Advocacy is an important role for the Accredited Snow Contractor’s Association.
ASCA has been at the forefront of attempting to change legislation at both the state and federal levels to benefit snow and ice management contracts.
The Snow Removal Limited Liability or Liability Limitations Act is the ASCA’s model legislation that is in the process of being developed in multiple states.
The bill would make the hold harmless and indemnification agreements in snow and ice management contracts null and void when the property owner or property management company passes their liability onto the snow and ice management company.
Currently state and federal law, many snow and ice management companies are liable to lawsuits due to the indemnification and hold harmless clauses in their contracts.
For example, if the indemnification clause reads something to the effect of that the snow and ice management company will be responsible for any and all accidents, incidents and injuries on the property as relates to snow and ice, it is not very helpful if the scope of work with a clause like that and the contract reads that the company will not commence plowing until there is two inches on the ground and the property owner will tell you when to salt. In that scenario the contractor is liable for any slip and fall incidents even if there is one inch on the ground and they are not supposed to do their job.
On the state level, Illinois enacted ASCA’s model legislation in 2016, a version of it was approved in Colorado in 2018 and Connecticut signed it into law in July 2019.
There are active efforts in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania where the law is being reintroduced or introduced.
Contact your state representative and inform them how important the legislation is as a voter and business owner. To quote ASCA, “If you don't make your representatives aware of your concerns, they won't know to do anything about them.”
Reach out to ASCA Executive Director Kevin Gilbride to learn more about how you can benefit yourself and other snow removal operators in avoiding lawsuits today.