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A senate bill created to protect Indiana business, organizations, and individuals from coronavirus related lawsuits has passed its first committee.

Senate Bill 1 passed the Senate Committee on Judiciary by a vote of 8 to 3 on Wednesday.

An amendment was also added to the bill on Wednesday that would offer liability protections to manufacturers of personal protective equipment.

The bill is authored by State Senator Mark Messmer and would provide businesses, schools, churches, not-for-profit organizations from civil liability for damages if someone is exposed to COVID-19 on the property.

The bill would NOT protect individuals or employers if their actions constitute gross negligence or wanton misconduct.

Although there are no confirmed lawsuits in Indiana related to COVID-19 at this time, Messmer says the bill would act as a precautionary measure, ensuring no Hoosier businesses are overwhelmed and forced to cease operations by accusation. The bill will now be considered by the full senate.

 

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