NY Bill Would Require Gun Owners to Carry $1M Insurance Policies

Yet another avenue of attack on the Second Amendment

New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Senate democrats continue their quest to usurp the Second Amendment by imposing undue burdens on those exercising that right in the Empire State. The latest attack is a bill that would require “owners of firearms to obtain liability insurance in an amount not less than one million dollars.”

State Senate Bill S2857A, sponsored by Kevin S. Parker, would “amend the insurance law, to require firearm owners, prior to such ownership, to obtain and continuously maintain a policy of liability insurance to cover any damages resulting from the use of such firearm.”

If passed, the bill would require law-abiding gun owners to buy insurance policies that may not even exist within the state yet. It would also represent a financial burden, as these policies will undoubtedly be costly. Many of New York’s State’s lower income citizens fill the freezer with meat obtained during hunting seasons, but the added expense of the insurance would greatly increase the cost of that protein and for hunting as well as home and self defense in general.

The first sentence of the opening paragraph gives a clue as to the potential cost of such a policy:

“Any person in this State who shall own a firearm shall, prior to such ownership, obtain and continuously maintain a policy of liability insurance in an amount not less than one million dollars specifically covering any damages resulting from any negligent or willful acts involving the use of such firearm while it is owned by such person.”

Even if there were an insurance company willing to write such a policy, the cost of coverage for “willful acts involving the use of such firearm” would be astronomical. Of course, none would be willing to carry such a liability.

The last sentence of the opening paragraph is also troubling: “Failure to maintain such insurance shall result in the immediate revocation of such owner’s registration, license and any other privilege to own such firearm.”

The drafter of this bill believes that gun ownership is a privilege, and that all guns should be registered. This is diametrically opposed to the principles outlined in the Second Amendment.

The bill states that, “According to FBI Crime Report, there were 445 firearm murder in New York in 2011 and 517 firearm murder in 2010,” as justification (that’s in a state with 8.55 million residents), but the New York State Department of Health indicates that there were an average of “1,098 deaths each year due to unintentional motor vehicle traffic-related injuries,” and “136,913 emergency department visits” per year from 2012 to 2014.

The New York State Department of Financial Services, mandates that motorists “carry a minimum amount of liability insurance of $25,000 for bodily injury to one person,” making it obvious that this bill is just an attack on law-abiding gun owners.