Self Defense

Self Defense Insurance

First I am not a lawyer nor an insurer. The information in this article is intended to be used for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice or self-defense insurance advice.

  • YOU must perform your own research and determine which, if any, will be applicable to you.


You have just used your sidearm to defend your life.

You have just had the fight for your life, now you are in for the fight of your life.

Are you ready?


Defending yourself from using deadly force can cost a lot of money. Some recent instances cost the over $100,000 and, in one case, over $2,000,000. Not everyone has the funds available to cover the costs of a trial, especially when you consider attorney fees, court costs, expert witnesses etc. This is where self-defense insurance plans come into play. There are several companies offering insurance offering various degrees of coverage at a wide range of costs. Not all insurance plans are created equal nor do they provide the coverage you may need.


When evaluating self-defense insurance companies the following items should be considered:


Bail Bond – You need to be prepared as most likely you will most likely be arrested, taken to jail, and will need to post bond to be released. Will the insurer pay up front for the bail? Some will pay at varying degrees up front for bail, while others only after you are acquitted.


Lawyer – Lawyers will want up front money prior to taking your case. Some insurers will cover lawyer costs up front (at least in part) and others only if you are acquitted. If you select an insurer who will pay legal fees pending acquittal you will need to ensure you have sufficient savings to cover costs of the legal team. If you select an insurer who will cover the costs up front make sure you know what the limits are as you will be responsible for expenses beyond the covered limit.

  • Keep in mind that most insurers will want access to case files to make an assessment and determine if they will provide additional funds.


Lawyer Selection – can you select your own lawyer or is one assigned? If the lawyer is assigned what is their level of familiarity with Self-defense cases? Will the attorney be able to effectively mount a defense for you?


Why not keep a lawyer on retainer (just in case)? The issue is you are putting down funds for an event that (hopefully) will never happen. Most lawyers will not take a retainer for an uncertain future case as they will have to account for and track the money for years, or even decades. What happens to your money if the lawyer closes shop?


Non-Lawyer expenses – will the insurance cover costs for expert witnesses, investigators, co-counsel etc.? What is the limit for these expenses? Remember, you will be responsible for expenses beyond plan coverage.


Non-Firearms Self-Defense – if you do not use a firearm for self-defense (voice command, baton, pepper spray etc.) will that be covered? Some insurers will only cover firearms usage and a person legally carrying firearms have been arrested for verbalizing their INTENT to use a firearm to defend himself.


Gun-Free Zone – If you carry in a Gun-Free Zone are you covered? What about other areas you are not permitted to carry (bars, parks, public areas etc.)? What if you carry where it is posted ‘No Weapons’?


How is your case handled – When you report a Self-Defense claim will you be referred to someone on staff who has familiarity with self-defense issues or will they refer you to an external third party? Will the focus be on your defense or minimizing expenses?


Insurer Solvency – How much money do they have on-hand to pay for your defense? You would not want to pay for insurance just to find out that they do not have sufficient funds to pay for your defense.


Civil litigation – You will most likely be sued civilly, will this be covered? What are the limits? Are the limits in conjunction with or in addition to the self-defense criminal limits?


In summation, do you need self-defense insurance? This depends on your:

  • Likelihood to need to use deadly force to defend your life

  • Risk aversion preference – how willing are you to assume risks of paying for your defense.

  • Ability to pay costs involved for your defense.


Regardless of your decision to obtain legal insurance you need to consider learning about self-defense laws in your state and areas you frequently travel. Self Defense laws vary based on states, counties, cities and you should be familiar with the law. There is a difference between what the right thing to do is and what is legally right to do. Knowing and following the law is extremely important.


This table contains data for some most popular/advertised companies that issue self-defense insurance. A few notes on the data:

  • This data is current as of 1/1/18.

  • The data was based on what could be obtained from the issuer’s web site. If other sites had information that was not considered as it was not first hand from the issuer.

  • The NRA Carry Guard is not completed as data on their insurance could not be located on their web site.

  • You can also see additional information on

    • This is from a survey conducted in November 2017.


Smith & Wesson Collapsible Baton

Smith & Wesson Collapsible Baton

If you are looking for a collapsible baton for yourself or possibly a friend or loved one, there's a bit of sticker shock if you walk into a LE shop or tactical supply store. Some models are close to $100 at their lowest length, and you would be looking at closer to $180-200 for a reasonable length baton of quality.
Smith & Wesson produces a few different length collapsible batons in their "Professional Quality Tools" product line. The longest baton available is 26 inches, coming in right at a $49.99 pricetag. There are 21 and 16 inch versions as well, with lower prices respectively.

Smith & Wesson Collapsible Baton

This last Christmas I picked up a Smith & Wesson Collapsible Baton in the 21 inch length. I had originally intended to gift it to a relative who frequently jogs in less than safe neighborhoods, however when I discovered they live in a county that outlaws concealable bats, batons, clubs, etc I decided to keep the baton for myself. Who would have thought a county would outlaw less than lethal self defense tools, yet allow permitted concealed carry of a pistol?

Smith & Wesson Collapsible Baton

The Smith & Wesson baton is made of heat treated 4130 Stainless Alloy Steel tubing. The handle features a rubberized grip with a basket-weave pattern with raised treads. The endcap of the baton is flat, with the iconic S&W logo. The baton also comes packaged with a nylon sheath that interfaces with MOLLE strap systems, as well as a standard belt.

Smith & Wesson Collapsible Baton

When deploying the baton to its fully extent, you really have to do so with authority. If you flick your wrist with lesser force, the tube sections of the baton will not have the lockup and friction required to stay extended with use. Thats no bueno, and the more expensive batons I've tried seem less prone to deploying without enough force needed to lockup solid. The tensile strength of the baton seems hard enough to be efficient in a self defense scenario. I haven't struck much with it, so my judgement of its durability comes from how hard I have to strike the tip on the ground to collapse the baton.
In order to collapse the batons sections, you really have to strike a hard surface with the baton very much perpendicular to the ground. If you stab downward at an angle, you rise either scuffing the surface (your wife's hardwood floors) or chipping the tip of the baton. Even on concrete garage floors, I've had to give it a really hard rap a few times to get it to collapse. However that is how good quality collapsible batons are supposed to work: easy and fast to deploy, slower to disengage when the threat is over.
While I wouldn't carry this baton for law enforcement or security, I would feel confident having this in a bugout bag or glovebox where it's within reach if needed. Then again, I'll keep my Glock 19 closer.

Firearms Insider Reviews – 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:  Easier to use and less conspicuous than a bulky night stick, Smith & Wesson Heat Treated Collapsible batons provide an easy-to-use threat deterrent with the flick of a wrist

Target Market:  Civilians (where legal) and LEO/Security, anyone concerned with self defense.

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • Thermoplastic Polyester Elastomer Handle Grip
  • Tensile Strength 6638.78 lbf
  • Bending Strength: 4055.84 lbf
  • 4130 Seamless Alloy Steel Tubing
  • HRC46-47 Hardness

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: Black Only, available in 16, 21 or 26 inch length

What others are saying?:

"Vulgar display of awesome. Advantages: Ease of use, Durability, Performs well, Value for moneyQuality. These are very well made, grip is perfect, weight is hefty, action is solid. These are not for your halloween costume, unless you plan on being attacked. I guarantee this will deter just about any attack, or put said attacker in touch with reality. First thing I did was flick it all the way out, very satisfying, very. BassPro Shops Customer Review

"Okay for the price, the baton fits way too tight in the sheath for any kind of quick draw. After about 2 months of service the seam on the belt loop of the sheath busted off on the job so I had to carry the baton in a pocket. Not much later while closing the baton (like usual striking perpendicular to the ground) the tip busted right off. For all intents and purposes it is still servicable but if I could do it all over again I would have spent the extra money for a quality built reliable piece of gear from ASP. "  LA Police Gear Customer Review

Price point:

I need it now! Availability:  BassPro Shops,  MidwayUSA, Cabelas, and most local gun shops or outdoor stores.

Our Rating:


  • Weight and diameter are less than other LEO grade batons
  • Grip texture is very tacky even when whet
  • Included sheath features MOLLE strap
  • When extended properly, its very solid


  • Aggressive rubber texture on handle adds friction to retention making unsheathing difficult
  • No lanyard
  • Doesn't stay extended if not deployed hard enough

Score: 7.0 Good



Featured FFL:

For FFL services I choose Promised Land Firearms in Toulon, IL.

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