Legal Defense Fund – Review and Forecast
by Vincent Shuck
Now that we have celebrated another New Year for the Network and for ourselves, I offer a reminder of what the Legal Defense Fund has accomplished during the Network’s life, a review of where the money for this Fund comes from, and what will be happening in 2017 to enhance the Fund’s total. Some of this information may be old news to long term members, but please bear with me as I bring everyone up-to-date.
The Fund was created by the Network in order to have money, commonly called cash, to provide immediate financial assistance to a member for legal fees and bail support after a self-defense incident. It also funds expenditures for a trial, if required. The Network founders decided to provide the means to support members without any insurance-related contingencies.
We have faithfully put aside a percentage of all dues, all direct donations and all corporate support of services and products that generate income via our auction activities. This collective effort has prepared us well and members have benefited from the allocations and contributions. In fact, a dozen or so Network members have received direct financial support totaling over $110,000 during our span as a membership organization. Having available cash is functional.
The allocation of dues to the Legal Defense Fund is a rather silent, behind-the-scenes event. We simply take 25% of your initial or renewal dues and deposit that share into the Fund. That portion alone increased the Fund by almost $250,000 last year.
Donations are also deposited upon receipt. This past year, donations exceeded $10,000. Individual Network members send in a separate check or decide to “round up” a dues payment amount. Members like to say “thank you” to us for creating the Network and are glad to add the Legal Defense Fund to their annual giving program. Isn’t it nice to be a member and counted among those who support one of our freedom’s greatest offerings? Being a part of this Network feels good, doesn’t it!
The auction income is a little more involved but equally worthwhile. To obtain an item for the Network’s auction, we contact potential corporate sponsors and explain the Network’s mission of supporting the legally armed citizen. They respond by donating services or products that we can auction and then we deposit the income from the auctions into the Legal Defense Fund. Here is a list of the 2016 corporate sponsors:
- Black Hills Ammunition
- CorBon Ammunition
- Crimson Trace Corporation
- Galco Gunleather
- Ravelin Group Safety Equipment
- The Robar Companies, Incorporated
The auctions of donated items and services are posted on GunBroker.com. To become a bidder of one of our listed items, go to the GunBroker.com website and register. This gives you access to not only the Network’s listed items, but any of the items included in the extensive shooting and hunting fields. Of course, you are among all of the individuals with bidding privileges so you may be bidding against a fellow Network member or anyone else qualified to bid. But, bid what you want and hope for the best knowing the winning bid amount will go to the Legal Defense Fund. Except for custom made-to-order products, as a winning bidder you will receive the item promptly from the Network. Last year we sold a bunch of items and services provided by our corporate sponsors and earned about $4,000 for the Fund. We do not post an item every month, but watch for an alert about a posted item in the monthly announcement sent to you when a new eJournal is available.
What does all of this mean? We are about at the $1M mark in the Fund, thanks to the new members, renewing members, direct contributions and corporate support. That offers a nice cushion for use in assisting members after a self-defense incident.
2017 will offer us a chance to auction new items and services from our corporate sponsors on GunBroker.com and to allocate a portion of your dues to the Legal Defense Fund. It also gives you an option to consider the Fund in your giving calendar. If you can, send a check to our headquarters office or call in if you prefer to donate by credit card. Online donations are gratefully accepted as well, at https://armedcitizensnetwork.org/contribute. Either way, you can be a direct part of the Fund’s continued growth and then enjoy the fulfillment from the art of giving to a worthy cause.
Click here to return to January 2017 Journal to read more.