Louisiana has two statutes providing immunity to the firearms industry. The first statute precludes any political subdivision or local or other governmental authority of the state from bringing suit to recover against any firearms or ammunition manufacturer, trade association, or dealer for damages for injury, death, or loss or to seek other injunctive relief resulting from or relating to the lawful design, manufacture, marketing, or sale of firearms or ammunition. The authority to bring such actions “as may be authorized by law” is reserved exclusively to the state. However, the statute specifically states that it does not prohibit a political subdivision or local or other governing authority of the state from bringing an action for breach of contract as to firearms or ammunition purchased by the political subdivision or local authority of the state.1
The second statute declares that the Louisiana Products Liability Act was not designed to impose liability on a manufacturer or seller for the improper use of a properly designed and manufactured product, and that the manufacture and sale of firearms and ammunition by duly licensed manufacturers and dealers is a lawful activity that is not unreasonably dangerous.2 It also provides that no firearm manufacturer or seller shall be liable for:
- Any injury, damage, or death resulting from a shooting injury by any other person unless the claimant proves that such injury, damage, or death was proximately caused by the unreasonably dangerous construction or composition of the product;
- The actions of any person who uses a firearm in a manner which is unlawful, negligent, or otherwise inconsistent with the purposes for which it was intended, so long as the firearm was transferred in compliance with federal and state law; or
- Failing to warn users of the risk that:
A firearm has the potential to cause serious bodily injury, property damage, or death when discharged legally or illegally;
An unauthorized person could gain access to the firearm;
A cartridge may be in the chamber of the firearm; or
The firearm is capable of being fired even with the ammunition magazine removed.3
In addition, the failure of a manufacturer or seller to ensure that a firearm has a device which would: 1) make the firearm useable only by the lawful owner or authorized user of the firearm; 2) indicate to users that a cartridge is in the chamber of the firearm; or 3) prevent the firearm from firing if the ammunition magazine is removed, does not make the firearm unreasonably dangerous, unless such device is required by federal or state statute or regulation.4
For detailed information about government and private party lawsuits against the gun industry, the status of litigation involving gun industry immunity statutes in various states, or pending gun industry immunity legislation, visit the Brady Center’s Legal Action Project and the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence’s Gun Industry Immunity page.
See our Immunity Statutes / Manufacturer Litigation policy summary for further information.