HB5110: COVID-19 virus; immunity from civil claims related to the transmission of or exposure to the virus.

HOUSE BILL NO. 5110

Offered August 21, 2020
A BILL to provide immunity from civil claims related to the transmission of or exposure to the COVID-19 virus and use of personal protective equipment; emergency.
Patron-- Ransone

Committee Referral Pending

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. § 1. A. For the purposes of this section, unless the context requires otherwise:

"Person" includes (i) individuals, corporations, nonprofit corporations, business trusts, estates, trusts, partnerships, limited liability companies, sole proprietorships, associations, and joint ventures; (ii) the Commonwealth or any locality, or any agent thereof, or any person acting on behalf of the Commonwealth or any locality; and (iii) any other legal or commercial entity.

"Personal protective equipment" means equipment worn to minimize exposure to the COVID-19 virus and includes gloves, medical masks, N-95 respirators, eye protection, gowns, aprons, boots or closed-toe work shoes, cleaning detergents, hand sanitizers, and cleaning products.

B. In the absence of gross negligence or willful misconduct, no person shall be liable for any civil cause of action arising from any act or omission alleged to have resulted in the contraction of or exposure to the COVID-19 virus, provided such person has substantially complied with applicable federal, state, and local laws, policies, procedures, and guidance regarding COVID-19.

C. In the absence of gross negligence or willful misconduct, no person who designs, manufactures, labels, or distributes any personal protective equipment in response to the COVID-19 virus shall be liable for any civil cause of action arising out of the use of such equipment.

D. The provisions of this section shall not limit or abrogate any other defenses or immunities available at law.

E. The provisions of this section shall not apply to claims before the Virginia Workers' Compensation Commission seeking benefits payable under the Virginia Workers' Compensation Act (§ 65.2-100 et seq.).

2. That an emergency exists and this act is in force from its passage.