The Van Wert County Courthouse

Friday, Jul. 10, 2020

House OKs Good Samaritan Expansion Bill

VW independent/submitted information

COLUMBUS — State Rep. Craig Riedel (R-Defiance) announced that House Bill 606, known as the Good Samaritan Expansion Bill, passed out of the Ohio House of Representatives this week. The legislation protects individuals, healthcare professionals, and businesses from unforeseen liability as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This bill gives Ohio businesses greater confidence by protecting them from costly and unnecessary civil suits,” said Rep. Riedel, a cosponsor of H.B. 606. “I’m grateful to support legislation that provides our healthcare workers and businesses with a sense of stability as we move our economy forward.”

The Good Samaritan Expansion Bill ensures civil immunity to the healthcare community, businesses, schools, nonprofits, and individuals from lawsuits arising out of the pandemic. Healthcare providers are immune for the actions, omissions, decisions, or compliance with government orders, unless it constitutes reckless disregard for life or health of the patient. 

Businesses, individuals, and families receive immunity for the transmission, contraction, or exposure to SARS, MERS, COVID-19, or any mutation unless they are reckless, participate in willful and wanton, or intentional misconduct.

The immunity is set to last from March 9, the date of the emergency declaration, through December 31.

A variety of organizations have voiced their support for the legislation, including the Ohio Healthcare Association, Ohio Council of Retail Merchants, Ohio Association of Civil Justice, Ohio Chamber of Commerce, Ohio Athletic Trainers Association, National Federation of Independent Business, Ohio Salon Association, Ohio Manufacturers Association, Ohio Hotel and Lodging Association, Ohio Automobile Dealers Association, Ohio Dental Association, Ohio Hospital Association, and many others.

H.B. 606 received a vote of 83-9 on the House floor. The bill now awaits further action in the Senate.

POSTED: 05/29/20 at 11:23 pm. FILED UNDER: News