After Idaho legislature tabled four bills limiting liability related to the pandemic, an attorney explains what “liability” means to an individual.
BOISE, Idaho – The Coronavirus Limited Immunity Act is one of three issues that Idaho Gov. Brad Little was allowed to discuss Idaho legislation at the ongoing special session.
The bill, now in the Idaho Senate, states that a person is “immune from civil liability for damage or injury resulting from an individual’s exposure to coronavirus”.
That is, if a person visits a restaurant or bar and can prove that the virus was passed on to them by an employee, the person cannot sue the owner of the facility.
“My basic idea with this bill is that you have no personal responsibility for your behavior, even if you acted irresponsibly,” said the personal injury attorney, Kurt Holzer. “Even if you’ve hurt someone through neglect, you can get away with it.”
Liability is difficult to prove in court, and granting immunity for transmission of COVID-19 is a violation of personal responsibility, according to Holzer.
“What [the bill] says you don’t have to pay attention to what you are doing, “he explained.” The right to a trial against a civil jury, enshrined in our constitution [and] in the Idaho Constitution – that kind of legislation to take away those rights. “
Liability means that a person is responsible for something like public health. Neglecting this responsibility can cause harm to another person. However, without civil liability, those who have overlooked these responsibilities cannot be punished.
“So I would rather talk about ‘What is the duty?’, ‘What are the duties?’ instead of ‘We don’t expect anything from you’, “said Holzer.
According to Holzer, Idaho’s laws are a balancing act between the “I, I, mine” mentality and the “We, we, our” mentality. However, he said this bill was wrongly aimed at the selfish view of the world and he would prefer lawmakers to discuss business owners’ obligations to their customers and public safety.