Grants immunity from liability for personal injury and property damage sustained by a crime victim upon the premises of a business or nonprofit while seeking assistance, except in the case of gross negligence.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general obligations law, in relation to granting immunity from liability for personal injury, death or property damage incurred by a victim of a crime while seeking assistance upon the premises of a business entity or not-for-profit corporation
PURPOSE: This legislation puts businesses and not-for-profit corporations on the same footing as individuals who are encouraged by the law to act in good faith to help during an emergency. The bill incentivizes businesses and not-for-profit corporations to provide residents with easy access to a "safe haven" in which they can seek safety and/or assistance.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section one amends Section 9-103 of the general obligations law by adding a new section 2-a. The proposed legislation grants immunity from liability for personal injury and property damage sustained by a crime victim upon the premises of a business or not-for-profit corporation seeking assistance unless it is established that such injuries were or such death was caused by gross negligence on the part of such business or not-for-profit corporation.
Section two establishes that this law shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall have become law.
JUSTIFICATION: This legislation is designed to address an immediate and pressing legislative gap in the laws of New York state pertaining to the necessary public/private partnerships' and activities needed in the face of the growing risk of community emergency situations.
New York state "Good Samaritan" laws leave significant gaps of liability exposure for both business entities and not-for-profit corporations that are willing to assist in the response to an emergency situation.
Under state law, the current "Good Samaritan" liability protections only cover individuals acting in good faith to assist others. This gap can lead to hesitation or lack of coordination on the part of businesses and not-for-profit corporations providing assistance during an emergency.
This simple legislative step needs to be taken now to remove the disincentives against, and increase the motivation for, business and not-for-profit corporations stepping forward as "safe havens" in
order to develop the practical networks needed to protect the public.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: The sixtieth day after it shall have become law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ S. 6130 A. 8911 S E N A T E - A S S E M B L Y (PREFILED) January 4, 2012 ___________IN SENATE -- Introduced by Sens. GIANARIS, AVELLA, BRESLIN, MONTGOMERY, OPPENHEIMER, PERKINS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Judiciary IN ASSEMBLY -- Introduced by M. of A. SIMOTAS -- read once and referred to the Committee on Judiciary AN ACT to amend the general obligations law, in relation to granting immunity from liability for personal injury, death or property damage incurred by a victim of a crime while seeking assistance upon the premises of a business entity or not-for-profit corporation THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 9-103 of the general obligations law is amended by adding a new subdivision 2-a to read as follows: 2-A. AN OWNER, LESSEE OR OCCUPANT OF A PREMISES, WHICH IS OPERATED AS A BUSINESS ENTITY OR NOT-FOR-PROFIT CORPORATION, WHO PROVIDES ASSISTANCE TO A VICTIM OF A CRIME BY ALLOWING SUCH VICTIM TO REMAIN UPON SUCH PREM- ISES FOR THE PURPOSE OF SUMMONING A POLICE OFFICER AND/OR EMERGENCY MEDICAL PERSONNEL, SHALL ASSUME NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR OR INCUR LIABILITY FOR ANY PERSONAL INJURY, DEATH OR PROPERTY DAMAGE SUSTAINED BY THE CRIME VICTIM WHILE UPON SUCH PREMISES IN THE COURSE OF SEEKING ASSISTANCE, UNLESS IT IS ESTABLISHED THAT SUCH INJURY OR DEATH WAS CAUSED BY GROSS NEGLIGENCE ON THE PART OF SUCH BUSINESS ENTITY OR NOT-FOR-PROFIT CORPO- RATION. S 2. This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall have become a law.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD13704-02-2