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Enact An Exemption To The Federal Law Shielding The Gun Industry From Accountability

  • In 2005, the US Congress passed The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) shielding gun manufacturers, dealers, and advertisers accused of dangerous or negligent business practices from legal liability.*
  • In an attempt to plug this gap, four states have passed laws that broaden opportunities for governments and citizens to hold gun makers accountable through civil lawsuits.
    • **In these states the gun industry can be held liable if they fail to prevent the sale or distribution of firearms to straw purchasers, gun traffickers, or people who are legally barred from owning firearms.
  • By enacting its own predicate exception to PLCAA, Minnesota could improve oversight of the local gun industry, by ensuring manufacturers and dealers face civil liability if they act recklessly or negligently.



*Van der Horst, K., Castellanos-Jankiewicz, L. (2022, September 8). Ensuring Access to Courts for Gun Victims: The Case for Repealing PLCAA. Just Security.

**Mangan, D., & Breuninger, K. (2021, April 8). Biden: If I could do one thing on guns, I would allow people to sue gun manufacturers. CNBC; CNBC. 

Kohrman, M. (2022, August 11). States May Have Found a Way Through the Gun Industry’s Liability Shield. The Trace.

Clukey, K. (2021, July 6). New York Enacts First-in-U.S. Law to Limit Gun-Liability Shield. Bloomberg Law.

Office of the Governor | Governor Murphy Signs Sweeping Gun Safety Package 3.0 to Continue the Fight Against Gun Violence. (2023).

Gun Industry Immunity in California. (2022, November 10). Giffords.

Governor Carney Signs Package of Gun Safety Legislation – State of Delaware News. (2022, June 30). State of Delaware News.



Duluth Roundtable

Please join Protect Minnesota later this month in Duluth for an important conversation. As we’re gearing up for the 2023 elections and the 2024 legislative session, it’s more important than ever that the gun violence prevention community has the chance to connect with each other, share our priorities, and voice our hopes for the coming months and years.

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