| Home > 107th Congressional Bills > H.R. 358 (ih) To authorize appropriations for the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] ...
H.R. 358 (ih) To authorize appropriations for the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] ...
108th CONGRESS 1st Session H. R. 357 To prohibit civil liability actions from being brought or continued against manufacturers, distributors, dealers, or importers of firearms or ammunition for damages resulting from the misuse of their products by others. _______________________________________________________________________ IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES January 27, 2003 Mr. Everett introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary _______________________________________________________________________ A BILL To prohibit civil liability actions from being brought or continued against manufacturers, distributors, dealers, or importers of firearms or ammunition for damages resulting from the misuse of their products by others. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the ``Firearms Heritage Protection Act of 2003''. SEC. 2. FINDINGS; PURPOSES. (a) Findings.--The Congress finds the following: (1) Citizens have a right, under the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, to keep and bear arms. (2) Lawsuits have been commenced against manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers of nondefective firearms, which seek money damages and other relief for the harm caused by the misuse of firearms by third parties, including criminals. (3) The manufacture, importation, possession, sale, and use of firearms and ammunition in the United States is heavily regulated by Federal, State, and local laws. Such Federal laws include the Gun Control Act of 1968, the National Firearms Act, and the Arms Export Control Act. (4) Businesses in the United States that are engaged in interstate and foreign commerce through the lawful design, marketing, distribution, manufacture, importation, or sale to the public of firearms or ammunition that have been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce are not, and should not be, liable for the harm caused by those who criminally or unlawfully misuse firearm products or ammunition products. (5) The possibility of imposing liability on an entire industry for harm that is the sole responsibility of others is an abuse of the legal system, erodes public confidence in our Nation's laws, threatens the diminution of a basic constitutional right, invites the disassembly and destabilization of other industries and economic sectors lawfully competing in America's free enterprise system, and constitutes an unreasonable burden on interstate and foreign commerce. (6) The liability actions commenced or contemplated by municipalities and cities are based on theories without foundation in hundreds of years of the common law and American jurisprudence. The possible sustaining of these actions by a maverick judicial officer would expand civil liability in a manner never contemplated by the Framers of the Constitution. The Congress further finds that such an expansion of liability would constitute a deprivation of the rights, privileges, and immunities guaranteed to a citizen of the United States under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. (b) Purposes.--The purposes of this Act are as follows: (1) To prohibit causes of action against manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers of firearms or ammunition products for the harm caused by the criminal or unlawful misuse of firearm products or ammunition products by others. (2) To preserve a citizen's access to a supply of firearms and ammunition for all lawful purposes, including hunting, self-defense, collecting, and competitive or recreational shooting. (3) To guarantee a citizen's rights, privileges, and immunities, as applied to the States, under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, pursuant to section five of that Amendment. SEC. 3. PROHIBITION ON BRINGING OF QUALIFIED CIVIL LIABILITY ACTIONS IN FEDERAL OR STATE COURT. (a) In General.--A qualified civil liability action may not be brought in any Federal or State court. (b) Dismissal of Pending Actions.--A qualified civil liability action that is pending on the date of the enactment of this Act shall be dismissed immediately by the court in which the action was brought. SEC. 4. DEFINITIONS. In this Act: (1) Manufacturer.--The term ``manufacturer'' means, with respect to a qualified product-- (A) a person who is engaged in a business to import, make, produce, create, or assemble a qualified product, and who designs or formulates, or has engaged another person to design or formulate, a qualified product; (B) a seller of a qualified product, but only with respect to an aspect of the product that is made or affected when the seller makes, produces, creates, or assembles and designs or formulates an aspect of the product made by another person; and (C) any seller of a qualified product who represents to a user of a qualified product that the seller is a manufacturer of the qualified product. (2) Person.--The term ``person'' means any individual, corporation, company, association, firm, partnership, society, joint stock company, or any other entity, including any governmental entity. (3) Qualified product.--The term ``qualified product'' means a firearm (as defined in section 921(a)(3) of title 18, United States Code) or ammunition (as defined in section 921(a)(17) of such title), or a component part of a firearm or ammunition, that has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce. (4) Qualified civil liability action.--The term ``qualified civil liability action'' means a civil action brought by any person against a manufacturer or seller of a qualified product, or a trade association, for damages resulting from the criminal or unlawful misuse of a qualified product by the person or a third party, but shall not include-- (A) an action brought against a transferor convicted under section 924(h) of title 18, United States Code, or a comparable or identical State felony law, by a party directly harmed by the conduct of which the transferee is so convicted; or (B) an action brought against a seller for negligent entrustment or negligence per se. (5) Seller.--The term ``seller'' means, with respect to a qualified product, a person who-- (A) in the course of a business conducted for that purpose sells, distributes, rents, leases, prepares, blends, packages, labels, or otherwise is involved in placing a qualified product in the stream of commerce; or (B) installs, repairs, refurbishes, reconditions, or maintains an aspect of a qualified product that is alleged to have resulted in damages. (6) State.--The term ``State'' includes each of the several States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any other territory or possession of the United States, and any political subdivision of any such place. (7) Trade association.--The term ``trade association'' means any association or business organization (whether or not incorporated under Federal or State law) 2 or more members of which are manufacturers or sellers of a qualified product. <all>
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