BASC has announced that, in future, members? insurance will also include £100,000 towards legal expenses cover for appeals against firearms licensing decisions. The new cover will be effective from 1 March 2014.
Concerns have been raised that some firearms licensing departments have appeared reluctant to use proper risk-management processes to make decisions in difficult cases; preferring to let the courts take responsibility.
In 2012 to 2013, some 1,226 shotgun certificates and 339 firearms certificates were revoked. Many shooters feel unable to appeal against these decisions, and others such as the refusal of a variation to a firearms certificate, due to the potential expense involved.
BASC has said it believes its members must be able to challenge apparent injustices relating to licensing without the fear of incurring heavy personal legal costs.
The new policy, developed by BASC with AIM Risk Services Limited, offers cover to members against legal expenses arising when challenging a licensing decision in court. The policy will offer protection from legal costs for valid appeals following:
? Refusal to grant or renew a shotgun or firearms certificate;
? Revocation of a shotgun or firearms certificate;
? Refusal to vary a firearms certificate;
? Partial revocation of a firearms certificate;
? Conditions imposed on a firearms certificate;
? Failure of a kinetic energy test by an airgun.
David Ilsley, BASC?s head of marketing and membership services, told Shooting Times: ?BASC is constantly working to improve and expand the benefits that we can provide. Adding legal expenses cover to our existing insurance package means we believe we have developed the best possible membership package and are offering the best possible advantages to BASC members.?