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Gun Owners in a California City Will Now Need Liability Insurance

AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

This month, a gun control law took effect in Illinois banning several types of guns and devices. The Democrats behind this initiative claimed that putting these restrictions on law-abiding gun owners will curb violent crime. Now, another city is imposing a first-of-its-kind law on gun owners that requires them to obtain liability insurance regardless if they carry in public or not. 

San Jose, California will soon require firearm owners in the city to carry liability insurance for them. It reportedly covers all gun owners, whether or not they carry a firearm in public.

The ordinance is the first of its kind, according to the Wall Street Journal. It mandates that gun owners in the city have insurance to cover costs related to “accidental gunshot injuries or deaths.” 

WSJ noted that the law does not require policies to cover criminal misuse of firearms. 

Former Mayor Sam Liccardo, a Democrat, pushed the legislation after several mass shootings. 

“Just as insurance was a mechanism to dramatically improve road safety . . .  insurance with guns could similarly have that effect,” Liccardo reportedly said of the legislation.

In an opinion piece for The New York Times, Liccardo said that gun owners will pay an annual fee, which will be given to a nonprofit foundation to "invest in evidence-based violence prevention programs directed at gun-owning families." The only mention of criminals obtaining guns and committing violence was when Liccardo wrote "not all harm results from the actions of criminals."

Dave Truslow, a firearms instructor who worked in tech, owns more than 100 guns and lives in San Jose. He told WSJ that he began storing his entire collection out of the city to get ahead of needing to carry liability insurance for them. The law went into effect January 1.

“I decided I did not want to be required to comply with this,” Truslow told the outlet. He mentioned that cities should use their time and resources to curb violent crime involving guns insteading of going after gun owners. 

Before the law went into effect, Second Amendment rights organizations reportedly filed lawsuits before the law went into effect. A federal judge tossed out the suits but said that some could be refiled due to the Supreme Court’s Bruen ruling last summer that struck down an unconstitutional gun control law on concealed carry in New York. 

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