Arkansas Trucking Association

You are here: Home News In Brief ATA applauds Governor's executive orders to protect businesses, health care workers and employees

ATA applauds Governor's executive orders to protect businesses, health care workers and employees

The Arkansas Trucking Association today commended Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson for three Executive Orders that will provide business liability protection for Arkansas employers, medical immunity for health care workers, and workers’ compensation coverage for employees during the COVID-19 emergency.

The business liability executive order will allow businesses and their employees to be immune from civil lawsuits as a result of exposure to COVID-19. Immunity does not apply to willful, reckless or intentional, which means business owners will need to substantially comply with public health directives in order to be eligible for the liability protection.

The medical immunity executive order will authorize health care workers and providers to use crisis standards of care to treat COVID-19 patients. Health care providers as emergency workers are immune from civil liability. Immunity does not extend to reckless conduct.

The workers compensation executive order assures workers compensation coverage for employees who may be infected in the workplace. COVID-19 is considered an occupational disease and will be an exception to prohibition on compensation. There must be a causal connection between employment and the disease.

All three executive orders are effective throughout the duration of the public health emergency.

Gov. Hutchinson said the executive orders were initiated by the General Assembly and supported by leadership the Arkansas delegation, who wanted to create protections for employers and employees without calling a special session, since large gatherings can further the spread of the virus.

“We are in uncharted territories. Never have we ever had a Gov. shut down hundreds of businesses by executive order due to a pandemic. Many businesses are afraid to open back up," Sen. Jim Hendren said during the press conference.

"There is no blanket immunity for bad actors There must be a good-faith effort to provide safe workplaces. Anybody who gets COVID19 at work deserves to have those costs taken care of,” he continued.

ATA President Shannon Newton said the protections in the Governor’s orders will protect business owners acting in good faith allowing them to remain open, retain their employees and serve their customers without the added threat of civil lawsuits. “The pandemic has introduced so much uncertainty into the lives and businesses of the people in our state. I am thankful Gov. Hutchinson recognized these risks and found a way to provide some liability defense for employers during the emergency.”

Contact Us

Arkansas Trucking Association
PO Box 3476 (72203)
1401 West Capitol Ave.
Little Rock, AR 72201

(501) 372-3462 | Phone
(501) 376-1810 | Fax

Our Mission

  • PROTECT the collective interests of trucking companies in the political and regulatory arenas.
  • PROMOTE the dynamics of trucking so that people have a better understanding of the link between America's primary freight delivery system and the standard of living they enjoy.
  • SERVE our members to help them to grow their business and their profits
You are here: Home News In Brief ATA applauds Governor's executive orders to protect businesses, health care workers and employees