On Wednesday, August 5, 2020, Governor Brian Kemp signed into law S.B. 359, the Georgia COVID-19 Pandemic Business Safety Act. The Act limits the liability of businesses, churches, schools, individuals, healthcare facilities, childcare providers and healthcare providers (among others) for certain legal claims under Georgia law related to COVID-19.  Generally, the Act provides businesses protection from liability if an individual claims to have contracted COVID-19 while on the premises IF:

  1. They contracted COVID-19 prior to July 14, 2021,
  2. There is no gross negligence, willful and wanton misconduct, reckless infliction of harm, or intentional infliction of harm by the business AND
  3. The business
    1. posts a sign with specified language (see an example here)
      1. At a point of entry
      2. In the proper font (Arial - at least 1 “ tall)
      3. Not combined with any text other than the mandated language

Again, the sign is attached here – the font type, font size and wording IS crucial and should not be edited, change or modified.

In the alternative, a business may provide the following warning language printed on a receipt or proof of purchase for entry at the business in at least 10 pt Arial font (separate from any other text) stating:  Any person entering the premises waives all civil liability against this premises owner and operator for any injuries caused by the inherent risk associated with contracting COVID-19 at public gatherings, except for gross negligence, willful and wanton misconduct, reckless infliction of harm, or intentional infliction of harm, by the individual or entity of the premises.

The signage at the entry point of the premises is the quickest and easiest way to comply.  It is recommended that schools and childcare facilities post a sign at each point of entry.  Additionally, schools and childcare facilities should consider both posting signs at entry points and providing the printed notice on invoices for the school/childcare services as this would provide a stronger ability to prove compliance with the Act.  When posting the sign, it is recommended that you take a photo of the signage when posted then have it as part of your office manager’s daily checklist as evidence to confirm that it is posted each day as businesses need to be able to prove that it was posted on the date that the individual was at the business property.