June 28, 2017

FL. Stat. 768.28 Damage Caps Applicable To Florida Charter Schools

Earlier this month, Governor Rick Scott signed House Bill 7069 into law, a massive education bill that has garnered mixed reviews.  On Page 122 of the 274 page Bill (see the link below), it specifically states:  ” [f]or the purposes of tort liability, the charter school, including its governing body and employees, shall be governed by s. 768.28…”  Florida Statute 768.28 provides that, absent a claims bill, “[n]either the state nor its agencies or subdivisions shall be liable to pay a claim or a judgment by any one person which exceeds the sum of $200,000 or any claim or judgment, or portions thereof, which, when totaled with all other claims or judgments paid by the state or its agencies or subdivisions arising out of the same incident or occurrence, exceeds the sum of $300,000.”  This is significant legislation in the context of Florida tort liability.  Historically, there has been disagreement amongst respective courts as to whether the damage caps established pursuant to Florida Statute 768.28 are applicable to charter schools.  With the passage of House Bill 7069, it is now clear that the damage caps apply to Florida charter schools in the same manner as they apply to Florida public schools.  The new House Bill goes into effect on July 1, 2017.


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