2005 Regular Session
To: Judiciary, Division A
By: Senator(s) Hewes, Michel, Gollott, Lee (35th), Ross, Albritton, Pickering, Morgan, White, Flowers, Brown, Nunnelee
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 95-9-1, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO SPECIFICALLY INCLUDE THE DONATION OF FOOD TO SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS FOR THE NEEDY IN THE TORT LIABILITY EXEMPTION FOR VOLUNTEER CHARITABLE ACTIVITY; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 95-9-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
95-9-1. (1) For the purposes of this section, unless the context otherwise requires:
(a) "Qualified volunteer" means any person who freely provides services, food, goods or the use of real or personal property or equipment, without any compensation or charge to any volunteer agency in connection with a volunteer activity. For purposes of this chapter, reimbursement of actual expenses, including travel expenses, necessarily incurred in the discharge of a member's duties, insurance coverage and workers' compensation coverage of volunteers, shall not be considered monetary compensation.
(b) "Volunteer agency" means any department, institution, community volunteer organization, food service organization for the needy or any nonprofit corporation designated 501(c)(3) by the United States Internal Revenue Service, except an agency established primarily for the recreational benefit of its stockholders or members. Volunteer agency shall also include any volunteer fire fighter association which is eligible to be designated as a nonprofit corporation under 501(c)(3) by the United States Internal Revenue Service.
(c) "Volunteer activity" means any activity within the scope of any project, program or other activity regularly sponsored by a volunteer agency with the intent to effect a charitable purpose, or other public benefit, including, but not limited to, fire protection, rescue services, the enhancement of the cultural, civic, religious, educational, scientific or economic resources of the community or equine activity as provided in Section 95-11-1 et seq.
(2) A qualified volunteer shall not be held vicariously liable for the negligence of another in connection with or as a consequence of his volunteer activities.
(3) A qualified volunteer who renders assistance to a participant in, or a recipient, consumer or user of the services or benefits of, a volunteer activity shall not be liable for any civil damages for any personal injury or property damage caused to a person as a result of any acts or omissions committed in good faith except:
(a) Where the qualified volunteer engages in acts or omissions which are intentional, willful, wanton, reckless or grossly negligent; or
(b) Where the qualified volunteer negligently operates a motor vehicle, aircraft, boat or other powered mode of conveyance.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2005.