Governor Eric Holcomb has signed a bill providing protection against COVID-related lawsuits into law. Holcomb says Senate Enrolled Act 1 will help provide assurance for business owners and individuals “that they will not have to live and work in fear of frivolous lawsuits” due to the pandemic.
Senator Mark Messmer (R-Jasper), who authored the legislation, says it will provide businesses and individuals with immunity from civil liability if someone is exposed to COVID-19 on their property or during an activity they organized.
“The pandemic has affected Hoosier businesses, schools and others in ways no one could have foreseen just one year ago,” Holcomb said in a statement after signing the bill. “Most Hoosier businesses and other organizations are making good faith attempts to protect their customers and employees, because it is the right thing to do and it makes for better business in the long run. I want to thank lawmakers for rapidly passing this key piece of legislation and sending it to my desk for signature.”
The National Federal of Independent Business, Indiana’s small business organization, says the bill is important for small business liability reform.
“Liability protection is a big win for our struggling small business owners here in Indiana,” said Barbara Quandt, NFIB State Director in Indiana. “A big thanks to our governor and lawmakers for their recognition that protecting our small business owners during this critical time from the worry of getting slapped with a lawsuit will give them peace of mind as they continue to recover from this pandemic. Our small business owners are doing everything they can to keep their customers and employees safe while complying with state, local and federal laws. This is a great step not only to help small businesses, but help the state recover from this economic and health crisis.”
Holcomb signed Senate Enrolled Act 1 as well as one other piece of legislation Thursday. You can connect to more details on the 2021 Bill Watch webpage.