Courts and Civil Procedure – Procedure Generally

Causes of Action

SECTION 9-1-31.1

§ 9-1-31.1. Members of public bodies – Exemption from liability.

(a) Definitions. The following words and terms shall have the following respective meanings, unless the context clearly indicates a different meaning:

(1) "Public body" means any branch, department, division, agency, commission, committee, board, council, bureau, authority, or any subdivision thereof of state government or any other public agency or public body corporate of the state of Rhode Island or any political subdivision thereof.

(2) "Qualified member" means an individual who serves without monetary or other compensation as a member of a public body for the purpose of setting policy, controlling, or otherwise overseeing the activities or functional responsibilities of the public body. As used in this section, "compensation" does not include a per diem or per meeting allowance, health insurance benefits, or reimbursement for out-of-pocket costs and expenses incurred in the service.

(b) Limitation of liability. Notwithstanding any other law, a qualified member of a public body shall not be held civilly liable for any breach of his or her duties as such member, provided that nothing herein contained shall eliminate or limit the liability of a qualified member:

(1) For acts or omissions not in good faith or which involve intentional misconduct or a knowing violation of law;

(2) For any transaction from which such member derived an improper personal benefit; or

(3) For any malicious, willful or wanton act.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1987, ch. 522, § 5.)