Precious Seguin was injured while she, her father, her brother, and a friend were tracking a wounded deer at night, and her father’s Remington 710 bolt-action rifle accidentally discharged, injuring her. Before trial, the parties stipulated to uncontested facts and filed cross-motions for summary judgment. Specifically, the parties stipulated that the Louisiana Products Liability Act exclusively governs Seguin’s claims; that Remington is a “Firearm Manufacturer” under Section 60 of the LPLA; that Seguin is a “Claimant” under Section 53(4) of the LPLA; and that Seguin’s only products liability claim was for a design defect under Section 56. The District Court found that Section 60(B) did not preclude the design defect claim, and awarded the plaintiff $500,000.
On appeal, the U.S. Fifth Circuit attempted to certify the question to the Louisiana Supreme Court. 22 F.4th 492 (5th Cir. 2022). But the Louisiana Supreme Court rejected the case. No.2022-0037 (La. 3/22/2022), 334 So.3d 752.
Left to its own devices, the U.S. Fifth Circuit found that La. R.S. §9:2800.60(B) – i.e. “No firearm manufacturer or seller shall be liable for any injury, damage, or death resulting from any shooting injury by any other person unless the claimant proves and shows that such injury, damage, or death was proximately caused by the unreasonably dangerous construction or composition of the product as provided in R.S. 9:2800.55” – precludes a claim that the firearm was unreasonably dangerous in design (La. R.S. §9:2800.56).
Seguin v. Remington Arms Co., 31 F.4th 311 (5th Cir. 2022).