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15 Mar 2019

Chris Dolmetsch, Erik Larson & Polly Mosendz, Bloomberg

USA: Connecticut Supreme Court says lawsuit by families of Sandy Hook victims against gun manufacturer Remington can go ahead

"Gun Industry Dealt Blow as Court Says Sandy Hook Parents Can Sue Remington", 14 Mar 2019

The gun industry suffered a stinging setback as Connecticut’s top court said families of victims of the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre could move ahead with their lawsuit against Remington Arms Co. over its marketing of military-style Bushmaster weapons.

In a first-of-its-kind decision, the state Supreme Court said the families could sue for "wrongful" marketing under a state unfair-trade-practice law. The court, reinstating a suit dismissed by a trial judge in 2016, adopted the families’ novel way around a federal law that protects the gun industry from liability...

"While all this decision does is allow a case to go forward, in broader terms it really opens up a new avenue for holding gunmakers responsible." [declared Adam Winkler, a UCLA Law School professor]

The company had argued that the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, or PLCAA, bars lawsuits holding gun companies responsible for crimes committed with their products.

Remington declined to comment...

The split decision, with three of seven justices in dissent, isn’t a final victory for the Sandy Hook families, as the case now goes back to the lower court for further proceedings and a possible trial. It wasn’t immediately clear whether Remington will ask the state court to reconsider or appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court...