Bill limiting COVID-19 liability passes House

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Bill limiting COVID-19 liability passes House

School districts and other entities across South Dakota will have protection against certain lawsuits related to COVID-19 based on a recent bill passed through the House.


Members of the House State Affairs committee passed House Bill 1046, which limits liability for certain exposures to COVID-19, on a 12-1 vote and the full House passed the bill by a 60-10 margin.


ASBSD supports the bill.


“Schools need your protection. We’ve been balancing on a high wire without a safety net,” ASBSD Executive Director Wade Pogany told committee members during his testimony in favor of the bill.


Pogany noted “several questions about liability have hovered over” schools but “they had to move forward” with getting kids back in school and HB 1046 will provide protection to districts.


HB 1046 includes school districts in the list of entities who are not liable for damages due to exposure to COVID-19 on their premises, unless an individual or the entity has intentional transmitted COVID-19.


ASBSD joined a number of other groups in support of the bill, including the South Dakota Retailers, South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and South Dakota Association of Healthcare Organizations among many others. The bill faced only three opponents.


HB 1046 now moves on to the Senate where it will have hearing in front of the Senate Judiciary committee and the full body, should it pass committee.


For updates on this bill and others, check the ASBSD Blog and Bill Tracker page.

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