About a year ago, I wrote a little blurb introducing one of the newest self defense legal insurance providers, Right To Bear (RTB). Since then, RTB has taken in feedback from members like me and simplified their offerings into a single, more affordable, plan which is exceptionally aligned with their mission: to provide affordable self defense legal insurance to as many armed citizens as possible.
Full disclosure time. I have a monetary relationship with Right To Bear. At the same time, they have been one of the top supporters of the blog by providing me access to their experts which has allowed me to publish better informed articles on various topics, such as what’s currently going on with the stabilizing brace rule. They have also offered readers, like you, a 10% discount off their first year of coverage with the use of the discount code: UNCLEZO. That said, I encourage everyone to take a close look at the different types of coverage available in the market place and pick the legal plan that best fits their individual situation.
So what changed? Well as I mentioned, the tiered coverage plans are gone and they now offer a single plan with four optional add ons. They are priced as follows:
- The Plan for $11/month or $125/year.
- Additional associate (like a spouse) coverage for $11/month or $105/year
- Multi-state coverage for $4/month or $35/year
- Up to $100K bail bond coverage for $4/month or $35/year
- Minor household children for $4/month or $35/year
This boils down to as little as $11 per month (or $125 per year) for the base coverage, which is quite comprehensive, up to $34 per month (or $335 per year) for the whole enchilada.
The base coverage got quite the facelift. The most notable change, in my opinion, is the introduction of unlimited civil & criminal defense coverage which replaced the amount based limits found in the older tiered plans. I think it’s worth taking a deeper look at this change because there are some important nuances. The old plan limits were inclusive of all services which means the cap included defense expenses and civil damages. For example, if the criminal defense used up half of that limit, then one would only have the remaining half of that limit available to cover the civil defense fees, appeal fees, or liabilities should they follow. In the new plan, there is no limit for criminal and civil defense, however, liability damages are no longer covered and only civil judgment appeals are covered. The good thing about this change is that the no limit coverage provides a huge amount of protection and peace of mind given that a criminal and civil defense fees can easily surpass the previous limits especially if the self defense case catches media attention. The downsides are criminal appeals are not covered and one will have to consider some other form of liability insurance or opt to go without it.
Another notable change of the base coverage is the inclusion of psychological support and expert witness coverages. The psychological support is not something that is covered by all self protection insurance plans. To the best of my knowledge and unlike the RTB plan, plans that offer this type of coverage are often limited to a specific number of visits or dollar value. This is a stellar benefit as the stress and trauma of a self defense incident are life altering. So much so, that professional counseling is required for law enforcement officers after an officer involved shooting. However, armed civilians don’t have professional counseling services readily available to them in the same manner that law enforcement does and often end up going without counseling due to financial constraints.
Expert witness coverage is usually offered in some form by most self protection legal plans but are often capped at a specific dollar amount. Once again, RTB’s plan doesn’t limit their expert witness coverage. As I’ve delved deeper into the world of armed self defense, I’ve learned that expert witnesses play an indispensable role in a self defense case and it seems to me that the average citizen is often unaware or doesn’t fully understand its importance. The use of expert witnesses is a common practice for the prosecution to establish scientific relevance of evidence (such as DNA, ballistics, residues) or to provide expert testimony to educate the judge and jury on the relevant elements of their case. On the side of the defense, an expert witness can do the same thing in context of the actions taken and tools used by the armed defender. Perhaps, more importantly, an expert witness can serve as an advisor to the legal defense team to help them build a stronger defense by filling knowledge gaps they may have when it comes to the use of force. Just like psychological support and legal defense, expert witness services are accompanied by fees which can add up quickly.
For a little extra icing on the no limit cake, the armed defender gets to choose their attorney and expert witness. Other basic plan features include access to training, education, a quarterly newsletter, and industry partner discounts. Members also have access to an emergency hotline that is operated 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days per year. Last but not least, RTB will replace a member’s gun if taken after a self defense incident.
Three of the four optional additional coverage options extend the coverage to an additional adult, minor household children, and provide coverage outside of the home state. The additional associate coverage makes sense for couples who cohabitate or are married especially when opting for the annual billing as it becomes more affordable than having two separate plans. Folks who have minor children in the house should consider the additional coverage as there have been occasional incidents where minors employed deadly force in self defense. The multi-state coverage makes sense for folks who travel outside their home state with their defensive tools occasionally or frequently.
The fourth and final optional coverage option provides up to $100,000 towards a bail bond. I can’t think of a good reason not to add this coverage as being unable to post bail can wreak additional havoc on an already stressful and difficult aftermath. This is especially valuable for folks who live in an area with a district attorney who isn’t gun or self defense friendly.
For the most part, I believe the changes Right To Bear has made are positive. Again, the unlimited criminal and civil defense coverage while being able to pick one’s attorney and expert witness are phenomenal. These changes with a much more budget friendly plan price make RTB’s plan a heavy contender in the self defense insurance and legal protection plan space that should be considered. The price of the new plan with all the addons provides far more coverage than the discontinued entry level plan with all the bells and whistles. In fact, the new plan comes in at less than half of the price of the old flagship tier plan with or without the addons respectively. In my case, I think renewing my membership this year is a no brainer.
Remember to use the code, UNCLEZO, to get 10% off the first year.
With all that said, it’s worth noting that there are some coverages available via competitors that are not available via the RTB plan. For example, as of writing RTB will not be able to assist in restoration of rights and recovery of weapons that result from a red flag incident or emergency protection order. Another example is that at this time, criminal conviction appeals are not covered by their plan. As such, I encourage everyone to consider their individual circumstances, including the jurisdiction one resides in, while comparing the various plans available to find the plan that provides the best fit. It also doesn’t hurt to compare plans again when it’s time to review as the choices available in the marketplace continue to evolve in order to keep up with the ever changing landscape of gun and self defense laws across the nation.