Governor signs S.147 bill, SC companies now immune by COVID-related lawsuits

South Carolina companies will now have immunity by Covid-19 lawsuits after Gov. Henry McMaster signed the South Carolina COVID-19 Liability Safe Harbor Act bill formally known as S.147.

Business leaders, members of the General Assembly and Gov. Henry McMaster all attended the ceremonial signing of the A pro-business bill. According to the bill, all businesses, state agencies, and healthcare facilities are provided with legal immunity.

“South Carolina’s businesses and medical professionals stood on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic adapting to ever-changing safety measures to protect their employees, customers, and community,” McMaster said. “As they protected us, it is now time we return the favor and protect them from frivolous lawsuits brought on by COVID-19. The COVID-19 Liability Safe Harbor Act carries on our rich tradition of common sense, pro-business legislation – which companies from around the world have come to recognize – bringing more jobs and investment to South Carolina.”

Companies and businesses can now feel safe with the granted Covid-19 lawsuit immunity. However, the Governor explained that this bill provides immunity to businesses and employers unless it is proven by clear and convincing evidence that the business caused an injury or damage from grossly negligent, reckless, willful, or intentional misconduct.

A medical provider will retain immunity unless it is proven by a preponderance of evidence that the provider caused an injury or damage from grossly negligent, reckless, willful, or intentional misconduct, a statement from the governor’s office said.

The bill provides immunity for businesses for the duration of the pandemic since its start on March 13, 2020, and it will end on December 3, 2021.

Governor McMaster urged the General Assembly in April to pass the bill as soon as possible without unnecessary delays.

Monica Doyle


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