JEFFERSON CITY — Small businesses in Missouri can rest easier welcoming customers back now that COVID-19 liability legislation sponsored by State Sen. Tony Luetkemeyer, R-Parkville, has been signed into law. The governor put his pen to Senate Bill 51 on Wednesday, enacting a comprehensive package of protections to shield frontline health care workers, first responders, churches, schools and small businesses from civil liability resulting from their efforts to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This legislation could not come at a better time,” Sen. Luetkemeyer said. “As reports of a new variation of COVID-19 give rise to renewed concerns about the pandemic, businesses and health care workers need assurances they won’t have to defend themselves from a rash of opportunistic lawsuits. The protections enacted through Senate Bill 51 will provide businesses the confidence to reopen, or remain open, so Missouri’s economy can continue to recover.”
Senator Luetkemeyer’s legislation includes provisions to protect small businesses and health care workers from lawsuits that threaten to put them out of business. Manufacturers, health care professionals and small businesses that act in good faith would not be subject to lawsuits resulting from exposure to COVID-19. The legislation also provides additional liability protection for schools and churches, ensuring these organizations will not be subject to civil action related to COVID-19 exposure.
Passage of pandemic liability legislation was identified as a top priority during the governor’s State of the State address in January, and Sen. Luetkemeyer’s bill received wide support from the state chamber of commerce and other business groups.
For more information about Sen. Luetkemeyer, visit www.senate.mo.gov/mem34.