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Thread: Question: OC/CC in Denver, when in control of private property...

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    Question: OC/CC in Denver, when in control of private property...

    The title may be a bit imprecise...

    I volunteer at my Church doing overnight security/night watch quite often. It's not officially security, it mostly consists of watching the property, making sure the doors are locked, watching security cameras, and keeping the homeless and drunk bar patrons off the property. And hooligans are less likely to cause problems when there is a live person in the building.

    The Church is within Denver city limits.

    I do want to carry open while on the property, I am "in control of the property."

    Here's the data I am working with:
    1. Denver has make open carrying illegal.
    2. I do not have a concealed weapons permit.
    3. I prefer carrying open.
    4. This statute (from what I can read) says that I can carry concealed while I am in control of the property.

    C.R.S. 18-12-105 (2014)


    ...(2) It shall not be an offense if the defendant was:

    (a) A person in his or her own dwelling or place of business or on property owned or under his or her control at the time of the act of carrying; or

    (b) A person in a private automobile or other private means of conveyance who carries a weapon for lawful protection of such person's or another's person or property while traveling; or

    So two questions:
    1. Am I legal concealed carrying while watching the property?
    2. Am I legal open carrying while watching the property?

    First post here, I really appreciate the resource!
    Last edited by F1098; 11-10-2014 at 05:18 AM.

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    Regular Member solus's Avatar
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    first welcome to the forum, but I have a couple of questions which immediately come to my mind:
    1. who. within the church. authorized the 'unofficial security' of the property and is this authorization documented?
    2. whomever authorized said 'unofficial security' know at least you are packing heat in the accomplishment of your 'unofficial' duties? what is your training?
    3. do the other 'unofficial security' volunteers pack heat as well? what is their training?
    4. does documented authorization stated somewhere 'unofficial security' is in charge and has overseer rights to church property?
    5. do said 'unofficial security' volunteer(s) wear some sort of unique clothing identifying themselves as an 'unofficial security' component so Denver's finest, when they arrive, can tell the riff raft apart from the overseer of the property?
    6. see 2 & 3 above: what are the limits for protecting said facility when the 'unofficial security' individual needs to pull the heat they are packing?
    you going to shoot someone for stealing ~ not really a good idea!
    you going to shoot someone (drunk) who gets cranky when someone not identified as 'unofficial security' tells (orders) them to get off the property and then everyone's posturing and then shouting and then the situation becomes violent and...

    oh dear another Zimmerman situation has resulted from 'unofficial security' person being attacked by someone trespassing!

    this movie has been done already and it stank at the box office.

    ipse
    Last edited by solus; 11-10-2014 at 06:48 AM.
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    If OPie must ask then he is not in control of the property, particularly as a volunteer without bailment reasonable care is the duty.
    I am responsible for my writing, not your understanding of it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by solus View Post
    first welcome to the forum, but I have a couple of questions which immediately come to my mind:
    1. who. within the church. authorized the 'unofficial security' of the property and is this authorization documented?
    2. whomever authorized said 'unofficial security' know at least you are packing heat in the accomplishment of your 'unofficial' duties? what is your training?
    3. do the other 'unofficial security' volunteers pack heat as well? what is their training?
    4. does documented authorization stated somewhere 'unofficial security' is in charge and has overseer rights to church property?
    5. do said 'unofficial security' volunteer(s) wear some sort of unique clothing identifying themselves as an 'unofficial security' component so Denver's finest, when they arrive, can tell the riff raft apart from the overseer of the property?
    6. see 2 & 3 above: what are the limits for protecting said facility when the 'unofficial security' individual needs to pull the heat they are packing?
    you going to shoot someone for stealing ~ not really a good idea!
    you going to shoot someone (drunk) who gets cranky when someone not identified as 'unofficial security' tells (orders) them to get off the property and then everyone's posturing and then shouting and then the situation becomes violent and...

    oh dear another Zimmerman situation has resulted from 'unofficial security' person being attacked by someone trespassing!

    this movie has been done already and it stank at the box office.

    ipse
    Thank you for your input.

    Although that did not answer my questions.
    I have no need to prove that the property is under my control (it is), nor that the church leaders respect my 2a rights (they do).

    I carry just like everyone else out here, for personal self-defense. Obviously, I'm not going to respond with deadly force to someone trying to steal an orange traffic cone from the parking lot. And, just like any other situation, de-escalation is key.

    I don't see the relevance to the Zimmerman case, I am staying on private property, not patrolling a neighborhood. No different that you carrying inside your own house for your own personal defense. At least that's the way I understand the wording of the Denver statute, I'm just looking for some verification of that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1098 View Post
    The title may be a bit imprecise...

    I volunteer at my Church doing overnight security/night watch quite often. It's not officially security, it mostly consists of watching the property, making sure the doors are locked, watching security cameras, and keeping the homeless and drunk bar patrons off the property. And hooligans are less likely to cause problems when there is a live person in the building.

    The Church is within Denver city limits.

    I do want to carry open while on the property, I am "in control of the property."

    Here's the data I am working with:
    1. Denver has make open carrying illegal.
    2. I do not have a concealed weapons permit.
    3. I prefer carrying open.
    4. This statute (from what I can read) says that I can carry concealed while I am in control of the property.

    C.R.S. 18-12-105 (2014)





    So two questions:
    1. Am I legal concealed carrying while watching the property?
    2. Am I legal open carrying while watching the property?

    First post here, I really appreciate the resource!
    Are you bonded? Did the Church bond you? Do you have a contract with the church for example; explaining your duties and responsibilities? Did the clergy in charge of the church place you in the position of control? Thank you for your patience with the questions. The information will help.
    VR,

    Jon




    "This posting is my opinion only"
    I am not your attorney. This is not legal advice or guidance. You must not rely on the information in this posting as an alternative to legal advice from your attorney or other professional legal services provider. Please do not use information in this posting to delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action. If you require legal advice, seek your own attorney at your expense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1098 View Post
    Thank you for your input.

    Although that did not answer my questions.
    I have no need to prove that the property is under my control (it is), nor that the church leaders respect my 2a rights (they do).

    I carry just like everyone else out here, for personal self-defense. Obviously, I'm not going to respond with deadly force to someone trying to steal an orange traffic cone from the parking lot. And, just like any other situation, de-escalation is key.

    I don't see the relevance to the Zimmerman case, I am staying on private property, not patrolling a neighborhood. No different that you carrying inside your own house for your own personal defense. At least that's the way I understand the wording of the Denver statute, I'm just looking for some verification of that.
    It is going to be difficult to answer your question without more information. If it is unofficial then you don't have control of the property. Make it official, get bonded, get trained, and contracted. Then you might have an affirmative defense. You don't have 2a rights on church property if the owner (paster, clergy, whomever) does not want weapons.

    If the leadership says you are responsible for the building at night, some would say then you are in control. Get that in writing is my recommendation. I also recommend that you apply for your concealed handgun permit. Again, I recommend you apply for the concealed handgun permit. Some would say you should get the training class. Some would also recommend concealed carry insurance.

    Responsibility.

    I advocate a person's right to openly carry, however; in Denver that is not a possibility. So... http://www.denvergov.org/police/Poli...4/Default.aspx


    Bear in mind that you are not only subject to the C.R.S. but Denver code 38-117, 118 is also applicable to you as well. Honestly some would recommend an official relationship. A firearm and the law is not something to be trifled with.



    This is not legal advice; if you require legal advice you should consult an attorney at your expense. This is my unqualified opinion.
    Last edited by JonStore; 11-10-2014 at 09:48 AM.
    VR,

    Jon




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    I am not your attorney. This is not legal advice or guidance. You must not rely on the information in this posting as an alternative to legal advice from your attorney or other professional legal services provider. Please do not use information in this posting to delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action. If you require legal advice, seek your own attorney at your expense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1098 View Post
    Thank you for your input.

    Although that did not answer my questions.
    I have no need to prove that the property is under my control (it is), nor that the church leaders respect my 2a rights (they do).
    You might need to do so to the police. Your statement, on the face of it, would mean nothing legally.

    I carry just like everyone else out here, for personal self-defense. Obviously, I'm not going to respond with deadly force to someone trying to steal an orange traffic cone from the parking lot. And, just like any other situation, de-escalation is key.
    Actually, it is isn't; it's only a matter of faith to us as strangers.

    I don't see the relevance to the Zimmerman case, I am staying on private property, not patrolling a neighborhood. No different that you carrying inside your own house for your own personal defense. At least that's the way I understand the wording of the Denver statute, I'm just looking for some verification of that.
    You asked, and answered, your own post. I see it as wanting approval from those who have no vested legal interest. You would be better off asking an attorney; I would expect the church to have one.
    ***********************
    If you are asking about the lawfulness of carrying while performing your volunteer security duties, I think your reference of the CO revised statutes covers you. You do apparently understand that you are armed only for your own protection, rather than to protect the property. Where you would encounter legal difficulty is the event of performing the (volunteer) duties and then have the situation escalate to the self protection level. The question will become one of why you had not already called the police while disengaging and observing/recording.

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    A volunteer working without bailment/remuneration/contracted quid-pro-quo has the duty only of ordinary care. If he were to exercise an extraordinary tort then he bears the liability himself. Look to the insurance policy exclusions.

    OPie is looking for validation of his prejudices and not for contradiction, that he might think bigoted.
    Last edited by Nightmare; 11-10-2014 at 10:07 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by F1098 View Post
    Thank you for your input.

    Although that did not answer my questions.
    I have no need to prove that the property is under my control (it is)..........snipped--
    Welcome to OCDO F1098.

    You obviously do not have total confidence in the legality of what you are doing at night for the church or you would not be asking us the questions you have presented. So yes you do need to satisfy/demonstrate that the property is legally under your control by specific rule or exemption to the Denver ordinance. If you can do that, then instead of asking the questions, you would then be able explain to us how/under what circumstance you are able to circumvent the intent of the restriction. That is what this forum does - we share and educate.

    Were you an employee of a private security company with a contract to provide armed security to the church, then you would be covered. That however does not seem to be the case - you would appear to be a volunteer w/o an ownership or lessor position.

    Without a solid, legal exemption to the ordinance, you are at risk of having the decision made by the final trier of fact - the court. I would suggest that you consult with an attorney well versed in Colorado gun laws, specifically the Denver ordinance. Let us know how that goes.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    The wealth of information here is great!

    I am officially employed with the church, (paid on w-2) but not primarily for security. Night security is one of the secondary duties I perform.

    I was definitely biased in favor starting to carry while on night security, but after considering the replies, I think I will not. It's not worth the risk of violating the open carry ban in denver.

    Although it may technically be legal, since I am not bonded nor contracted primarily for armed security, I think I would rather avoid a legal nightmare scenario. I'll stick with the Maglight & speed dial to 9-1-1.


    Thanks Jon, I have done 1 on 1 professional handgun training, but it was in New Mexico. I have not done training in Colorado required to get the concealed permit, I live in a much more free part of the state. I'm never done training, though. I always want to improve my skills and increase my legal knowledge.
    Last edited by F1098; 11-10-2014 at 09:14 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JonStore View Post
    It is going to be difficult to answer your question without more information. If it is unofficial then you don't have control of the property. Make it official, get bonded, get trained, and contracted. Then you might have an affirmative defense. You don't have 2a rights on church property if the owner (paster, clergy, whomever) does not want weapons.

    If the leadership says you are responsible for the building at night, some would say then you are in control. Get that in writing is my recommendation. I also recommend that you apply for your concealed handgun permit. Again, I recommend you apply for the concealed handgun permit. Some would say you should get the training class. Some would also recommend concealed carry insurance.

    Responsibility.

    I advocate a person's right to openly carry, however; in Denver that is not a possibility. So... http://www.denvergov.org/police/Poli...4/Default.aspx


    Bear in mind that you are not only subject to the C.R.S. but Denver code 38-117, 118 is also applicable to you as well. Honestly some would recommend an official relationship. A firearm and the law is not something to be trifled with.



    This is not legal advice; if you require legal advice you should consult an attorney at your expense. This is my unqualified opinion.


    Thanks Jon, I have done 1 on 1 professional handgun training, but it was in New Mexico. I have not done training in Colorado required to get the concealed permit, I live in a much more free part of the state. I'm never done training, though. I always want to improve my skills and increase my legal knowledge.

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1098 View Post
    The wealth of information here is great!

    --snipped -- I have not done training in Colorado required to get the concealed permit, I live in a much more free part of the state. I'm never done training, though. I always want to improve my skills and increase my legal knowledge. --snipped--
    Having a concealed handgun permit will loosen some restrictions. There are a couple of people here who donate their time for free to give the required class. I enjoy open carry. I also enjoy having the choice to conceal when certain places require it (public library). I can actually drive on school property and place my gun in the glove box, legally, to drop off my daughter. I don't have to leave it at home. Stuff like that. I advocate that where people can get the permit, they should. It gives options, and options are not "a bad thing". Unfortunately there is a fee, this is unavoidable. And for some, prohibitive. Stay safe.
    VR,

    Jon




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    Churches are private institutions, not public stores. So long as you're on church property in accordance with their express or implied consent, I believe you're as ok to OC there as you are on your own front lawn.

    Given the fact that law enforcement types aren't always well-appraised of the law, however, I would recommend you don't flaunt it.

    ETA: On reading grapeshot's caveat, "you are at risk of having the decision made by the final trier of fact - the court," I would add the courts are often not as well-appraised of the laws as they believe, either. If they were, there would be no reason for appeals, would there?

    Therefore, I second his advice "that you consult with an attorney well versed in Colorado gun laws, specifically the Denver ordinance." You may be able to find one who can answer the simple question for you in exchange for the hope you'll use him in the future, if ever necessary. However, 99% of lawyers do not give away free advice, particularly when doing so implies a client-attorney relationship (them giving you advice).
    Last edited by since9; 11-11-2014 at 05:36 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by since9 View Post
    Churches are private institutions, not public stores. So long as you're on church property in accordance with their express or implied consent, I believe you're as ok to OC there as you are on your own front lawn.

    Given the fact that law enforcement types aren't always well-appraised of the law, however, I would recommend you don't flaunt it.

    ETA: On reading grapeshot's caveat, "you are at risk of having the decision made by the final trier of fact - the court," I would add the courts are often not as well-appraised of the laws as they believe, either. If they were, there would be no reason for appeals, would there?

    Therefore, I second his advice "that you consult with an attorney well versed in Colorado gun laws, specifically the Denver ordinance." You may be able to find one who can answer the simple question for you in exchange for the hope you'll use him in the future, if ever necessary. However, 99% of lawyers do not give away free advice, particularly when doing so implies a client-attorney relationship (them giving you advice).
    You can OC on your front lawn in Denver? There is a fine. I digress.

    The public store is a private institution like the church. The law applies on both places equally. Even if they are private property. The affirmative defenses are also listed. Where you say "I believe you're as ok"... I think you should cite that. I think the facts there are incorrect.

    The point about the final trier of fact is that once you get to the courthouse... it sucks. Some people like to play that game. Some don't. Appeals? That was still a court in my book. If we are going to argue in the strictest sense... The SCOTUS is the FINAL trier of fact... but the point remains unchanged I do believe.

    If you OC on private property you risk. If you conceal without a permit on property you do not own or control... you risk. I believe the laws should change, yes. But this world is full of risk... yes?

    This is not legal advice. This is my unqualified opinion.
    Last edited by JonStore; 11-11-2014 at 10:20 AM.
    VR,

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    Quote Originally Posted by JonStore View Post
    You can OC on your front lawn in Denver?
    Easily so..................if no one sees you.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    Easily so..................if no one sees you.
    lol But if they see you, it is a $500.00 fine.
    VR,

    Jon




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    OP - Given the previous history of Denver and its rather vehemence against all forms of carry, I would suggest you get absolute LEGAL counsel before going further. I had to research that so I would know where I can and can't carry, since my wife goes to MSU, and I may soon start there myself.

    But "control", as legally defined, may be different than you or I think. It is very easy to say you "control" the property - you seal the entrances (as technology/structure allows), remove squatters and vagabonds, possibly even clean up the occasional trash blowing in from the club(s) down the street, etc. However, it would extremely easy for a lawyer to say that "control" equates to the people in charge of the property that have the decision-authority to determine its use and/or development. As a security professional, that's not you - that's the owners.

    That's why contacting a Denver-based 2A-friendly lawyer is the only real recourse to answering this question. I've had no stake in Denver proper (Golden and Lakewood are my areas of concern), so I've not looked into it as deep as you need to. Frankly, I hope you're right. But I see the opposing argument entirely too easy to bring up in court. So be prepared, as you may head to court even if you are right - you want to be sure you're the one in the right (legally speaking, not just morally).

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    Op, you have some great information, but you have not specifically addressed questions regarding whether or not church elders have blessed you unofficially providing security? employee or not, i am sure this tasking is outside your sphere of what you were initially hired for and I find it interesting others ignore this concept and jump right to the laws of your carry.

    if you do not have permission, employee or not, to 'accomplish security' whether with flashlight and speed dial or sidearm strapped OC/CC, and something wayward happens (injury etc.,) to you during an encounter with this perceived bad person trespassing, you might not have a claim for workman's comp, you might be held responsible for your medical bills. Now if something happens to your bad guy while you are shining the light in their eyes telling them to leave, those actions could also be held personally against you.

    think of mission impossible 'should you fail, the agency will disavow all knowledge of your actions' as could the church and it's insurance agency, no matter what great service you volunteered to provide you could find yourself hanging out to dry with more problems for yourself then the church would have if some drunk urinated on the front steps or broke a window.

    so you might wish to get that sorted out as being in your job description before toddling off to consult a 2A attorney about carrying a firearm or even your flashlite accomplishing unofficially anything.

    believe it or not, employees can be arrested and charged for trespass if they are on the property when they are not suppose to be.

    ipse

    oh btw, good choice on deciding not to carry, but will you have any other 'weapon' readily accessible to defend against the cranky drunk(s)? do not trade one for another...stick with the good witness objective and stay away from drunks in the night.
    Last edited by solus; 11-13-2014 at 09:05 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by solus View Post
    Op, you have some great information, but you have not specifically addressed questions regarding whether or not church elders have blessed you unofficially providing security? employee or not, i am sure this tasking is outside your sphere of what you were initially hired for and I find it interesting others ignore this concept and jump right to the laws of your carry.

    --snipped--
    You make some excellent points.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    You make some excellent points.
    I thought it beyond scope to explore tort liability, however; it is worth exploring. I am curious if the church does have an insurance carrier and if there are such exclusions. If you seek legal advice and it is legal for you to carry and respond, some would say defense insurance is worthwhile. Personally, I carry such coverage. I can't afford the legal exposure criminally or civilly, so I choose to indemnify myself with a carrier/policy to protect the future of my family and myself.
    Last edited by JonStore; 11-13-2014 at 10:12 AM.
    VR,

    Jon




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    Quote Originally Posted by JonStore View Post
    I thought it beyond scope to explore tort liability, however; it is worth exploring. I am curious if the church does have an insurance carrier and if there are such exclusions. If you seek legal advice and it is legal for you to carry and respond, some would say defense insurance is worthwhile. Personally, I carry such coverage. I can't afford the legal exposure criminally or civilly, so I choose to indemnify myself with a carrier/policy to protect the future of my family and myself.
    Have never seen Use of Force insurance that would cover all or even most of the expenses inherent in such a defense. Most (all?) insure the initial need of having attorney "on call" and available for advice and to make bond arrangements. Beyond that, you are on your own - the sky is the limit regarding total cost.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    Have never seen Use of Force insurance that would cover all or even most of the expenses inherent in such a defense. Most (all?) insure the initial need of having attorney "on call" and available for advice and to make bond arrangements. Beyond that, you are on your own - the sky is the limit regarding total cost.
    Mine is a little better. Criminally, it will provide for the substantial retainer, as well as 250,000 bond. I pay after the retainer then it will reimburse me if there is not guilt. However, the retainer being what it is in my policy, I'm ok with that. Civilly, it will provide immediate defense and will insure damages to a set amount.

    It won't insure the sky, but I don't feel under-insured. I am somewhat protected.
    VR,

    Jon




    "This posting is my opinion only"
    I am not your attorney. This is not legal advice or guidance. You must not rely on the information in this posting as an alternative to legal advice from your attorney or other professional legal services provider. Please do not use information in this posting to delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action. If you require legal advice, seek your own attorney at your expense.

  23. #23
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    Please name the carrier/underwriter.
    I am responsible for my writing, not your understanding of it.

  24. #24
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonStore View Post
    Mine is a little better. Criminally, it will provide for the substantial retainer, as well as 250,000 bond. I pay after the retainer then it will reimburse me if there is not guilt. However, the retainer being what it is in my policy, I'm ok with that. Civilly, it will provide immediate defense and will insure damages to a set amount.

    It won't insure the sky, but I don't feel under-insured. I am somewhat protected.
    So on criminal charges you still have to front the money - there are potentially very large "expense" items. That and many cases are not decided favorably in lower court - frequently go through the appellate process. Presume you would have to bear the expense until and if a decision was made favorable to you - then be reimbursed.

    Can you link the company/policy type? Would like to review it.

    Would also be quite surprised if they would cover civil suit if you were found to be negligent or criminally guilty.
    Last edited by Grapeshot; 11-13-2014 at 11:08 AM. Reason: Added
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    So on criminal charges you still have to front the money - there are potentially very large "expense" items. That and many cases are not decided favorably in lower court - frequently go through the appellate process. Presume you would have to bear the expense until and if a decision was made favorable to you - then be reimbursed.

    Can you link the company/policy type? Would like to review it.

    Would also be quite surprised if they would cover civil suit if you were found to be negligent or criminally guilty.
    I won't speak of my carrier or my limits of liability personally, but I did a cursory search on the interwebs and came up with a carrier and policy for illustrative purposes; this example is comparable to my particular plan.

    Lockton Affinity underwrites a policy for "Second Call Defense". I note there are a handful of services they offer. The most expensive plan pays $10,000 pretrial retainer. You mentioned being found negligent in a civil case? That is what damage liability coverage does.

    Selecting an insurance carrier and coverages is a personal decision that should be done by him/her and a licensed agent. Each situation is different. Personally, the bond and pre-trial retainer for that particular plan is money some people might not have in the bank.

    I don't have any interest in the company, just for illustrative as requested. I won't get into extended debate on the advantages and disadvantages, this is an individual decision. I do sway towards recommending some kind of protection, however.
    VR,

    Jon




    "This posting is my opinion only"
    I am not your attorney. This is not legal advice or guidance. You must not rely on the information in this posting as an alternative to legal advice from your attorney or other professional legal services provider. Please do not use information in this posting to delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action. If you require legal advice, seek your own attorney at your expense.

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