OLR Research Report

March 13, 2003




By: George Coppolo, Chief Attorney

is an action or omission, which amounts to an extreme departure from ordinary care, in a situation where a high degree of danger is apparent (Prosser on Torts, Degrees of Negligence). Such willful or wanton negligence must be more than mere thoughtlessness, inadvertence, or simple inattention.

The act preempts state laws to the extent they are inconsistent with it. It does not preempt state laws that provide additional protection from liability. But states can opt out of the law by passing an act explicitly doing so. Connecticut has not opted out. Thus, the law applies here.

Scope of Limitation on Liability

Under the act, no volunteer of a nonprofit organization or governmental entity can be liable for harm caused by his act or omission on its behalf if:

1. constitutes a crime or act of international terrorism as defined by federal law for which the volunteer has been convicted;

3. involves a sexual offense as defined by state law for which the volunteer has been convicted;

5. occurred when the volunteer was under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug.

GC: ts