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Some Thoughts on the Constitutionality of Good Samaritan Statutes

17 Pages Posted: 22 Jul 2010  

Barry Sullivan

Loyola University Chicago School of Law

Date Written: 1982

Abstract

Good Samaritan laws provide legal immunity to persons who assist in medical emergencies. Because good Samaritan laws eliminate the common law right of victims to secure redress for their injuries, these statutes raise certain constitutional questions.

This article begins by examining the vulnerability of good Samaritan statutes to federal constitutional attack on substantive due process and equal protection grounds. It then considers the susceptibility of such laws to state constitutional attack on the same grounds. The article concludes that while such statutes are not likely to violate federal substantive due process and equal protection provisions, they may be held unconstitutional on similar state grounds.

Keywords: Good Samaritan laws, emergency medical care, constitutional law

JEL Classification: K10, K13, K40

Suggested Citation

Sullivan, Barry, Some Thoughts on the Constitutionality of Good Samaritan Statutes (1982). American Journal of Law and Medicine, Vol. 8, 1982. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1646088

Barry Sullivan (Contact Author)

Loyola University Chicago School of Law ( email )

25 E. Pearson
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.luc.edu/law/faculty/sullivan.html

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