Florida Chamber campaign pushes for COVID-19 liability protections

The Florida Chamber of Commerce on Monday launched a campaign supporting legislation to protect businesses from COVID-19 liability lawsuits.

In a news release, the Florida Chamber said the struggling businesses could be pushed to closure if they’re “forced to defend themselves against a wave of frivolous lawsuits.”

The Chamber campaign asks Floridians to write their lawmakers and ask them to vote for the protections, which are outlined in House and Senate bills filed last week.

The House version, HB 7 by Republican Rep. Lawrence McClure, would shield businesses, schools, nonprofits and religious institutions who make a “good-faith effort” to follow government health guidelines. The protections would apply retroactively to a newly filed lawsuit if signed into law.

The Senate bill, SB 72 by Sen. Jeff Brandes, is similar but would require a COVID-19 related lawsuit to accompany a physician’s affidavit that claims the defendant caused the plaintiff’s injuries or damages.

The webpage for the Chamber campaign displays a form letter filled out with suggested text.

It reads, “I am writing to ask that you support HB 7, related to COVID-19 liability protections. Running a business has been difficult during the pandemic, and one of my top priorities

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