hot air yourself and seem to enjoy spewing it every chance you get.
Jeff Grolig February 20, 2013 at 03:55 AM
Mark is still a tool.
Shaka Zulu February 20, 2013 at 04:02 PM
how about we make the State carry liability insurance from idiots they supposedly educate????
L.T. February 20, 2013 at 04:37 PM
The Cons complain about people not having a photo ID for the right to vote, but when it comes to the right to bear arms, they are all about making it as easy as possible for anyone to get one. They just get their friends at the NRA to lobby Congress to make sure there are no restrictions at all to purchase a killing machine, but when someone wants to vote, make them jump through hoops.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »