Summary: S.4317 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.4317. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in Senate (07/27/2020)

Safeguarding America's Frontline Employees To Offer Work Opportunities Required to Kickstart the Economy Act or the SAFE TO WORK Act

This bill limits liability for injuries related to COVID-19 (i.e., coronavirus disease 2019).

Generally, an individual alleging harm from exposure to coronavirus or related medical treatment occurring before October 1, 2024, may sue only under the causes of action created by this bill, with limited exceptions. However, the bill does not preempt any law that imposes stricter limits on liability or otherwise provides greater protections to defendants.

An individual or entity engaged in business or other activities may be liable for injuries resulting from coronavirus exposure only if the plaintiff proves by clear and convincing evidence that (1) the defendant did not make reasonable efforts to comply with government standards and guidance, (2) the defendant's actions constitute gross negligence or willful misconduct, and (3) actual exposure caused the plaintiff's injury. (The clear and convincing evidence standard is a higher standard of proof than is typically required in a civil action.)

Similarly, a health care provider may be liable for injuries connected to coronavirus-related services only if the plaintiff proves by clear and convincing evidence that (1) the provider's actions constituted gross negligence or willful misconduct, and (2) such actions directly caused the injury.

The bill also contains various coronavirus-related protections for defendants, including protections that (1) exempt an employer or operator of public accommodations that meets certain requirements from liability under certain federal laws, (2) impose limitations on coronavirus-related class action lawsuits, and (3) limit liability for certain injuries related to workplace coronavirus testing.