I have been asked by some students my thoughts on shooter’s insurance. Insurance supposedly to help defend against the civil and possible criminal charges you face as a result of employing lethal force in a self defense situation. In a word; scam.
Know what you are getting into
I’m not saying you shouldn’t have legal representation, I’m not saying you shouldn’t consider services from these insurance companies. It is prudent and almost necessary for today’s concealed carry holder to consider having a lawyer on retainer. It is a sensible measure for those who carry concealed. What I am saying is know what you are getting involved with and what they will and will not do when you need them most. It seems unlikely they will come to your rescue. More than likely they will refer you to a group of “recognized” lawyers you will have to pay in addition to your “annual fee”. What really pisses me off is when organizations prey on your fears with catch phrases such as “peace of mind” and “legal defense”.
Do some homework first
I’m pretty sure you will not have peace of mind after a self defense shooting. What you will need is competent representation who will not only defend you in a court of law, but defend you from yourself. You would be much better off doing some homework to locate a local lawyer instead of paying this flat annual fee. If you do, here are a few things you should look for to help you pick the best lawyer for you.
What is their profession
The first thing on your list when speaking with an attorney is asking them if they have experience in the field of self defense shooting. Specifically, how many cases have the tried and how many did they win. Their “batting average” should be pretty important to you and if they avoid giving you a direct answer walk out right then and there. There are plenty of lawyers out there, don’t waste your time with one who won’t even start out honestly with you. You are looking for a lawyer who has tried self defense shooting cases, not a defense attorney who works with criminals. You want someone who is accustomed to working with innocent people who were in fear for their life and employed lethal force to protect their life or the life of their loved ones.
Follow their instructions
If you find one who makes it past the first hurdle, the next hurdle is coming to an agreement they will represent you should the need arise. This should include a 24 hour “hot-line” directly to them with clear instructions on what you should do up to and including contacting them after the call. You undoubtedly will be shaken up and a good lawyer should speak with you before hand on your conduct, actions and communications to law enforcement. You may not understand or agree, but they are your lawyer so listen up and commit to memory. The biggest mistake you could make post shooting is incriminating yourself accidentally and unknowingly. During the conduct of the investigation the job of the investigators is determine if a crime was committed and by who.
Remember, law enforcement does not represent you, they represent the law. Your lawyer represents you, do your homework and choose wisely.
"Everyone's got a plan until they get hit." Joe Louis, World Heavyweight Champion
2 thoughts on “Same Scam; Different Industry”
The majority of attorneys; more than 99%, won’t have experience or knowledge of the unique affirmative defense laws in the state of Texas or where ever you happen to be and they will think they can do an adequate job. You need to find counsel after learning something about the specific black letter law, case law and jury instruction. If not and your council is part of the 99%, you could end up in the penitentiary based on a flawed defense strategy. Many have. Its not that council is incompetent, it’s just that affirmative defense is a whole other ball of wax and conventional strategies will fail after the damage is done. Affirmative defense, in all 50 states, is completely different from the rest of the penal code and involves a shift of the burden of proof from prosecution to you. It’s mission critical that you can tell if council knows or not. If words like ‘accident’ are mentioned, run, don’t walk away. They won’t go to prison, you will.
Thank you for the post, your last line sums it up well and should be headed.