What's the legality of forcing gun owners to get insurance?


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usmarine0352_2005
February 6, 2013, 12:18 AM
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What's the legality of making gun owners buy insurance to own a gun?


That can't be legal can it?



http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/02/05/own-gun-time-to-buy-violence-insurance-california-democrats-say/




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Own a gun? Time to buy violence liability insurance, California Democrats say

Published February 05, 2013

Associated Press


Democratic lawmakers proposed legislation Tuesday that would require California gun owners to buy liability insurance to cover damages or injuries caused by their weapons.

Ting equated the idea to requiring vehicle owners to buy auto insurance. Gomez said it would encourage gun owners to take firearms safety classes and keep their guns locked up to get lower insurance rates.

Some proposals would require buyers to show proof of insurance before they could purchase a weapon. The proposal in California would apply to anyone owning a weapon, Ting said, though the bill's details are still being worked out.

He noted that the National Rifle Association itself already offers its members the chance to buy liability insurance, despite its opposition to requiring gun owners to buy such policies.
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Texan Scott
February 6, 2013, 12:56 AM
It will be 'legal' until a court can be persuaded that this is equivalent to a poll tax: a financial barrier which either by design or effect inhibits free exercise of a civil right by citizens lacking means to pay for the 'privilege'.

Frank Ettin
February 6, 2013, 12:58 AM
If legislation to this effect is enacted, the question of legality will need to be worked out in court.

va1911
February 6, 2013, 01:07 AM
The same legality that forces us all to carry health insurance as of 2014.

Alaska444
February 6, 2013, 01:16 AM
:evil:Ahh, but that is a tax, didn't you hear?

Yeah right.

Bio-Chem
February 6, 2013, 01:17 AM
:mad:

Kybill
February 6, 2013, 01:23 AM
Simple misdirection, it's another means to registration of your firearms.

wildbilll
February 6, 2013, 11:58 AM
The ability of government to impose a tax on you to coerce you to buy healthcare insurance is constitutional because there is no constitutional right to healthcare. Just like they can require insurance on cars.
A mandate for the purchase of insurance to own a firearm is unconstitutional since it puts a precondition on the ability to exercise that right. What about the poor? Can they afford this insurance? What if someone owns a firearm, has insurance, they get into financial trouble. Must they give up their rights because they are unable to afford the insurance?
It's a poll tax, plain and simple.
If this goes forward, look for the entire tax structure regarding guns to get scrutiny.
Taxes at the manufacturing level. Sales taxes. All of these are impediments to gun ownership.
Taxes on the sales of newspapers, magazines, books.

Phatty
February 6, 2013, 12:16 PM
A big problem with these mandatory gun insurance proposals is there is no guarantee that this type of insurance is available to everyone. You can't place a condition on the right to own a firearm that is impossible for a law-abiding citizen to meet.

A related problem is that even if gun insurance was available to all, the price of insurance could be a significant burden on people. Take, for example, a low income person living in a high crime area where burglaries are common. An insurance company may decide that it will only insure that person if they pay a $2500 premium every month. The person can't afford the premium which prevents him from being able to own a firearm. In that case, the requirement would be clearly unconstitutional.

The bigger picture here is that states such as California want to make gun owners liabile for other people's criminal acts with their guns. Under the current state of the law, if a person breaks into your house and steals your gun and then goes and murders somebody, the gun owner has no liability. So there is nothing to insure in the first place. Requiring insurance coverage only makes sense if the State also wants to change the law to make gun owners liable for other people's criminal acts.

Carl N. Brown
February 6, 2013, 12:21 PM
As I recall (and I don't have time to hit the archives) Tennessee at one time required handgun carry permit holders to have liability insurance as a condition of getting a permit. The "mainstream" insurance companies refused to insure HCP holders; mainstream insurance companies are gun-shy. A coalition (mostly certified firearms trainers IIRC) set up insurance for permit holders and after a trial period of no need to pay out (the "rivers of blood" never materialized) the whole idea was dropped from the revision of the TN HCP law.

The worst recent murderer in my home town used a knife and a baseball bat to kill three people. Where's the knife owner insurance? Where's the bat owner insurance? According to rabidly anti-gun academic Steve Levitt, a swimming pool in the backyard is 100 times more likely to kill a kid than a handgun in the bedside table: what is the insurance requirement for swimming pools?

Anti-gun politicians pushing gun insurance will probably want the insurance far more expensive than any risk (in any given year, there is one handgun murder for each ten thousand handguns in private hands nationwide) OR they'll find a way to pressure insurance companies into not offering the mandated insurance. I don't trust anti-gun propositions to be fair (due process, equal justice) or to survive any strict scrutiny test of cost v benefit.

abajaj11
February 6, 2013, 01:33 PM
If such a law is passed, how will they enforce that all gun owners have liability insurance if they do not know who the gun owners are? They will need a registry first.
Also, the law can then be expanded to require different levels of insurance for different types of firearms. This will make the registry more detailed as well.
registration is a very very bad idea. It leads to onerous inspections and then confiscation. It is the proven way to effectively disarm a population in a peaceful way, and then do what you want with the populace.
:)

Sol
February 6, 2013, 01:35 PM
I don't know, what's the legality in forcing everyone into getting healthcare?

45_auto
February 6, 2013, 03:44 PM
You should go up to post #4 and read this thread starting from there.

Xelera
February 6, 2013, 04:46 PM
States often pay out large settlements in response to some nut going on a rampage. Those families in Connecticut are going to see a large chunk of money come their way from the school district, city, and state.

The logic being applied by the state, is that city, county, state agencies should not be responsible for paying out these settlements in the event a firearm was used in the commission of a crime.

The reasoning against requiring private insurance for owning a firearm, is that those government agencies pay millions for a single person sometimes, in court/legal fees, because it is a Constitutional right to have representative counsel.

6th Amendment:
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

The whole "if you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you" in the Miranda rights statement. Now, if you can afford an attorney, or you choose to pay out your rear for a good defense attorney instead of a second year law school grad who couldn't get work anywhere else besides a public defenders office because of mediocre grades and you don't want to chance your future to them, then you assume those costs.

So if you cannot afford the costs of insurance, your state has to pay for it for you, to preclude "infringing" on firearms rights. If that gets thrown back in their faces, they may wind up paying more in firearm insurance for the low income gun owners in their states, than they would be paying out in an occasional settlement.

The other drawback is that you have to prove insurance for each firearm, meaning it is a de facto gun registration program. Law enforcement does not have the right to stop you on the street just to ask if you have car insurance, so what would be the probable cause to justify checking for firearm insurance? Simply possessing a firearm at the range? Not even close to meeting probable cause.

Mandatory firearm insurance is a slippery slope, and the reason not even CA, IL, MA, MD, etc... have succesfully passed it yet, let alone had it get past the courts.

xXxplosive
February 6, 2013, 05:27 PM
They are tryin' everything and anything to disarm the public.......keep your SA up...what's next ?

browneu
February 6, 2013, 05:59 PM
Lets say they get this passed. What happens when someone gets shot and they cannot find the suspect. Will the victim's health insurance cover the medical costs or will people need to buy uninsured gun owners insurance, like uninsured motorists, to cover the costs.



Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 2

Guy B. Meredith
February 7, 2013, 03:09 AM
I dunno about legality, but if instated it should be on the same guidelines as auto insurance.

If not carried in public, no insurance required.
Cost of premiums based on risk to insurer per demographics. That would require criminals and mentally unstable to pay the highest premiums (yeah, sure), fairly high for metro area residents (the main anti gun group) and no charge for 99% of firearms owners who historically are not involved in committing violence.

Yeah, that's the ticket! :rolleyes:

JohnBT
February 7, 2013, 12:26 PM
"It's a poll tax"

Correct. They can enact it, but eventually it'll go the way of the poll tax.

Let's look at the 24th Amendment. Or the wiki version because that's what came up in the search.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-fourth_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

"prohibits both Congress and the states from conditioning the right to vote in federal elections on payment of a poll tax or other types of tax."

You can't force folks to pay a tax before they exercise their right to vote.

Right to vote; right to bear arms.

John

groundhog34
February 7, 2013, 01:09 PM
The Supreme Court's ruling on Obamacare sets a dangerous precedent. Obama will try anything to get your guns.

Warrior1256
February 8, 2013, 06:33 PM
The government decides that whatever it wants to do is legal unless someone takes action and a court says different.

Voyager
February 8, 2013, 07:24 PM
The same legality that forces us all to carry health insurance as of 2014.
This is correct, they have yet to scratch the surface of the huge bone tossed them by John Roberts this past summer with his obamacare re-write. He has opened the tax code in such fashion as to allow ANYTHING as a lawful tax, just as long as the congress enacts it.

The anti-gun political class, have an enormously powerful new tool with which to crush out resistance to their gun control initiatives, its obvious that they've yet to connect the dots entirely as to the thing that Roberts accomplished for them, once they do though, its checkmate.

What can they do you ask? They can tax every gun you have, every bullet, every lost, or stolen firearm ect..ect..ect.. The insurance thing is meaningless, once they come to understand the scope of their new taxing abilities, they can tax you for even doing nothing, just like in obamacare!

gbran
February 8, 2013, 08:05 PM
Simple misdirection, it's another means to registration of your firearms.

CA already has registration for handguns and so-called assault weapons. Beginning Jan 2014, long guns will be required to be registered.

Tom from WNY
February 8, 2013, 08:17 PM
From professional analyists in the insurance industry (I work in it.); the opinion is that the industry itself is a long way away from offering liability insurance for firearms owners. I have not seen this taken seriously by the industry as it is way to complicated to determine the ratings factors.

Property is easy to insure; your gun has a value associated with it.

Liability is more difficult to assess. From an actuarial (statistical) perspective; the area you live in, type of gun, whether or not you carry, protect your home or lock it up in a safe all the time, level of training, etc. all factor in to the pricing of the policy.

And remember, self-defense is always viewed as a deliberate act; most insurance liability policies specifically exclude deliberate acts.

mgkdrgn
February 9, 2013, 11:16 AM
WHO would underwrite such an insurance policy?

Answer:

NO ONE.

De-facto gun ban.

ilbob
February 10, 2013, 02:01 PM
what's the legality of forcing Americans to buy health insurance?

Donut Destroyer
February 10, 2013, 02:51 PM
Not really a gun registration because if the the private sector will maintain the information and not the government. The insurance company will have certain information, like they already do, but the government will not get this information.

velojym
February 10, 2013, 03:11 PM
Just a further return of Jim Crow, looks like.

mgkdrgn
February 10, 2013, 06:51 PM
what's the legality of forcing Americans to buy health insurance?
No, it's a tax, remember (until they need it to be insurance, then it's not a tax)

tomrkba
February 10, 2013, 07:07 PM
It is not constitutional. It becomes a condition to exercise a right. People will be denied the right to keep and bear arms because they will not be able to buy the insurance (or worse, are denied coverage by the company).

Obviously, the goal is to add so many conditions on gun ownership that participation drops.

mountainsco
February 10, 2013, 09:03 PM
Reading this thread got me to thinking. Is sales tax on the purchase of a firearm (a constitutional right) legal? Is that the same as a poll tax?

First post here, have a ton of reading to catch up on, just curious.

Hacker15E
February 10, 2013, 09:46 PM
Reading this thread got me to thinking. Is sales tax on the purchase of a firearm (a constitutional right) legal? Is that the same as a poll tax?

The Constitution only guarantees the right to keep and bear them -- it guarantees access, not actual ownership (otherwise the gov't would be Constitutionally obligated to provide you with a firearm).

So, no, it is not unconstitutional.

mountainsco
February 10, 2013, 09:56 PM
And this is different from a poll tax?

wildbilll
February 11, 2013, 12:16 AM
The Constitution only guarantees the right to keep and bear them -- it guarantees access, not actual ownership (otherwise the gov't would be Constitutionally obligated to provide you with a firearm).

So, no, it is not unconstitutional.
Would you agree that a $200 tax on every firearm sold would be a serious barrier to firearms ownership to many more people in this country than a $2 tax on every firearm?
Once we agree that the $200 tax is infringing, then all we are arguing about is the amount of the tax.
I think the taxes on the manufacturers of firearms and ammunition are unconstitutional.
The $200 transfer tax imposed on Machine Guns was imposed to deter ownership. That is an infringement. Now with Heller, it is worth a look by the court.

rdhood
February 12, 2013, 06:22 PM
From an actuarial (statistical) perspective; the area you live in, type of gun, whether or not you carry, protect your home or lock it up in a safe all the time, level of training, etc. all factor in to the pricing of the policy.


An interesting concept. So, those folks in the highest crime areas, usually the poor, would have the highest rates. This brings both socio-economic and race factors into the picture. Poor urban areas would see the highest insurance rates, and experience the highest dollar amounts to exercise their 2nd amendment rights. I am quite sure that someone would yell "RACISM" and "Unfair to the poor" right away. An interesting dilemma for the Democrats and Race warlords who are pushing for this type of legislation.

rdhood
February 12, 2013, 06:26 PM
The Constitution only guarantees the right to keep and bear them -- it guarantees access, not actual ownership (otherwise the gov't would be Constitutionally obligated to provide you with a firearm).

So, no, it is not unconstitutional.

Seriously, this has to be one of the most illogical arguments I have seen yet. One has to twist and stretch to find that kind of meaning.

And if I don't have any money to pay the tax/insurace... I can no longer KEEP. Thus, it IS a tax required to exercise a constitutional right.... like a poll tax

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