States enact COVID-19 liability protections for businesses

States have started to pass laws to give businesses and health care providers protection against COVID-19-related lawsuits.

The goal of these laws is to block businesses from being sued by people who contract the coronavirus under certain circumstances and want to claim that a particular business is at fault. Business have been concerned about COVID-19 lawsuits and have been waiting for federal legislation to make them immune from suits brought by sick workers and customers.

As of late July, at least 12 states had enacted measures to limit liability for businesses. The growing list includes Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming.

Those laws vary from state to state, and might apply to suits brought against individuals, businesses and/or health care facilities.

Several states had passed laws that specifically protect certain health care facilities, including Arizona, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York.

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