Legal Considerations for Volunteers. Written by Paul Ballard, Assistant Attorney General, Office of the Attorney General, Maryland. Scenario 1:. You are asked to drive a state vehicle to obtain medications for your patients. Outcome:.
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Legal Considerations for Volunteers
Written by Paul Ballard, Assistant Attorney General, Office of the Attorney General, Maryland
You take the car on a personal errand -- you would be acting OUTSIDE the scope of your publicduties. You would NOT be covered for any accident that might occur.
If you intended to hurt someone, you would NOT be covered by the State.
However, if you have insurance coverage on your own, the Attorney General’s Office may decline to represent you if the insurance coverage already provides you with defense counsel.
Not only is Paul Ballard a lawyer, but he’s also a professional juggler.
In these examples, Paul uses juggling scenarios to exemplify differences in legal terminology.
to be a volunteer juggler and
he is asked to juggle 3 balls.
Now what if Paul is juggling the 3 balls within the scope of his duty, but he does not care what mistakes he makes. Oops…he drops all 3 balls. Now what?
That’s fine, except that now Paul is OUTSIDE The Scope of Duties.
The Maryland Tort Claims Act does not provide for workers’ compensation. If you become ill or are injured due to the negligence of a State employee or volunteer, you may have a claim under the Maryland Tort Claims Act. But if no one was at fault, you may be without coverage. Therefore…(see next slide)
Therefore, it would be a good idea to check with your insurance company about making sure that you are covered in case you became ill or injured as a volunteer.
If you received a smallpox vaccination that was authorized under the Smallpox Emergency Personnel Protection Act of 2003 and become ill or injured, you would be eligible for compensation under that federal Act.
If you have any questions, please email them to the Board’s Emergency Preparedness Coordinator at [email protected]