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Daily Legislative Brief from April 23, 2014

Legal & Judicial

HB 685 – relating to Business Organizations
On Wednesday, April 23rd, HB 685, relating to Business Organizations, by Representative Patrick Rooney, Jr. (R-Palm Beach Gardens) and Representative Ritch Workman (R-Melbourne) unanimously passed the House chamber. The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration.

The bill amends the Florida Business Corporation Act to allow for the creation of two new forms of corporate enterprise: the social purpose corporation and the benefit corporation. These new entities will allow businesses to engage in societal benefit programs that may not involve or satisfy the traditional corporate norm of profit maximization. The new forms of corporation are similar, the primary difference being that a social purpose corporation has a specified social purpose or purposes designated in advance, whereas a benefit corporation is to create a general public benefit in a manner selected by management and assessed by a third-party standard.

AIF supports this legislation that will attract new businesses and entrepreneurs to the state of Florida. 

SB 1138 – relating to Civil Liability of Farmers
On Wednesday, April 23rd, SB 1138, relating to Civil Liability of Farmers, by Senator Greg Evers (R-Crestview) unanimously passed the Senate chamber. The bill now heads to the House for consideration.

The bill exempts a farmer from civil liability if he gratuitously allows a person to come onto his/her land to remove farm produce or crops at any time. Presently the exemption applies only when that activity takes place after harvesting.

AIF supports legislation that will reduce the number of frivolous lawsuits brought against Florida’s business owners.

SB 670 – relating to Nursing Home Litigation
On Wednesday, April 23rd, SB 670, relating to Nursing Home Litigation, by Senator John Thrasher (R-St. Augustine) passed the House chamber by a 109-7 vote. The bill now heads to the Governor for consideration.

This bill provides that the statutory cause of action is the exclusive remedy against a nursing home licensee, its management or consulting company, managing employees, and direct caregivers alleging direct or vicarious liability for the recovery of damages for the personal injury or death of a nursing home resident arising out of negligence or a violation of a resident’s statutory rights.

AIF supports the streamlining of litigation in order to preserve the growth of the nursing home industry while protecting our vulnerable elderly.