Emergency Law Inventory | Full Law Text

Law Number

42 Pa.C.S.A. 8332.4(a)(1)

Summary Title

Liability: Volunteer


An individual who, without compensation, provides public service to a nonprofit organization or to a government agency will not be held legally responsible for acting or failing to act. They can be held legally responsible when their conduct falls below the generally practiced standards for such a situation or if their conduct was related to a recognized duty to another person and were aware of the substantial risk of harm.

Full Title

Volunteer-in-public-service Negligence Standard

Full Text

(a) Services covered. (1) Except as provided otherwise in this section, no person who, without compensation and as a volunteer, renders public services for a nonprofit organization under section 501(c)(3), (4) or (6) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (68A Stat. 3, 26 U.S.C. ยง 501(c)(3), (4) or (6)) or for a Commonwealth or local government agency conducting or sponsoring a public service program or project shall be liable to any person for any civil damages as a result of any acts or omissions in rendering such services unless the conduct of such person falls substantially below the standards generally practiced and accepted in like circumstances by similar persons rendering such services and unless it is shown that such person did an act or omitted the doing of an act which such person was under a recognized duty to another to do, knowing or having reason to know that such act or omission created a substantial risk of actual harm to the person or property of another. It shall be insufficient to impose liability to establish only that the conduct of such person fell below ordinary standards of care.