Senate passes Huffman Bill protecting essential businesses


COLUMBUS— The Senate passed legislation Wednesday morning, sponsored by State Senator Matt Huffman, R-Lima, providing immunity from liability for small businesses, certain healthcare providers and other essential employers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through Senate Bill 308, essential employers will receive legal protections in lawsuits when an individual alleges they were exposed to COVID-19 on the business’ premises.

“It has not been business as usual in Ohio and business owners and employees understand this well,” said Huffman. “Senate Bill 308 encourages employers to open their doors, confidently hire back employees, and permit customers to enter safely.”

As these businesses in Ohio reopen, this legislation ensures that while proper safeguards are in place to help protect employees, safeguards are also in place for the employer.

Unless the entity acts with reckless, intentional, willful, or wanton conduct to spread the virus, this bill will prevent expensive and unnecessary litigation against businesses.

“Our government should not stand in the way of business and I hope that as we recover, and we will recover, that Ohio’s businesses, families and communities return stronger than ever,” said Huffman.

Senate Bill 308 will now be sent to the Ohio House for further consideration.