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Old January 29, 2020, 09:14 AM   #1
American Man
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Do you let friends shoot on your land? If so, what about letting their children shoot too?

On the rare occasions I have friends visit me, we usually do some shooting, rifle and pistol. Usually the first thing that pops in their heads is, "I'll have to bring the kid's next time". And I always say, "no kids shooting on my land, sorry". Sometimes it is understood, but some have taken it as an insult. I don't even allow some friends to shoot at all. My friends are mostly LE and Feds and those are the friends I let shoot here. I have a regular civilian friend who has some of the best weapons and equipment money can buy, but I don't let him come up here where I live now and let him loose on my ranges. I gave him all the info on local ranges closer to him and told him I will go with him to help him out... 10 years of having all this equipment and he has not fired a single round out of any of them. High end scopes, expensive red dots on everything, thermals... but can't find the time to start at a 25 yard indoor range... but he wants to take his kid up here too. lol No Way.

If one of my other friends who I let shoot get hurt for some reason, it is likely that nothing is going to fall back on me... that is not 100% true though. I know lawyers that work for hospitals will be researching exactly who is going to pay them, especially when some injuries require multiple investigations. I even tell them to make sure their higher ups are ok with shooting in the woods with friend... but I don't make them produce a permission slip. lol

Anyone have a similar situation? I just don't see my land being necessary for someone to instruct their kids on my land and not in a much more controlled environment to start their experience. I'm all for assisting at the wildlife club and other ranges. Things can go wrong and why should I put everything on the line?

Last edited by American Man; January 29, 2020 at 09:39 AM.
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:34 AM   #2
NoSecondBest
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I totally don't agree with you. Most of what you're saying has no basis in logic. I have a hundred and sixty-five acres and I have a shooting range on it. I often bring friends out to shoot and I never give it a concern. However, I'm not mindless about it either. I insist that they can only come when invited and I'm there also. I make it clear that they aren't to be there if I'm not there. Period. All that being said, I'm a retired safety manager and a former match director and range officer. I go over all the safety rules before we start shooting and explain the consequences of violating any safety rules of the range. Not only does this keep everyone safe, it's a good teaching time for both the children and the adult friends. In your case you can do what you want, but it sounds more like a problem you think you have rather than a real one. Just my opinion...
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:42 AM   #3
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If your home range is set up safely so a bullet can not get off your land, why the issue of not letting the kids of friends you trust to shoot there? Unless they get hurt due to something unsafe due to your carelessness, I don't see how you could be liable. If you're liable for the kids....aren't you liable for the parents too?

That said, there are folks I do not allow to shoot at my home range, but it has nuttin' to do with liability, but their unsafe shooting practices. There are some that have shown me they are responsible and are not allowed back, and some that have not yet proved to me they are a safe shooter. Kids, that need to be taught, get taught, properly. Generally without the distractions one finds at public ranges.

You range, your rules, and you can set rules under any premise you want. Just wonder why it is you think kids are not as safe as their parents? I teach hunter safety and have found for the most part, young kids are safer than their parents and grandparents. O would assume any ambulance chasing lawyer would go after you just as heartily if it was a parent that got hurt.
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Old January 29, 2020, 10:46 AM   #4
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Your land, your rules - but I think you are overthinking the liability issue. The liability should be the same regardless of whether you have adults there or adults with their kids.
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Old January 29, 2020, 02:29 PM   #5
zincwarrior
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Quote:
Originally Posted by American Man View Post
On the rare occasions I have friends visit me, we usually do some shooting, rifle and pistol. Usually the first thing that pops in their heads is, "I'll have to bring the kid's next time". And I always say, "no kids shooting on my land, sorry". Sometimes it is understood, but some have taken it as an insult. I don't even allow some friends to shoot at all. My friends are mostly LE and Feds and those are the friends I let shoot here. I have a regular civilian friend who has some of the best weapons and equipment money can buy, but I don't let him come up here where I live now and let him loose on my ranges. I gave him all the info on local ranges closer to him and told him I will go with him to help him out... 10 years of having all this equipment and he has not fired a single round out of any of them. High end scopes, expensive red dots on everything, thermals... but can't find the time to start at a 25 yard indoor range... but he wants to take his kid up here too. lol No Way.

If one of my other friends who I let shoot get hurt for some reason, it is likely that nothing is going to fall back on me... that is not 100% true though. I know lawyers that work for hospitals will be researching exactly who is going to pay them, especially when some injuries require multiple investigations. I even tell them to make sure their higher ups are ok with shooting in the woods with friend... but I don't make them produce a permission slip. lol

Anyone have a similar situation? I just don't see my land being necessary for someone to instruct their kids on my land and not in a much more controlled environment to start their experience. I'm all for assisting at the wildlife club and other ranges. Things can go wrong and why should I put everything on the line?
You have no duty to anyone here. You can admit or not admit anyone for any reason you choose. Its your land not theirs.

Remember, lawyers can and do sue over anything The only way to absolutely insure you are not sued is to not have the activity in the first place.
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Old January 29, 2020, 03:05 PM   #6
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Your land, your rules.

But I find your reasoning to be convoluted, hypocritical, and illogical.

For example...

What makes you think that a cop is any less likely to sue you than anyone else?
Cops are people, too. Good people. Flawed people. Bad people. ...Just like all the other people.

You're operating under false pretenses.
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Old January 29, 2020, 03:10 PM   #7
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American Man -

I'm not going to reproduce your entire post. I read it. Nowhere in the entire post did I see any explanation for why you only allow certain friends to shoot on your land, and why you absolutely exclude other people. Since you didn't state any reasons, I'm unclear as to what sort of discussion you hoped to begin.
Is it safe to assume that you are concerned about liability? If that's what this is about, I agree with others who have responded. ANYONE who is injured on your land is likely to sue you. ANYONE. Especially LEOs. If they lose time from work and it's not on duty, they aren't covered by workers compensation or whatever the equivalent is for LEOs, so their lawyer is going to be looking for a source to replace that lost income. If the incident occurred on your land, even if it doesn't appear to have been your fault ... count on a lawyer to try to make it into your fault.
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Old January 29, 2020, 04:14 PM   #8
American Man
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Ok, I didn't break it down good enough. My home is my castle, everything that happens on my land is my responsibility and my main worry is some kind of lawsuit for reasons that I could easily foresee but others cannot. I slipped in at the end of my post "Things can go wrong and why should I put everything on the line?" Is a kid really on the same level as an adult? Is everyone's friends at the same skill level? I did kind of go into some friends having more experience than others... even if i just mentioned their occupation vs. the person I stated that has ZERO experience. Things can go wrong, that includes any situation that could possibly go wrong while shooting. No basis in logic?, hypocritical and conovluted? Come on.

It's not just my land and home at risk, it is everything... every money account I have... throw in tractor, RVs etc... Everything. Tell me if I am wrong on that. Is anything spared from a lawsuit?

Reasons I prefer some friends over others: My train of thought, which I now question even more after reading Aguila Blanca's post, was that I'd somehow be at less risk if a friend, many who have been in ABC agencies for over 25 years, manages to get themselves injured. My thinking that someone who could be expected to get into a combat situation at anytime anywhere in this country, should be able to handle posting some shoot and see's or some steel targets and not have me micromanage their every move. For over 10 years now, that has pretty much been my approach and we have a good time. One of my friends who was shooting on my land, drove home the next day and killed himself. I didn't even think about what could have happened if he did that here till a few years later. And he gave no sign whatsoever... otherwise we would not have been shooting.

In my thinking, I don't want some civilian friend of mine, who is a very close friend, who has no experience shooting, coming up here and shooting for the first time and on top of that bring his kid who has never used a firearm. I'd rather them, at their own convenience, hit a range and get the basics before anything.

I asked if anyone had a similar situation? I want to know how others have handled this. Maybe someone on here has had an accident on their land and might mention how they handled it.

I think I have been making a mistake allowing anyone to shoot here. Now I will get even less Christmas cards.
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Old January 29, 2020, 04:51 PM   #9
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It's your property and it sounds like you made up your mind a long time ago about how to deal with it. What's the point of your post? Do whatever you want, you don't need anyone's blessing. There's all kinds of different people in the world. Enjoy your castle, I'm enjoying mine.....with friends.
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Old January 29, 2020, 05:00 PM   #10
spacemanspiff
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I think I understand American Man's intent. It isn't just kids he doesn't allow to shoot on his land, he makes judgement calls on adults as well. Nothing wrong with that. He invites specific friends to shoot with him. No big deal.

As to the liability, insurance settlements do not have to involve courts and lawsuits. There is plenty of risk just from having people on your property, whether or not the property owner is using the land as a shooting range.

You have to consider worst case scenarios. Suppose someone did get hurt while shooting on American Mans property. Even if his insurance company finds the policy has no coverage at all, and declines the claim, theres a good chance they will cancel his policy, or increase his rates.

Many people would find it is not worth the risk.
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Old January 29, 2020, 05:09 PM   #11
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I agree, that I wouldn’t be in a hurry to have someone who’s got a small fortune in high quality firearms and accessories, but never manages to get to any range and even shoot a single box of ammo in years, come and shoot on my land, let alone with their kids.

On the other hand. If you have the time, patience and desire, you have one of the best teaching opportunities anyone could ever ask for.

Let me put it this way. If you WANT to teach this fellow and his kids, because that will be an enjoyable experience for you. Then go right ahead.

Have him (on his own for a time or two) or all of them come over, and start the whole group off with ONE 22 rifle. That way everyone’s focus will be on ONE gun and how to handle it safely and fire it effectively. Everyone will be doing their best to impress based on your guidance and overall control of the situation.

You have the opportunity to start these folks off by teaching them the right way and the long way in a secure and private environment. But only if you are interested in providing them that experience, and they have the patience to follow your rules and respect your authority.

Someday, after enough successful lessons and training days. They might have enough confidence in them selves to go to a public range when you are not available so they can enjoy their new found love of shooting on their own time.

And as your confidence in them grows, you might allow your friend to bring over some of his nicer stuff so that he can experience a greater level of enjoyment when firing all these things for the first time instead of just pulling the trigger like a complete amateur.

As far as anyone else is concerned, if they are an experienced shooter and can demonstrate safe gun handling while around you at all times, I don’t think you need to be worried.

It’s good to have faith in people. It is also good to teach people to have faith in themselves.
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Old January 29, 2020, 05:41 PM   #12
American Man
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacemanspiff View Post
I think I understand American Man's intent. It isn't just kids he doesn't allow to shoot on his land, he makes judgement calls on adults as well. Nothing wrong with that. He invites specific friends to shoot with him. No big deal.

As to the liability, insurance settlements do not have to involve courts and lawsuits. There is plenty of risk just from having people on your property, whether or not the property owner is using the land as a shooting range.

You have to consider worst case scenarios. Suppose someone did get hurt while shooting on American Mans property. Even if his insurance company finds the policy has no coverage at all, and declines the claim, theres a good chance they will cancel his policy, or increase his rates.

Many people would find it is not worth the risk.
I don't now why some people are getting bent out of shape cause of this post. Lucky for them, this is the internet. And you're right about other risks... I don't let people ride through my land on their 4 wheelers. I guess I am satan now to those who offered their garbage responses.

I do appreciate your response though. Thanks.
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Old January 29, 2020, 05:52 PM   #13
American Man
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Originally Posted by mellow_c View Post
I agree, that I wouldn’t be in a hurry to have someone who’s got a small fortune in high quality firearms and accessories, but never manages to get to any range and even shoot a single box of ammo in years, come and shoot on my land, let alone with their kids.

On the other hand. If you have the time, patience and desire, you have one of the best teaching opportunities anyone could ever ask for.

Let me put it this way. If you WANT to teach this fellow and his kids, because that will be an enjoyable experience for you. Then go right ahead.

Have him (on his own for a time or two) or all of them come over, and start the whole group off with ONE 22 rifle. That way everyone’s focus will be on ONE gun and how to handle it safely and fire it effectively. Everyone will be doing their best to impress based on your guidance and overall control of the situation.

You have the opportunity to start these folks off by teaching them the right way and the long way in a secure and private environment. But only if you are interested in providing them that experience, and they have the patience to follow your rules and respect your authority.

Someday, after enough successful lessons and training days. They might have enough confidence in them selves to go to a public range when you are not available so they can enjoy their new found love of shooting on their own time.

And as your confidence in them grows, you might allow your friend to bring over some of his nicer stuff so that he can experience a greater level of enjoyment when firing all these things for the first time instead of just pulling the trigger like a complete amateur.

As far as anyone else is concerned, if they are an experienced shooter and can demonstrate safe gun handling while around you at all times, I don’t think you need to be worried.

It’s good to have faith in people. It is also good to teach people to have faith in themselves.
I offered years ago to start him and his son out right and that there would not be a whole lot of shooting to start the day off. Then I am given time constraints and other excuses so in order to just not strain a friendship, I told him No and we'll have to work out a better time. And that was years ago... right about 10 years. But he persists with wanting to just ride up for a couple hours. I'm not going for it.

You suggested he come over by himself... I tried that too. lol He couldn't manage the time. Oh well. I'm glad you see I should not be in some rush to have him come over.
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Old January 29, 2020, 07:07 PM   #14
reynolds357
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Originally Posted by American Man View Post
On the rare occasions I have friends visit me, we usually do some shooting, rifle and pistol. Usually the first thing that pops in their heads is, "I'll have to bring the kid's next time". And I always say, "no kids shooting on my land, sorry". Sometimes it is understood, but some have taken it as an insult. I don't even allow some friends to shoot at all. My friends are mostly LE and Feds and those are the friends I let shoot here. I have a regular civilian friend who has some of the best weapons and equipment money can buy, but I don't let him come up here where I live now and let him loose on my ranges. I gave him all the info on local ranges closer to him and told him I will go with him to help him out... 10 years of having all this equipment and he has not fired a single round out of any of them. High end scopes, expensive red dots on everything, thermals... but can't find the time to start at a 25 yard indoor range... but he wants to take his kid up here too. lol No Way.

If one of my other friends who I let shoot get hurt for some reason, it is likely that nothing is going to fall back on me... that is not 100% true though. I know lawyers that work for hospitals will be researching exactly who is going to pay them, especially when some injuries require multiple investigations. I even tell them to make sure their higher ups are ok with shooting in the woods with friend... but I don't make them produce a permission slip. lol

Anyone have a similar situation? I just don't see my land being necessary for someone to instruct their kids on my land and not in a much more controlled environment to start their experience. I'm all for assisting at the wildlife club and other ranges. Things can go wrong and why should I put everything on the line?
I am very particular about who I call a "friend". It is a very short list, but if you are on the list, you and your kids are welcome on my range.
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Old January 29, 2020, 07:10 PM   #15
reynolds357
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Originally Posted by zincwarrior View Post
Would looking at your TV engender an emergency tourniquet, and hospital trip?

The individual is worried an invitee will shoot themselves or others, and then sue him. This is a legitimate fear.
It might. I have seen more ambulances called to Big Game parties than to shooting ranges and shooting accidents combined.
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Old January 29, 2020, 08:32 PM   #16
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I hope you have really good liability insurance. Even though your friends are LEOs and Feds, you need to cover yourself and your family, your home, everything you have could be at risk from one accident. If your insurance broker/underwriter is aware that you have a gun range on your property and has put you on a good policy, you should be well protected. If not, well, you could be in financial water.

Your friends maybe professionals but all it takes is one lousy accident. A million dollar umbrella might not be enough but your insurance person can guide you to the right policy.

Not a lawyer or insurance agent just learned things from others' experiences.
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Old January 29, 2020, 08:40 PM   #17
Targa
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If I was fortunate enough to have enough land for a range I would let them shoot on it. If it were friends that have not shot before, even better but I would make sure I was with them for instruction..
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Old January 29, 2020, 08:44 PM   #18
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deleted

Last edited by Targa; January 29, 2020 at 08:56 PM.
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:23 PM   #19
American Man
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Originally Posted by dfwkid View Post
I hope you have really good liability insurance. Even though your friends are LEOs and Feds, you need to cover yourself and your family, your home, everything you have could be at risk from one accident. If your insurance broker/underwriter is aware that you have a gun range on your property and has put you on a good policy, you should be well protected. If not, well, you could be in financial water.

Your friends maybe professionals but all it takes is one lousy accident. A million dollar umbrella might not be enough but your insurance person can guide you to the right policy.

Not a lawyer or insurance agent just learned things from others' experiences.
This was always something that was bothering me. I was definitely looking at it the other way around.. as if I would be less liable. And because nothing has ever happened, I was able to not really worry about anything... which is how it goes I guess. All fun and games till someone loses an eye. I've also learned from other's mistakes like you have. It's not like I'm running a shoot house or anything but I find myself wanting to worry about less stuff these days.
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:31 PM   #20
American Man
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Originally Posted by Targa View Post
If I was fortunate enough to have enough land for a range I would let them shoot on it. If it were friends that have not shot before, even better but I would make sure I was with them for instruction..
I did extend the offer for a while. I've become less patient with excuses over the years. lol
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:33 PM   #21
rickyrick
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When I had a place I let friends shoot on my land... was a huge mistake.
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:34 PM   #22
American Man
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Originally Posted by reynolds357 View Post
It might. I have seen more ambulances called to Big Game parties than to shooting ranges and shooting accidents combined.
Aint that the truth!!
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:39 PM   #23
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When I lived in the country I let friends and their kids shoot on my property. I've let responsible kids I trusted shoot by themselves while the adults were inside.
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:40 PM   #24
American Man
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When I had a place I let friends shoot on my land... was a huge mistake.
Sorry to hear that. You don't have to expand on what happened if you don't want to. I get the point.
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Old January 29, 2020, 09:48 PM   #25
rickyrick
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Just trash, parties and people that weren’t given permission.
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