the Legalese on the AED in New Hampshire


So this weekend I've embarked on a research project. During classes there are always questions about liability and Good Samaritan Laws. So after a little digging in the New Hampshire Revised Statutes Annotated I thought I'd share a new AED law every few days. So today's post is on (drum roll please) .....

CHAPTER 153-A
EMERGENCY MEDICAL AND TRAUMA SERVICES
Automated External Defibrillator

Section 153-A:31
153-A:31 Liability Limited. – Any person who, in good faith and without compensation, renders emergency care by the use of an automated external defibrillator shall not be liable for civil damages for any acts or omissions unless the acts or omissions were grossly negligent or willful and wanton. Any person, association, corporation or other organization that acquires and maintains an automated external defibrillator for emergency care shall not be liable for civil damages other than for gross negligence or willful and wanton acts or omissions. This section shall not limit civil liability protection provided by any other law.

Source. 2000, 302:4, eff. June 21, 2000. 2002, 156:5, eff. July 14, 2002.

So what does this mean? It means you can't be held liable for using an AED as long as you follow the directions and/or voice prompts on the machine. You cannot be held liable if your business or organization has AED's on location.

However you ARE liable if you have an AED and you don't use it when someone is in Cardiac Arrest. Or if you bought an AED for your business, but never had it checked regularly and when it was needed the batteries were dead, or the pads were expired.

There are a lot more laws on AED's. The gist on this one is please don't be afraid to use an AED when someone collapses and is not breathing. There is more legal risk to you if you don't use an AED when one is available.

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