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A New Call to Arms: Rewriting Second Amendment Threats

Posted by on April 13, 2022

The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), codified at 15 U.S.C. § 7901 et seq., has nearly banished the specter of civil liability for covered gun industry entities. PLCAA was predicated on the claim that gun industry actors, including firearm manufacturers and sellers, were under siege from baseless lawsuits founded on novel legal […]

Public Nuisance Liability and the Irrelevance of the Second Amendment

Posted by on April 12, 2022

1. Introduction In 2005, the U.S. Congress bestowed on gun makers and sellers broad immunity from civil lawsuits by enacting the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). Congress explicitly based this immunity on the need to protect Second Amendment rights, pitting defenders of those rights against victims of criminal gun violence seeking to […]

The Road to The Sandy Hook Settlement

Posted by on April 8, 2022

Over a recent five week period, $430 million was awarded to victims of gun violence in court cases:  a federal judge in Texas ordered the Air Force to pay $230 million to victims of the Sutherland Springs church shooting; the U.S. Department of Justice agreed to pay $127 million to victims of the Parkland High […]

Litigation Highlight: Smith & Wesson v. Attorney General of New Jersey

Posted by on March 16, 2022

Last Thursday, the Third Circuit partially vindicated Smith & Wesson in its ongoing battle with the New Jersey Attorney General. In Smith & Wesson v. Attorney General of New Jersey, the panel reversed the district court’s dismissal of Smith & Wesson’s lawsuit against the NJAG, which arises out of the AG’s administrative subpoena for business […]

Stronger than PLCAA: Civil Immunity for Unlawful Conduct

Posted by on March 4, 2022

The 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) is in the news lately, due in large part to the recent settlement between the now-bankrupt Remington Arms and the families of the Sandy Hook victims. I recently wrote about how I see that case as a turning point in gun litigation, with more potential […]

Privatizing the Gun Debate – Conference at Duke Law on March 18th

Posted by on February 16, 2022

We are very excited to announce that the Center will be hosting a conference at Duke Law School on Friday, March 18th on the theme Privatizing the Gun Debate. The conference will explore the ways in which private actors are increasingly taking on a major role in the gun debate. These actors participate not just […]

Government Faces Massive Civil Liability for Sutherland Springs Mass Shooting

Posted by on February 9, 2022

In a significant ruling on civil liability for gun-related fatalities, a federal trial court this past week ordered the federal government to pay more than $230 million to families and victims of the 2017 Sutherland Springs mass shooting. The survivors and their kin sued under the Federal Tort Claims Act, alleging that the Air Force’s […]

Gun Industry Tort Shields and DOJ’s Defense of Congressional Enactments

Posted by on October 27, 2021

In 2005, Congress passed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). That law provides fairly robust protection for most gun industry actors (e.g., manufacturers and dealers) when a firearm is used by a third party to cause harm. There’s a fair debate to be had about whether most of the lawsuits that PLCAA […]

PLCAA’s Constitutionality: Gustafson v. Springfield

Posted by on August 25, 2021

Yesterday, the Pennsylvania Superior Court sitting en banc heard oral arguments in Gustafson v. Springfield Inc., et al. This is a rehearing en banc in a case in which the original appellate panel became the first court (at least of which I am aware) to declare the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) […]

Scholarship Highlight: New Works on Firearms Law

Posted by on August 18, 2021

As we gear up for the Supreme Court’s hearing of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen in November, other firearms law and Second Amendment issues continue to be litigated in lower courts and debated in the literature. Here are new pieces that take on the issue of public carry (just recently posted to […]