Volunteers and Liability

Volunteers and Liability

A factsheet about the Federal Volunteer Protection Act

People who volunteer for a nonprofit or school may be concerned about a lawsuit if an injury occurs. This fact sheet provides an overview of legal protections designed to shield volunteers from liability.

Volunteers provide key services that help support health and fight chronic disease—leading kids in physical activity through Safe Routes to School programs and after-school activities, teaching cooking and gardening classes, and encouraging healthy lifestyles through many other programs. Volunteers often make it possible for financially stretched schools, nonprofits, cities, and counties to do more to create healthy communities and help children lead healthier lives.

People sometimes worry that they could be at risk of liability if an injury occurs while they are volunteering, but fortunately, a federal law—the Volunteer Protection Act—provides volunteers with significant protections from liability associated with volunteer activity

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