When is it justified to draw your firearm?

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Drawing your firearm in self defense is something that we train for and also hope that we never need to do. Even more unwelcome is the need to pull the trigger. Today we are going to discuss different scenarios that you would be justified in drawing your firearm.

DISCLAIMER: Before we get into this, please research your local laws regarding the use of lethal self-defense. Discharging your firearm in a self-defense situation is an absolute last resort. Your life will immediately change forever. We are not lawyers, and cannot offer legal advice. We may cite NY State laws as a basis of justification to help the following example play out, however this is not legal advice either. We are also going to offer opinions, but these are just our opinions. Use your own judgement and common sense when making any decisions.

Generally speaking, you would be justified in drawing your firearm if you felt that your life was in immediate danger, or you were in danger of severe bodily injury.

Let’s walk through a few different scenarios quickly:

1) A person twice your age (we’ll assume you’re 30) and half your size says that he is going to kill you and is 30 feet away.

This is Probably Not Justified since we’ll assume that you are bigger and stronger than this person, and the person does not have any weapons. You also have some time to retreat or create more distance between yourself and the other person.

2) A person who is 30 years younger than you (we’ll assume you’re 60) and twice your size says that he is going to kill you and walks toward you in an intimidating manner.

This is Probably Justified since you can reasonably say that you felt your life was in danger, or thought that severe bodily harm could occur.

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About the Author

Brandon is the founder of Concealed Nation and is an avid firearm enthusiast, with a particular interest in responsible concealed carry. His EDC is a Springfield Armory Hellcat OSP, with a Shield Sights RMSC Red Dot, that holds Hornady 165 gr FTX Critical Defense rounds, and rides comfortably in a StealthGearUSA Revolution holster.

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