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Emergency Law Inventory | Full Law Text

Law Number

Wis. Stat. 187.33

Summary Title

Liability: Catholic Church Volunteer

Summary

An uncompensated volunteer with the Roman Catholic Church will not be held legally responsible for acting or failing to act on behalf of the Church. They can be held legally responsible if acting with extreme carelessness or intent to cause harm. They can also be held legally responsible if committing a crime, if the individual is a director or officer of the Church and failed to act appropriately, if the individual causes injury, death, or damage to property while operating a vehicle, or if the individual has a license to perform a professional service, but does not perform the professional service adequately or at all.

Full Title

Limited liability of volunteers

Full Text

(1) DEFINITION. In this section, “volunteer” means an individual, other than an employee of the incorporated Roman Catholic church, who provides services to or on behalf of the incorporated Roman Catholic church without compensation. (2) IMMUNITY. Except as provided in sub. (3), a volunteer is not liable to any person for damages, settlements, fees, fines, penalties or other monetary liabilities arising from any act or omission as a volunteer, unless the person asserting liability proves that the act or omission constitutes any of the following: (a) A violation of criminal law, unless the volunteer had reasonable cause to believe his or her conduct was lawful or no reasonable cause to believe his or her conduct was unlawful. (b) Willful misconduct. (c) If the volunteer is a director or officer of the incorporated Roman Catholic church, an act or omission within the scope of the volunteers duties as a director or officer. (e) An act or omission for which the volunteer received compensation or anything of substantial value in lieu of compensation. (3) EXCEPTIONS. (a) Except as provided in par. (b), this section does not apply to any of the following: 1. A civil or criminal proceeding brought by or on behalf of any governmental unit, authority or agency. 2. A proceeding brought by any person for a violation of state or federal law where the proceeding is brought pursuant to an express private right of action created by state or federal statute. 3. Claims arising from the negligent operation of an automobile, truck, train, airplane or other vehicle by a volunteer. 4. A proceeding against a volunteer who is licensed, certified, permitted or registered under state law and which is based upon an act or omission within the scope of practice under the volunteers license, certificate, permit or registration. 5. Proceedings based upon a cause of action for which the volunteer is immune from liability under s. 146.31 (2) and (3), 146.37, 895.475, 895.48, 895.4802, 895.4803, 895.482, 895.51, or 895.52. (b) Paragraph (a) 1. and 2. does not apply to a proceeding brought by or on behalf of a governmental unit, authority or agency in its capacity as a contractor.