Over a dozen states have passed legislation enacting coronavirus liability shields for businesses, but not Pennsylvania. Governor Tom Wolf vetoed H.B. 1737 at the end of November 2020.
What does this mean to you? Had H.B. 1737 passed, people who suffered coronavirus-related harm would have been limited in their ability to hold at-fault businesses accountable—unless they could prove gross and/or willful negligence by the business in question. This would have interfered with Pennsylvanians’ chance to seek financial damages in personal injury lawsuits against companies because they would have been held to a higher standard of proof in order to show fault.
Why Are States Looking to Shield Businesses from COVID-19 Liability?
By implementing a coronavirus liability shield, some states are hoping to encourage businesses to reopen. The pandemic has taken its toll on companies across the country. By protecting businesses from lawsuits from employees, customers, and vendors related to the coronavirus, H.B. 1737 and similar bills are meant to persuade wary businesses to open their doors.
Businesses need support right now. Our economy needs help. But this does not justify legislation that would make it more difficult for innocent people to get the compensation they deserve after suffering harm because a company failed to implement proper measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
How Coronavirus Liability Shields Affect You
Whether you’ve finally returned to work after lengthy closures, have been working through the pandemic, or have started partaking in normal activities again like eating at restaurants, you have the right to expect that your employer and the businesses you interact with are taking the appropriate steps to protect you from exposure to the coronavirus.
Thankfully, businesses in Pennsylvania are being held to the right standard when it comes to coronavirus liability. If you or someone you love contracted the virus because your employer or another company failed to implement social distancing guidelines or improperly sanitized, you could have grounds for a lawsuit that would allow you to recover monetary damages for your medical care, hospitalization, missed work, and possibly more.
At Handler, Henning & Rosenberg LLC, we believe in helping people who have been injured because of the recklessness and wrongdoing of others. This includes businesses and corporations that put profits ahead of the safety of their workers, their customers, and their communities. Pennsylvania’s stance on coronavirus liability shields for businesses should benefit the people we represent, and the injured need all the help they can get. We take on cases involving auto accidents, workplace injuries, catastrophic injuries, truck accidents, and many others.
Our attorneys will continue fighting for our clients through this pandemic, addressing the unique struggles presented by social distancing regulations and the virus itself. To find out more about how we can help you, give us a call at (888) 498-3023. Your consultation is free and private.