Sacramento, CA (AHN) - In a 4-3 vote, the California Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that good Samaritans who unintentionally harm victims they tried to help are open for a lawsuit.
The decision, in effect, places in question the state's 1980 Health and Safety Code, which provides that, "No person who in good faith, and not for compensation, renders emergency care at the scene of an emergency shall be liable for any civil damages resulting from any act or omission."
The case arose from a lawsuit filed against cosmetician Lisa Torti by co-worker Alexandra Van Horn, who became a paraplegic as a result of a vehicular accident on Topanga Canyon Road in 2004. Van Horn alleged Torti contributed to her injuries by pulling her out of the car, which is a non-medical form of assistance.
Van Horn also sued the driver of the car she was riding, Anthony Glen Watson. When the driver and passengers of the second car where Torti was riding saw Watson's car crashed a light pole, it stopped and they rushed to help Watson's two passenger move out of the wreckage. Van Horn, in her deposition, said Torti grabbed her arm and pulled her out like a rag doll.
I guess we all just need to turn the corner if we see an accident in the distance. Rock on California.
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it seems as though Lisa (the good, oh, excuse me, sued samaritan) would have been sued either way. if she didn't help her friend the friend would have sued her for not helping. If the friend died the family would have sued her for not helping. people sue for the stupidest things and WIN!!! this is why there has to be warning labels on coffee, toys, shopping bags, everything. pretty soon there will have to be warning labels on warning labels, warning people that this is a warning label. it is frivilous lawsuits like these that make insurance rates so high. it is really sad that you have to protect people from themselves! i boiled a glass of water the other day to make tea. i took it out of the microwave put the tea bag in and let it sit for 2 mins. knowing that the tea was still boinilg hot, i took a sip any way. needless to say, i burned my mouth and tongue. should i sue the microwave company for allowing their microwave to heat water to a boiling point? Should i sue drilling company that drilled my well, allowing me to have water in the first place? Maybe Tetly, the tea company? How about my parents, for teaching me how to use the microwave or boil water? My husband perhaps, for allowing my dumb ass to make tea? this i the kind of logic some people use, which is sad.
but really, back to the point at hand. there is now legislation that encourages us not to help others. it is hard enough to get people to help in a non-dyre situation. so, what this legislation says to me is if you see an emergency leave, don't help, don't engage the victim in any way because YOU are now responsible for EVERYTHING. well my blood pressure just rose a few points, so, i guess i'll have to sue wranglerforum.com. and the person above me did not comfort me, so, i'll sue them too. and whoever posts below me i'll have to sue as well b/c they were too late. well, i'll see you all in court!!! (just kidding, please don't sue me over my comments)