by Josh Amos

This month I get to go in a new direction compared to the topics I normally write about. With the great growth of the Armed Citizens' Legal Defense Network, it’s time for us to revisit a very important topic: attorneys. The mission of the Armed Citizens' Legal Defense Network is to pay attorneys to represent our members immediately after a self-defense situation. While Network members are always free to choose their own lawyer, not everyone knows one, so we have found it helpful to maintain an extensive network of affiliated attorneys across the United States.

Attorneys are like other professionals—they retire, get promotions (sometimes moving up to become judges!), go on sabbatical, and sometimes get so busy that they stop taking new clients. With that in mind, we are always seeking more attorneys with whom to affiliate. We are continuously on the look out for great “gun friendly” criminal defense attorneys who Network members can call after a self-defense situation. If you know of a great criminal defense attorney please let us know. We will eagerly follow up on your leads.

New Affiliated Attorneys

I’ve been busy recruiting new affiliated attorneys this month, and as a result, we have four new attorneys and they are in previously underserved areas, We are enthusiastically welcoming new affiliated attorneys in Redding, CA, Casper, WY, El Paso, TX (also licensed to practice in NM; can assist across the state line) and Fargo, ND. Network members in these states are encouraged to log in to the member only portions of to get the names and contact info for these new affiliates.

Have You Met With an Attorney?

A pillar of the Armed Citizens' Legal Defense Network member benefits is that the Network funds the attorney of your choice ASAP after a self-defense incident. Do you know yet whom you would ask us to pay on your behalf? Have you chosen the attorney that will be your next call right after you call 9-1-1? Have you sat down with them and discussed your post defense legal plan? This is a key part of your defense and it’s important to follow through.

You can choose to work with a Network Affiliated Attorney or one outside of the Network; we do not interfere in your choice. In either case, having an attorney selected and having met with her or him before needing legal help removes several steps from the timeline between your 9-1-1 call and having an attorney at your side.

Approaching Attorneys

For many personal reasons, dealing with an attorney often gives people pause. I recommend that no matter your personal feelings about attorneys, put your emotions on hold and do what needs to be done to prepare your defense.

Network President Marty Hayes wrote a great article on finding an attorney; let me highlight some pertinent advice:

  1. Call the law firm.
    1. After you have done some research you will be ready to make your call. When you do call you will probably not reach the attorney directly; you will likely speak with the attorney’s legal secretary, paralegal, or other members of their line staff. So…
    2. Introduce yourself and simply state, “My name is….”
      1. i. State you were referred and by whom; you might say, “I am a member of the Armed Citizens' Legal Defense Network and saw that [Attorney’s name] was listed as a Network Affiliated Attorney.”
      2. State why you are calling “I want to discuss with [Attorney’s name] if he/she will represent me in the event of a self defense incident. Is he/she taking new clients?” If not, ask for a referral. If so…
  2. Make an appointment to sit down with the attorney.
  3. Be prepared to pay them for their time. The Network does not pay for a consultation but it is worth the expense. Some attorneys won’t charge for a brief consultation and some will. In either case, offer up front to pay for their time: “How much would it cost for me to sit down with him and discuss how the firm would represent me after self defense?” Even if it is pricey, a pre-need consultation is a valuable investment in yourself and in your future. Furthermore, paying a consultation fee lets your prospective attorney know that you mean business.
  4. Prepare for your meeting. Re-read this article again and jot down some notes (
    1. Write down any questions you may have…this is a good time to get answers to questions you may have not been able to resolve on your own about gun laws and how self defense is treated by the criminal justice system in your area. In addition, I suggest the questions include:
      1. “How does an attorney work for the client who has had to defend himself/herself?”
      2. “If I call you at 2 a.m., will you come?”
      3. “What kinds of things would you do when you get there?” This is a polite way to ask, “When you get there, will you know what to do?” since the last thing we need to do is offend the man or woman we want defending us when we are in trouble!
      4. “What do you need me to do or not do?”
  5. Be prepared to hear things that you don’t want to hear. The legal system is considerably different from what you see on television. You don’t have to like the information your attorney has to share with you, but you do need to know it.

Introducing Your Attorney to the Network

Maybe you already know a great criminal defense attorney. If you do, you can certainly work with an attorney that is not currently affiliated with the Armed Citizens' Legal Defense Network and that is completely fine, because we fund the attorney of your choice. Sometimes explaining and educating your attorney about how the Network operates might be tough so please feel free to call me for assistance.

A Few Thoughts in Closing

This has been a busy article, but I feel there are some very important topics here. If nothing else…

  1. Make contact with an attorney;
  2. Be nice to the line staff;
  3. Come to an understanding with the attorney so you can call him or her after self defense.

Believe it or not, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed talking to attorneys these past few weeks. Really! Not all of the prospective Affiliated Attorney candidates that I contacted worked out. Some were not taking new clients; others were focused on very different aspects of the law – like gas and oil lease attorneys, but interestingly, even those who ultimately were not able to affiliate with us were able to make good suggestions about other attorneys they knew, and reaching out to the recommended lawyers netted us some new Affiliated Attorneys in areas where we’ve needed affiliates for a long time.

A warm “welcome aboard” goes out to all our new Affiliated Attorneys, and let me extend our Network members all the encouragement and support they need in making that important contact with an attorney before needing to call one at 2 a.m.

Finally, if you know an attorney, have heard the name of an attorney your CCW instructor recommends, or you read a recommendation for a gun-friendly criminal defense attorney on your local gun forum in the Internet, please share those recommendations with me! That will give me more attorneys to call up and invite to add their strength to the Network’s. We’ll all be the better for it. Please send your recommendations to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

To read more of this month's journal, please click here.