The Parable of the Good Samaritan tells a story of how a traveler comes to the aid of a man who is beaten, robbed and left for dead by his assailants. Two people pass over the victim before he is helped by the Good Samaritan. The story inspires us to help those who may be in dire need.
In Ontario, the Good Samaritan Act, 2001, S.O. 2001, c. 2, serves to protect individuals from legal liability when assisting others in need. There are several points that you should keep in mind should you ever find yourself in this situation.
For the Good Samaritan Act to apply, there are several criteria that must be satisfied:
First, the individual must assist voluntarily and without reasonable expectation of compensation or reward.
Second, the individual must be providing emergency first aid assistance at the immediate scene to a person who is “ill, injured or unconscious as a result of an accident or other emergency”.
Third, the Good Samaritan Act protects individuals from liability for damages that may result while they are providing first aid assistance—even if it the conduct was negligent. However, the individual can be sued for any damages caused by grossly negligent conduct. What amounts to grossly negligent conduct will depend heavily on the situation.
Generally speaking, the Good Samaritan Act is meant to confirm the idea that our law supports those who do the right thing.
If you or someone you know has been seriously injured, it is important that you contact an experienced personal injury lawyer right away. Oatley Vigmond helps injured people and the families of those killed due to negligence in their claim against insurance companies. Oatley Vigmond can be reached at 1-888-662-2481.