Jump to content

Volunteer Protection Act

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The federal Volunteer Protection Act of 1997 (the VPA or the Act)[1] aims to promote volunteerism by limiting, and in many cases completely eliminating, a volunteer's risk of tort liability when acting for nonprofit organizations or government entities. No volunteer of a nonprofit organization or governmental entity shall be liable for harm caused by an act or omission of the volunteer on behalf of the organization or entity. [2]


People who volunteer to assist nonprofit organizations or government agencies or programs run the risk that their actions, while well-intentioned, may cause harm to another. If those actions are deemed negligent, the volunteer may face civil liability for damages caused by the negligent conduct.[3]


  1. ^ The Act (S.543) was signed by President Clinton on 18 June 1997 and became effective ninety days thereafter. It was Pub. L. 105-19, 111 Stat. 221, and is codified at 42 U.S.C. 14501-05.
  2. ^ "Federal Volunteer Protection Act" (PDF).
  3. ^ See generally Prosser and Keeton on Torts, 5th Edition (West Group 1984) ISBN 0-314-09256-0 (Prosser & Keeton); Prosser, Wade, and Schwartz's Torts: Cases and Materials, 10th Edition (Foundation Press 2000) ISBN 1-56662-955-1 (Prosser & Wade); Restatement of the Law, Second, Torts 2d, Revised Edition (American Law Institute 1965)(Restatement); Harper, James and Gray on Torts, Third Edition (Aspen Publishers 1995)(Harper & James); Exploring Tort Law, M. Stuart Madden (Cambridge University Press, 2005) ISBN 0-521-85136-X.

External links[edit]