“Murder insurance” leads to Lloyd’s criticism

Published: December 20, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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The gun debate is something many people outside the United States maybe don’t understand. Mass shooting after mass shooting leaves most of us suggesting, ‘just band the guns’. However, it is not that simple in the US where there is a political and societal divide around the debate.

Lloyd’s of London, the biggest insurance market in the world, has managed to get itself involved in the debate over its controversial “murder insurance.”

The company has been criticized for offering a coverage for gun owners in the USA, which could cover the insured if they shoot someone. Critics have dubbed the solution murder insurance and argue it promotes the use of guns.

In a report by The Times newspaper, it is revealed the National Rifle Association (NRA)is offering a new policy (underwritten by Lloyd’s) that covers the legal costs and a payout as much as US$1 million for civil suits and $100,000 for criminal cases if an insured gun owner shoots someone.

Campaigners say the insurance protection could lead to more gun-related deaths as it essentially gives the insured a safety net to shoot.

“The kinds of policies that the NRA offers are being sold in a way that tells people there is a threat around every corner,” said Igor Volsky of Guns Down America, as quoted by The Times. “When you have policies that proactively protect shooters, you now have an incentive to shoot first, ask questions later.”

Supporters of gun rights say the point of the insurance is to give law-abiding citizens protection for their right to defend themselves. State regulators in New York have started an investigation to assess how the coverage is marketed.