A coronavirus liability bill passed in the Alabama Legislature on Thursday.
The House passed Senate Bill 30 with an 86-4 vote.
Gov. Kay Ivey tweeted that she looks forward to signing it into law. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Arthur Orr.
Senate Bill 30 would protect businesses from having frivolous lawsuits slapped against them because of the pandemic.
We spoke to an Alabama attorney about the bill. He said it protects churches, businesses, government entities, health care providers and educational and cultural institutions from being sued civilly over coronavirus.
"There is some accountability. It's not a free pass if these businesses, schools, churches, if they are willful or intention or extremely reckless. If they violate the CDC guidelines for policy and procedures and Alabama Department of Public Health guidelines, then they do open themselves up for liability," said Attorney Tommy James.
James said when the pandemic started, some people approached him about various coronavirus-related lawsuits. He said even without this bill, those claims are hard to prove.
"They would be so hard anyway to prove where someone contracted it, where they were exposed to it, so they are really tough cases anyway," said James.
Senate Bill 30 is retroactive going back to March 13, 2020, so any lawsuit filed against a business about coronavirus since that date can be overturned by this bill if it becomes law.
I’m proud of the work of @SenatorAOrr & @RepFaulkner for working with their colleagues in the Alabama Legislature to pass SB 30, addressing #COVID19 liability protection. I look forward to signing this bill & the rest of the priority bills soon! #alpolitics pic.twitter.com/2mjbrhncAM
— Governor Kay Ivey (@GovernorKayIvey) February 11, 2021