Georgia tort reform – notice that hospitals not responsible for independent contractor professionals
Senate Bill 3 includes a provision that health care institutions are not liable for negligence of independent contractors when a sign to that effect is posted in the lobby, etc. On the surface this appears to be merely a codification of existing Georgia law. It has long been the law that hospitals are not responsible for the negligence of non-employee doctors practicing in the hospital. However, nurses, technicians, etc., generally have been hospital employees, for whose negligence the hospital could be held liable. It remains to be seen whether hospitals and nursing homes will begin to lease all nurses and other support personnel through other companies, and thus escape virtually all liability.
Lawyers who are still brave enough to take on the risk of handling malpractice claims after Senate Bill 3 may need to explore the possibility that some unseen employee leasing company may be an appropriate defendant.
Ken Shigley represents plaintiffs in wrongful death and catastrophic injury cases statewide in Georgia, and in other states subject to the multijurisdictional practice and pro hac vice rules in each state. Ken Shigley was designated as a “Super Lawyer” in Atlanta Magazine and one of the “Legal Elite” in Georgia Trend Magazine. He is President-Elect of the State Bar of Georgia (2011-12), a Certified Civil Trial Advocate of the National Board of Trial Advocacy, Chair of the Southeastern Motor Carrier Liability Institute and former chair of the Georgia Insurance Law Institute. He particularly focuses on cases arising from truck wrecks and accidents (tractor trailers truck wrecks, semi truck wrecks,18 wheeler truck wrecks, big rig truck wrecks, log truck wrecks, dump truck wrecks). He and Sally have been married since 1983, and are the proud parnts of two young adults, Anne Shigley and Ken Shigley, Jr.