During the past several months, New Orleans, Chicago, Miami-Dade County, Atlanta, Bridgeport, Conn., and a half dozen California cities have filed suit claiming gun companies are legally responsible for the harm caused by their product. These suits seek to recoup public expenses incurred in treating gunshot victims. Most of the lawsuits claim the gun industry is negligent for not including more safety features. Other suits charge gun makers have been lax in their distribution policies, making it too easy for minors and criminals to acquire guns.
Lawmakers passed a bill that shields gunmakers from mistargeted blame. Texas cities, counties and hospital districts are blocked from suing gun makers for the costs associated with gun violence.
The state Attorney General may file a suit on behalf of the state or any other governmental unit. Otherwise, governmental entities must obtain legislative permission to file suit.
Cities and counties may still file suit for defective equipment and any resulting injury or death. Plus, individuals are not prevented from filing a product liability suit against a gun maker or dealer.