Indiana House Version Of COVID-19 Liability Bill Passed By Committee

Jan 26, 2021

The Indiana Statehouse.
Credit Lauren Chapman / IPB News

Indiana businesses and institutions are one step closer to being protected from COVID-19 lawsuits. A House committee passed the bill but some still worry the protections go too far.

Members of the House Judiciary Committee amended House Bill 1002 to try to limit protections to actions taken in response to the pandemic.

However, Ashley Hadler with the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association said the amended bill is still too broad. She wants language that only protects and gives immunity to claims related to exposure to injury due to COVID-19.

“This bill appears to be a solution in search of a problem,” said Hadler. “We have all of the mechanisms required under Indiana law to evaluate these claims currently. What we need in this bill is a tie to COVID-19. We do not have that here.”

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Hadler said the updated bill also goes too far in preventing claims against long-term care facilities on issues like staffing shortages. 

Rep. Ryan Hatfield (D-Evansville) motioned to keep the bill in committee but failed to get enough support. The bill passed out of committee 9-3.

Contact reporter Samantha at shorton@wfyi.org or follow her on Twitter at @SamHorton5.