What Is Charitable Immunity in Texas?
In the 1980s, the Texas Legislature passed a bill that was signed into law by the governor to provide specific types of immunity to charitable organizations. This law was an attempt to limit liability exposure and rising insurance costs to nonprofit charitable organizations. Here, we want to briefly discuss charitable immunity in Texas, specifically what types of organizations this affects, as well as loopholes in this law.
What is Charitable Immunity and Liability in Texas?
The Charitable Immunity and Liability Act is a piece of special legislation passed by the Texas Legislature in 1987. This law is designed to provide some immunity to charitable organizations in the state of Texas. The goal was to limit the liability exposure and, thus, the insurance costs of charitable organizations.
The law applies to more than just the organizations themselves. The text of the legislation includes some liability immunity for directors and officers who manage organizations and volunteers and employees who work for charitable organizations in an attempt to encourage volunteer services within these organizations.
What Types of Organizations Does This Law Apply To?
Looking directly at the text of this law, we can see that the immunity includes “any organization listed as an exempt organization in section 501(c)(3) or 501 (c)(4) of the federal income tax statute.” This extends to organizations such as charities, religious groups, children and animal welfare organizations, etc. (This excludes private primary and secondary schools as well as alumni associations). Law also allows for the inclusion of organizations “organized and operated exclusively for promotion of social welfare by being primarily engaged in promoting the common good and general welfare of the people and the community.”
How Can Charitable Immunity Affect Your Injury Claim?
If you or somebody you care about has sustained an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual, you may be able to recover compensation for your losses. If the injury occurred due to the actions of a charitable organization or an employee or volunteer with a charitable organization, this could complicate the process of recovering compensation, but it does not mean you are out of luck completely. We encourage you to reach out to a skilled Laredo ersonal injury lawyer who has experience handling complicated injury claims throughout Texas. An attorney can examine the facts of your case and determine whether or not the Charitable Immunity and Liability Act in Texas applies.
A successful claim could help an injury victim recover compensation for their losses, including coverage of medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering damages, property damage expenses, and more.
We want to make it very clear that the Charitable Immunity and Liability Act does not shield charitable organizations from total liability for all injuries that occur on their premises or while a person is participating in their activities. An attorney needs to examine the claim before you make any decision about whether or not to file a claim. Please do not hesitate to file your claim as promptly as possible. The personal injury statute of limitations in Texas is two years from the date an injury occurs. Filing a claim beyond this time frame could result in a complete dismissal of the case.