Legislation introduced to extend some bankruptcy protections to firearms

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

Last month Representative Chris Jacobs introduced a bill to offer further protections to gun owners. H.R.7493 – Protecting Gun Owners in Bankruptcy Act of 2022 aims to extend protections to those that claim bankruptcy and the eligibility of what items are vulnerable in the estate. The bill is outlined in an announcement from Jacobs office.

The Protecting Gun Owners in Bankruptcy Act (H.R. 7493) would modify federal bankruptcy law to allow an individual debtor to exempt from their bankruptcy estate one or more firearms up to a total maximum value of $3,000. The bill also specifies that such firearms are household goods that are not subject to liens in bankruptcy.

This is kind of a no-brainer. To be perfectly honest, I don’t think the bill goes far enough to address this situation though. The $3,000 maximum value could easily be chewed up by one firearm alone.

When we’re looking at this from a civil rights perspective, why should any of the firearms be subjugated to not having bankruptcy protection? These items are associated with a constitutional right. Where would things like bibles, pens, paper, books, etc. fall into the current law?

Yes, there are dealers and collectors that could have all of their holdings wrapped up into a collection, however, there should be concessions in this law that protects what we could consider casual collectors, or those that are pretty much everyday gun owners, many of whom may own upwards of $20,000.00 in firearms. What should the limit be? Going down the rabbit hole of who are the superusers in the firearm world, that $20,000 could also be chewed up by one firearm. What if that were the only firearm an individual owned? Plausible? No. Possible? Yes. Regardless, a $3,000 collection is kind of a starter kit.

What does Jacobs and the cosponsors have to say about the bill?

“An American’s right to protect themselves and their family is not conditioned on their financial standing. People fall on hard times, but their fundamental rights afforded under the Second Amendment are ensured by our Constitution and must be protected,” Jacobs said. “I am proud to lead this effort in the House to ensure any law-abiding American can continue to defend themselves despite financial hardship, and I will continue my work to protect and defend the Second Amendment.”

“I am proud to sponsor legislation to ensure gunowners can always maintain their Constitutional right to bear arms. The government should not be allowed to take advantage of lawful gunowners who have declared bankruptcy,” Rep. Stefanik (NY-21) said.

“The Second Amendment is one of the most fundamental rights in our Constitution,” Rep. Feenstra (IA-04) said. “Bankruptcy proceedings should not disqualify any American from exercising their constitutional freedoms. As a strong supporter of the Second Amendment, I will always protect the right to keep and bear arms.”

“The right to self-defense is God given,” Mullin (OK-02) said. “Our bankruptcy code should reflect that. As the Biden Administration continues their assault on our Second Amendment rights, we must stay diligent in protecting them. I want to thank my fellow cosponsors on this bill who recognize this too.”

“The Second Amendment codified Americans’ right to keep and bear arms, and that right should not be considered circumstantial. This legislation will ensure that, even when they may be struggling financially, responsible gun owners across America are still able to access their firearms as guaranteed by the United States Constitution,” Rep. Newhouse (WA-04) said.

We’ll file this one away in the real commonsense folder. Having representatives like Jacobs et.al. introduce measures to protect gun owners and the Second Amendment is refreshing. Especially in the current climate involving a storm of anti-freedom caucus members pushing for the complete abolishment of our civil liberties as we know them.

The text of the bill can be read in full HERE.

Jun 25, 2022 12:30 PM ET