A court in the United States has ruled that a would-be Good Samaritan accused of rendering her friend paraplegic by pulling her from a wrecked car can be sued.
The Supreme Court of California has declared that the state’s Good Samaritan law only protects people from liability if they are administering emergency medical care.
Justice Carlos Moreno ruled that a person is not obligated to come to someone’s aid. “If, however, a person elects to come to someone’s aid, he or she has a duty to exercise due care,” he wrote.
According to the lawsuit, on 1 November 2004 Alexandra Van Horn was in the front passenger seat of a car that crashed into a lamp post at 45 mph. Lisa Torti was a passenger in a car that was following Van Horn and stopped after the crash.
According to Torti she feared the wreckage was going to explode and she therefore pulled her friend out. Van Horn has testified that Torti pulled her out of the wreckage ‘like a rag doll’ and blamed her for her paralysis.
Torti argues that she should be protected from a lawsuit because she was giving ‘medical care’ when she pulled Van Horn from the car.
Link – Good Samaritan faces lawsuit