House Bill No. 68
Introduced By mcgee
By Request of the Department of Corrections
A Bill for an Act entitled: "An Act abolishing governmental liability for NEGLIGENT tort damages to persons injured on the premises of a correctional institution while serving a sentence imposed upon conviction of a crime; PROVIDING A TEST FOR DECIDING A MOTION BY A DEFENDANT FOR DISMISSAL OR FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT IN A TORT SUIT; amending section
2-9-108, MCA; and providing an immediate effective date
and a retroactive applicability date."
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:
Section 1. Section 2-9-108, MCA, is amended to read:
"2-9-108. Limitation on governmental liability for damages in tort. (1)
Neither the The state, a county, municipality,
taxing district, nor or any other political subdivision of the state is not liable in tort action for damages suffered:
(a) as a result of an act or omission of an officer, agent, or employee of that entity in excess of $750,000 for each claim and $1.5 million for each occurrence; or
(b) by a person that accrued AS A RESULT OF NEGLIGENCE ON THE PART OF THE STATE OR A POLITICAL SUBDIVISION OF THE STATE while the person was confined in or was otherwise in or on the premises of a correctional or detention institution or facility to serve a sentence imposed upon conviction of a criminal offense, EXCEPT DAMAGES RESULTING FROM MEDICAL MALPRACTICE. THE IMMUNITY GRANTED BY THIS SUBSECTION (1)(B) DOES NOT EXTEND TO GROSS NEGLIGENCE, WILLFUL OR WANTON MISCONDUCT, OR AN INTENTIONAL TORT.
No An insurer is not liable for excess damages unless such the insurer specifically agrees by written endorsement to
provide coverage to the governmental agency involved in amounts in excess of a limitation stated in this section, in which
case the insurer may not claim the benefits of the limitation specifically waived."
NEW SECTION. SECTION 2. TORT SUIT BY PRISONER AGAINST STATE OR LOCAL GOVERNMENT -- TEST FOR DISMISSAL AND SUMMARY JUDGMENT. IF, ON A MOTION OF THE STATE OR POLITICAL SUBDIVISION UNDER RULE 12(B)(6), 12(C), OR 56(C), MONTANA RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE, THE JUDGE FINDS THAT WITH RESPECT TO A CLAIM AGAINST THE STATE OR ONE OF ITS POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS FOR TORT DAMAGES SUFFERED BY A CLAIMANT WHILE CONFINED OR OTHERWISE IN OR ON THE PREMISES OF A CORRECTIONAL OR DETENTION INSTITUTION TO SERVE A SENTENCE IMPOSED UPON CONVICTION OF A CRIMINAL OFFENSE, THERE IS NOT A SUFFICIENT BASIS IN THE LAW FOR A REASONABLE JURY TO FIND FOR THE CLAIMANT WITH RESPECT TO THAT CLAIM, THE MOTION MUST BE GRANTED.
NEW SECTION. Section 3. Severability. If a part of [this act] is invalid, all valid parts that are severable from the invalid part remain in effect. If a part of [this act] is invalid in one or more of its applications, the part remains in effect in all valid applications that are severable from the invalid applications.
NEW SECTION. Section 4. Two-thirds vote required. Because [section 1] abolishes governmental liability FOR NEGLIGENT TORTS, Article II, section 18, of the Montana constitution requires a vote of two-thirds of the members of each house of the legislature for passage.
NEW SECTION. Section 4. Retroactive Applicability. [This act] applies retroactively, within the meaning of 1-2-109,
to torts that occurred after January 1, 1990.
NEW SECTION. Section 5. Effective date. [This act] is effective on passage and approval.