senate Bill S1178A

Amended

Enacts the "Steven Kovacs Law" to impose an affirmative duty upon a host to render assistance to a guest on private premises in the event of a medical emergency

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 09 / Jan / 2013
    • REFERRED TO JUDICIARY
  • 04 / Jun / 2013
    • 1ST REPORT CAL.1013
  • 05 / Jun / 2013
    • 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • 10 / Jun / 2013
    • AMENDED 1178A
  • 10 / Jun / 2013
    • ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • 21 / Jun / 2013
    • COMMITTED TO RULES
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO JUDICIARY
  • 28 / Jan / 2014
    • 1ST REPORT CAL.78
  • 03 / Feb / 2014
    • 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • 04 / Feb / 2014
    • ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • 12 / Jun / 2014
    • AMENDED ON THIRD READING 1178B
  • 18 / Jun / 2014
    • SUBSTITUTED BY A3303B

Summary

Enacts the "Steven Kovacs Law" to impose an affirmative duty upon a social host to render assistance to a guest on private premises in the event of a medical emergency.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S1178
S1178A
S1178B
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Law Section:
General Obligations Law
Laws Affected:
Add Art 9 Title 2 ยง9-201, Gen Ob L
Versions Introduced in 2011-2012 Legislative Cycle:
S7560A

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S1178A

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general obligations law, in
relation to enacting the "Steven Kovacs Law" to impose an affirmative
duty upon a residential host to render assistance to a guest on
private premises in the event of a medical emergency

PURPOSE: This legislation will requires a host to notify emergency
responders when they have actual knowledge of a medical emergency of a
guest on the host's private premises.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section one cites the title of the as the "Steven Kovacs Law."

Section two defines a host as a person over eighteen years of age
having control over a private premises, and sets forth other relevant
definitions of guest and private premises. Furthermore the bill
imposes liability over a host, who is present and has actual knowledge
that a guest on their private premises is suffering or has suffered a
medical emergency, for failing to give reasonable assistance,
including notifying an emergency responder.

Section three sets the enacting date on the sixtieth day after it
shall have become a law.

JUSTIFICATION: Every year New Yorkers are seriously injured and many
die as the result of medical emergencies that go unreported to
emergency responders who could have rendered first-aid to those in
need of such assistance. One of the numerous cases that led to the
need for this legislation is an incident involving Steven Kovacs, a
young man who was left to die in a private residence following a
social gathering. Mr. Kovacs' serious medical state was known to the
person in charge or the premises and yet no emergency notification was
made that could have provided Kovacs with basic medical aid and
possibly saved his life.

Unfortunately, the lack of any obligation to notify emergency
responders of medical emergency once they become aware of such an
emergency results in countless avoidable deaths and serious injuries
which could have been Prevented had such a notification been
attempted. This act shall affirm as a matter of public policy, the
obligations of a residential host to simply notify emergency personnel
in order to provide the victim of such an emergency the best possible
chance of surviving, as one would expect any reasonable person to do.
The mere act of notification of emergency responders by the host or
any other person at the premises is a complete defense against any
claim for damages.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: S. 7650-A (2012)

FISCAL IMPACT: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after
becoming law.


view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 1178--A
    Cal. No. 1013

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 9, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. MARTINS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the  Committee  on  Judiciary  --  reported
  favorably  from  said  committee,  ordered to first and second report,
  amended on second report, ordered  to  a  third  reading,  and  to  be
  reprinted  as amended, retaining its place in the order of third read-
  ing

AN ACT to amend the general obligations law, in relation to enacting the
  "Steven Kovacs Law" to impose an affirmative duty upon  a  residential
  host  to render assistance to a guest on private premises in the event
  of a medical emergency

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  This  act  shall be known and may be cited as the "Steven
Kovacs Law".
  S 2. Article 9 of the general obligations law is amended by  adding  a
new title 2 to read as follows:
                                  TITLE 2
                       SOCIAL HOST RESPONSIBILITY
SECTION 9-201. SOCIAL HOST RESPONSIBILITY.
  S  9-201.  SOCIAL  HOST  RESPONSIBILITY.  1.  FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS
SECTION, THE FOLLOWING TERMS SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING MEANINGS:
  (A) "HOST" MEANS ANY PERSON OVER EIGHTEEN YEARS OF AGE HAVING  CONTROL
OVER A PRIVATE PREMISES.
  (B)  "CONTROL"  MEANS  THE  ACTUAL  AUTHORITY AND ABILITY TO REGULATE,
DIRECT OR DOMINATE THE PRIVATE PREMISES.
  (C) "PRIVATE PREMISES" MEANS ANY HOME, APARTMENT, CONDOMINIUM, COOPER-
ATIVE UNIT OR OTHER DWELLING UNIT OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING YARDS AND  OPEN
AREAS OVER WHICH THE HOST HAS CONTROL.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD05048-02-3

S. 1178--A                          2

  (D)  "GUEST"  MEANS  A PERSON WHO IS PHYSICALLY PRESENT ON THE PRIVATE
PREMISES OF A HOST, WHICH SHALL NOT BE DEEMED TO INCLUDE  PERSONS  TRES-
PASSING UPON THE PRIVATE PREMISES.
  2.  A HOST WHO IS PRESENT AND HAS ACTUAL KNOWLEDGE THAT A GUEST ON THE
PRIVATE PREMISES OVER WHICH THE HOST EXERCISES CONTROL IS  SUFFERING  OR
HAS  SUFFERED  A  MEDICAL  EMERGENCY  AND  WHO  FAILS TO GIVE REASONABLE
ASSISTANCE TO SUCH GUEST  SHALL  BE  LIABLE  FOR  DAMAGES  FOR  INJURIES
SUSTAINED BY SUCH GUEST OR FOR DAMAGES FOR THE DEATH OF SUCH GUEST WHICH
OCCURRED  BY  REASON  OF SUCH FAILURE. REASONABLE ASSISTANCE MAY INCLUDE
OBTAINING OR ATTEMPTING TO OBTAIN AID FROM LAW  ENFORCEMENT  OR  MEDICAL
PERSONNEL.
  3.  NOTWITHSTANDING  SUBDIVISION  TWO  OF THIS SECTION, ONCE A HOST OR
OTHER PERSON AT THE PRIVATE PREMISES HAS UNDERTAKEN TO RENDER REASONABLE
ASSISTANCE TO A GUEST, IT SHALL BE A COMPLETE DEFENSE AGAINST ANY  CLAIM
FOR  CIVIL  DAMAGES ALLEGEDLY CAUSED BY ACTS OR OMISSIONS OF SUCH PERSON
IN RENDERING SUCH ASSISTANCE, UNLESS IT IS ESTABLISHED THAT  SUCH  INJU-
RIES  OR  DEATH  WERE  CAUSED  BY  GROSS  NEGLIGENCE ON THE PART OF SUCH
PERSON.
  S 3. This act shall take effect on the sixtieth  day  after  it  shall
have become a law.

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