COLUMBUS — State Rep. Jena Powell (R-Arcanum) today announced that legislation protecting healthcare providers, first responders, schools, small businesses and others from frivolous lawsuits stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic was signed into law.
“This is great news for Ohioans,” said Powell. “Our small businesses and workers have suffered enough, and this legislation gives Ohioans the comfort of knowing they will not be sued for simply doing their jobs.”
House Bill 606, also known as the “Good Samaritan Expansion Bill,” grants immunity to healthcare providers, schools, local governments, businesses and others from lawsuits stemming from the pandemic, unless those individuals or entities are reckless or engage in intentional misconduct. The legislation received extensive support from a wide range of trade associations, including the state’s largest associations representing large and small businesses, agriculture, public schools, local governments, hospitals and healthcare providers.
The bill is intended to provide peace of mind that Ohio’s healthcare workers, hospitals, schools, businesses and others are protected from unnecessary and costly lawsuits.
“My job is not done until every Ohioan can live in freedom,” added Powell. “It’s crucial we continue working on good policy to protect families, businesses, churches, non-profits, etc. and ensure that the balance of power is retained here in Ohio.”
The bill applies to acts, omissions, conduct, decisions, or compliance from the date of the Governor’s Executive Order, 2020-01D, issued on March 9, 2020, declaring a state of emergency due to COVID-19, through September 30, 2021.
Powell voted in favor of the legislation earlier this month.