What is the Good Samaritan Law?

Minnesota Statue 604A.01

Number one, I am not a lawyer and am not giving legal advice.  Please check out the Statue for more specific wording and information.

The Good Samaritan Law has two main parts.

The first one is the Duty to assist.  It states that if you know someone is in trouble from physical harm that you should give reasonable assistance.  Maybe the scene is unsafe and you only feel it is safe to call 911 and flee.  That could be considered reasonable.

The second one is the General immunity from liability.  This means that if you are a good Samaritan and you provide reasonable care that you will not endure any liability.  A great example that I like to use is if you move someone to a hard flat surface to begin CPR and they had fallen from a height and have potential head or neck injuries, you could cause more damage by moving them.  However, if you don’t move them and start CPR, they will die.  We can’t tell what is happening in the body and we always want to choose life when we have a choice.  Moving them was the right thing to do to begin CPR.

Don’t ever attempt skills that you are not professionally trained to do.  Don’t attempt medical procedures you have seen multiple times on your favorite medical shows.  This law is for good Samaritans helping within their appropriate scope of care.

Number one though, always make sure you don’t put yourself in an unsafe scene to help.   Some examples of unsafe scenes are roadways, house or building fires, active shooter, or poison exposure.  If the scene is not safe, you should call 911 and stay back.