Posted September 21, 2020
In response to frontline workers’ fears of legal repercussions in the face of COVID-19, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed a bill protecting frontline workers and individuals from lawsuits related to COVID-19 exposure.
House Bill 606 will protect the health care community, businesses, schools, and individuals from lawsuits related to the exposure or transmission of COVID-19 unless spread was caused by reckless or intentional misconduct.
The bill applies from March 2020 to September 30, 2021.
“The General Assembly is further aware that businesses and premises owners have not historically been required to keep members of the public from being exposed to airborne viruses, bacteria, and germs. In Ohio, it has been the responsibility of individuals going into public places to avoid exposure to individuals who are sick. The same is true today: those individuals who decide to go out into public places are responsible to take those steps they feel are necessary to avoid exposure to COVID-19, such as social distancing and wearing masks,” the bill explains.
In addition, the bill covers churches, nonprofits, nursing homes, as well as individuals who come into contact with one another at the personal property. For example, if two neighbors are talking to one another, transmitting the virus, the neighbor who became infected could in theory sue. However, under the bill, there is immunity from civil liability. Of course, if the neighbor infects another with the intent to infect, or acts negligently in the spread of COVID-19, then legal action can be taken.
This is not the first round of legislation the state of Ohio has promoted. In May, the following actions were taken to care for frontline workers during the pandemic:
- Pandemic Premium Pay for frontline workers: Ensures that essential workers working during the pandemic receive hazard pay.
- Small business assistance
- Housing assistance
- Funding for testing
While House Bill 606 is meant to protect those who worked to protect and serve others during the outbreak of COVID-19, it has made some Ohioans believe that they do not have rights if they have been victims of negligence.
The reality is, if you or someone you love was exposed to and later caught and become ill or have since died from COVID-19, you may be able to take legal action. You must be able to show that the actions taken by those involved were negligent, malicious, or intentional.
Remember, if you suffered illness and injury during the COVID-19 outbreaks, you are entitled to justice. But knowing who to trust is the first step.
COVID-19 Injury Lawyers
If you were exposed to COVID-19 resulting in illness, injury, or death, you do not have to stand for it. Contact our nationwide COVID-19 injury lawyers today. We will help determine what course of action is right for you and your family. Submit a free case review today.
Posted in COVID-19.