Creates the fair accountability in retail act.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general business law, in relation to creating the "fair accountability in retail act"
This bill amends the General Business Law to protect retailers from being included in product liability lawsuits if they are not liable. If they are found liable, they would be required to pay the percentage of the claim for which they were determined to be liable.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1: This act shall be known and may be cited as the "Fair Accountability in Retail Act".
Section 2: Amends the General Business Law to state that a retailer shall not be held liable for a product unless they are the manufacturer of the product, or participated in the product's design, assisted with the installation of the product, or altered the product. If a claimant proves negligence on any of the non-sale activities, the retailer's liability shall be limited to that portion of said negligence.
Section 3: Effective date.
This legislation would reform product liability litigation so that retailers are held accountable for their own liability. Under the current system, small retailers and innocent sellers are unfairly being swept into lawsuits and being asked to shoulder an unfair and unsustainable burden. A retailer that is included in a product liability lawsuit may be forced to pay the entire settlement, even if they are only found liable for a small portion of the claim. This legislation allows for fair accountability and liability and creates a level playing field where those that are found to be liable must pay, and those that are innocent gain relief.
None to the State
This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6510 IN SENATE January 31, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sen. LITTLE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Consumer Protection AN ACT to amend the general business law, in relation to creating the "fair accountability in retail act" THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "fair accountability in retail act". S 2. The general business law is amended by adding a new section 392-j to read as follows: S 392-J. FAIR ACCOUNTABILITY IN RETAIL. 1. NO SELLER OF ANY PRODUCT SHALL BE LIABLE FOR PERSONAL INJURY, MONETARY LOSS, OR DAMAGE TO PROPER- TY ARISING OUT OF AN ACCIDENT OR TRANSACTION INVOLVING SUCH PRODUCT, UNLESS THE CLAIMANT PROVES ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING NON-SALE ACTIV- ITIES BY THE SELLER: (A) THE SELLER WAS THE MANUFACTURER OF THE PRODUCT; (B) THE SELLER PARTICIPATED IN THE DESIGN OF THE PRODUCT; (C) THE SELLER PARTICIPATED IN THE INSTALLATION OF THE PRODUCT; OR (D) THE SELLER ALTERED, MODIFIED, OR EXPRESSLY WARRANTED THE PRODUCT IN A MANNER NOT AUTHORIZED BY THE MANUFACTURER. 2. IF THE CLAIMANT PROVES ONE OR MORE OF THE NON-SALE ACTIVITIES DESCRIBED IN SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION AND SUCH NON-SALE ACTIVITY WAS NEGLIGENT, THE SELLER'S LIABILITY SHALL BE LIMITED TO THE PERSONAL INJURY, MONETARY LOSS, OR DAMAGES TO PROPERTY DIRECTLY CAUSED BY SUCH NON-SALE ACTIVITY. 3. AS USED IN THIS SECTION: (A) "MANUFACTURER" SHALL MEAN A PERSON WHO IS LAWFULLY ENGAGED IN THE BUSINESS OF MANUFACTURING A PRODUCT IN INTERSTATE OR FOREIGN COMMERCE DURING SUCH PERSON'S REGULAR COURSE OF TRADE OR BUSINESS. (B) "PERSON" SHALL MEAN ANY INDIVIDUAL, CORPORATION, COMPANY, ASSOCI- ATION, FIRM, PARTNERSHIP, SOCIETY, JOINT STOCK COMPANY, OR ANY OTHER ENTITY, INCLUDING ANY GOVERNMENTAL ENTITY. (C) "SELLER" SHALL MEAN A PERSON WHO IS LAWFULLY ENGAGED IN THE BUSI- NESS OF MARKETING, DISTRIBUTING, ADVERTISING, OR SELLING A PRODUCT INEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD13204-01-3 S. 6510 2
INTERSTATE OR FOREIGN COMMERCE DURING SUCH PERSON'S REGULAR COURSE OF TRADE OR BUSINESS. S 3. This act shall take effect immediately.