California: Gov. Newsom Signs Legislation Creating a Private Right of Action Against Firearm Industry Members

Gun Rights

On Monday, Governor Gavin Newsom signed another anti-gun bill into law, Assembly Bill 1594. Introduced by Assembly Member Phil Ting (D-19), AB 1594 creates a private right of action against firearm industry members for failure to implement “reasonable” controls. This intentionally vague term can subject the industry to crippling lawsuits regardless of whether there is any actual violation of law, and therefore prevent law-abiding citizens from being able to access the firearms necessary to exercise a constitutional right.

The firearm industry is already highly regulated through federal and state laws, with violations carrying stiff penalties. This is the latest salvo in gun control advocates’ long-running effort to circumvent the federal Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), which ensures Americans have reasonable access to firearms. The PLCAA does not prohibit lawsuits against the firearm industry for knowingly unlawful sales, for negligent entrustment, and on traditional products liability grounds.

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