COVID-19 Premises Liability Legislation Circulating in Wisconsin Legislature

Sen. Chris Kapenga (R-Delafield), Rep. Mark Born (R-Beaver Dam), and Rep. Dan Knodl (R-Germantown) are circulating legislation to shield Wisconsin businesses, schools, universities, and other entities from the threat of lawsuits alleging liability for COVID-19 exposures. Such protections would only apply to those who take adequate precautions to keep their premises safe. On September 9, […]

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Former Packer Brings Racial Discrimination Class Action Against NFL

Najeh Davenport, a former Green Bay Packers running back, and Kevin Henry, a former Pittsburgh Steeler, are the lead plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit alleging racial discrimination in concussion settlements paid out by the National Football League. The NFL had a 2014 settlement agreement with players that paid out players who had suffered head trauma. Specifically, […]

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Steinke v. Poppe (Duty to Report)

In Steinke v. Poppe (2019AP002028), the Wisconsin Court of Appeals held Poppe did not owe Steinke a duty to warn Steinke about the poor condition of his septic tank’s cover or to take other action to prevent him from falling through the cover into the tank. Facts Steinke hired Scott Poppe of Scott’s Septic Pumping, LLC (“Poppe”) […]

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Amazon Strictly Liable For Third Party Transactions On Website, California Court Rules

On August 13th, the California Court of Appeals ruled Amazon was strictly liable for injuries sustained by a customer who purchased a defective product on the “marketplace” portion of its site. The case arose after a woman purchased a laptop battery from a third-party seller on Amazon Marketplace. The battery exploded and burned the woman. Amazon claimed […]

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Justice Department Threatens Yale University With Lawsuit Over Racial Bias In Admissions Process

After two years of study, the Justice Department announced Thursday via letter that Yale University violated federal civil-rights law by making race and national origin the determinative factor in its admissions process. According to the government, Asian American and White applicants have a one-tenth to one-fourth chance of being admitted as similarly situated African American applicants. The […]

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WCJC Joins Support for Federal “SAFE TO WORK Act.”

On July 30th, the Wisconsin Civil Justice Council signed on in support with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce urging Congress to create COVID-19 liability protections for businesses and schools who comply with applicable government health and safety standards. You can read the full letter of support here. As the letter noted: “These crucial protections would safeguard […]

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COVID-19 Liability Update

Wisconsin Civil Justice Council and its partners continue to push for liability protections for Wisconsin businesses as they reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (See this column from WCJC President and National Federation for Independent Business Wisconsin State Director Bill G. Smith, which was featured on the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform blog and MacIver […]

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Leg Council Memo on Worker’s Compensation & COVID-19

Wisconsin Legislative Council recently released an issue paper overviewing employer liability for employees diagnosed with COVID-19 after returning to work. The paper explains that Wisconsin’s Worker’s Compensation Act provides that employee injuries sustained from an illness or infection are coverable by Worker’s Compensation, but employees must prove they became ill in the course of their […]

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U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform Poll: Bipartisan Majority of Americans Support COVID-19 Liability Protections

A bipartisan majority of Americans support protecting businesses from lawsuits related to coronavirus, according to a U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) poll released earlier this month. “The global pandemic has caused tremendous economic harm to our nation. As employers plan to reopen safely and sustainably, the last thing they need is to face […]

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Wisconsin Civil Justice Council, Business Coalition Call for Additional Liability Protections to Help Reopen and Restart the Wisconsin Economy

Wisconsin Civil Justice Council (WCJC) and a coalition of 40 Wisconsin businesses and chambers of commerce are calling for the Legislature to enact civil liability protections to help Wisconsin businesses as the state begins to reopen the economy. The Wall Street Journal recently editorialized calling for quick action, noting plaintiff attorneys are already targeting reopening […]

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