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LAJ summary of selected bills and effective dates
2016 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature

LAJ staff compiled this summary of selected bills enacted during the 2016 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature. Resources used include legislative instruments found on the website of the Louisiana Legislature and digests prepared by legislative staff. This does not include the hundreds of bills not passed.

For access to all legislative instruments from the 2016 Regular Session, go to http://www.legis.la.gov. Texts of acts and legislative history, including archived internet broadcasts of committee and floor action, are also available on that website.

Art. 3, Sect. 19 of the Louisiana Constitution specifies that the effective date of an act of the regular session shall be August 1 of the calendar year in which the session was held, unless the instrument itself specifies a different effective date.

You should see the act for any specific language concerning proposed prospective or retroactive application. If no such language exists, courts will perform retroactivity analysis under Civil Code Art. 6 and R.S. 1:2.

Please forward corrections, comments, questions, or other concerns to Tom Wright at LAJ by phone at 225-242-4837 or by email at twright@lafj.org.

Quick links:

     Practice and procedure
     Immunity
     Health and health insurance
     Proposed constitutional amendments    



Practice and procedure

Medical review panels. Changes the commencement of the period within which to pay the filing fee from 45 days from the date of mailing the confirmation to 45 days from the date of receipt of the confirmation by the claimant. (Amends R.S. 40:1231.8(A)(1)(c) and (5) and 1237.2(A)(1)(c) and (5)) HB 195 Jenkins. Act 275. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Law Institute. Revisions to extend the time delays for responding to discovery requests, to provide for the enforcement of foreign and domestic judgments, to provide for commencement of the suspensive appeal delay from an order of seizure and sale, to provide with respect to the notice of seizure of property, and to provide for an award of attorney fees in civil contempt of court proceedings. (Amends C.C.P. arts. 1458, 1462(B)(1), 1465.1(B), 1467(A), 2541, 2642, and 2721(B), and R.S. 13:3852(B); adds R.S. 13:4611(1)(g)) HB 285 Garofalo. Act 132. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Law Institute. Revises the Trust Code by expanding the definition of “person” to include a limited liability company, to provide for the treatment of interest upon death of the principal beneficiary, to provide for shifting interest in principal, to provide for recordation of instruments and the content of an extract of trust. HB 286 Garofalo. Act 544. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Law Institute. Expropriation. Requires additional disclosures of information to property owners by expropriating authorities, other than the state or its political subdivisions, prior to making an offer to acquire an interest in property. (Amends R.S. 19:2.2(B) and (C); adds R.S. 19:2.2(D)) HB 313 Garofalo. Act 108. Effective Jan. 1, 2017

Fax filing. Removes the requirement that the filing is complete after the clerk of court transmits a receipt. Requires clerk to transmit confirmation receipt with filing fee no later than first business day after receiving fax. Provides that the facsimile filing shall have the same force and effect as filing the original document if the filing party subsequently files the identical original documents within seven days and pays the required fees. (Amends R.S. 13:850(A), (B), and (C) and 2562.25(A), (B), and (C) and C.Cr.P. Art. 14.1(A), (B), and (C)) HB 331 Miller. Act 109. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Evidence. Specifies that the rules of admissibility of evidence relative to the conduct and behavior of the victim of certain sexually related crimes are applicable in both civil and criminal proceedings. (Amends C.E. arts. 404(A) and 412.1; adds C.E. art. 412(G)) HB 398 Moreno. Act 357. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Medical Records. Provides that a patient, his legal representative, and certain other persons shall have a right to obtain a copy of the entirety of the medical records in the form in which they exist. If records exist in paper form, paper or digital copies shall be provided upon payment of the existing copying charge. If records exist in digital format in the health-care provider’s electronic health record, copies shall be provided in digital format if they are requested in digital format and charged as provided, but also specifies that the maximum $100 charge only applies to copies stored in digital format; excludes postage charges from the $100 and $200 maximum charges; and provides that if the treatment records exist in both digital form and paper form, the maximum limit of $100 shall only apply to the portion of records that exist in digital form. (Amends R.S. 40:1165.1(A)(2)(b)(i) and (ii)) HB 537 Garofalo. Act 627. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Prescription. Extends the two-year prescriptive period to three years for a delictual action against a person for sexual assault. (Amends C.C. art. 3493.10; adds C.C. art. 3496.2) HB 556 Moreno. Act 629. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Law Institute. Updates the Business Corporation Act and incorporates revisions to the Model Business Corporations Act as enacted in 2014. HB 714 Foil. Act 442. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Unauthorized practice of law. Allows an aggrieved party, attorney general, Louisiana State Bar Association, or any district attorney to file a petition to enjoin an actor from engaging in the unauthorized practice of law and authorizes any aggrieved party to sue an actor who is engaging in or has engaged in the unauthorized practice of law for general damages, special damages, and all other damages suffered by the aggrieved party and award of costs and attorney’s fees to the petitioner. Provides a prescriptive period of one year from the date of the unauthorized practice of law or its discovery. Requires that an action be filed no later than three years from the date of the act constituting the unauthorized practice of law. (Adds R.S. 37:213.1) SB 203 Ward. Act 204. Effective Aug. 1, 2016



Immunity

Certificate of employability. Requires a judge presiding over a reentry division of court to issue a temporary certificate of employability to an offender in the reentry program and a permanent certificate of employability to an offender who successfully completed his sentence. Provides that a temporary certificate shall be deemed null and void if the offender fails to complete his sentence and that a certificate of employability is void if the offender is convicted of any felony offense subsequent to the issuance of the certificate of employability. Further provides that an employer, general contractor, premises owner, or other third party shall not be subject to a cause of action for negligent hiring of or failing to adequately supervise an offender certified to be employed solely because that employee or independent contractor was previously convicted of a criminal offense, and shall not affect the vicarious liability of the employer. (Adds R.S. 23:291.1) HB 145 Moreno. Act 538. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Offender on probation. Immunity for any mentor of an offender on probation under the supervision of drug, mental health, veterans, or reentry court divisions. Limits liability for injury or loss caused or suffered by an offender that arises out of the performance of his duties as a mentor. Limits liability for the court and any officer, agent, or employee of the court for any injury or loss to the offender, the mentor, or any third party for the actions of the mentor or the offender. Specifies that the immunity shall not affect vicarious liability of the employer or the ability of an employee to file a claim for workers’ compensation. (Adds C.Cr.P. art. 895(O)) HB 146 Moreno. Act 655. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Limits liability for a parent, tutor, or curator of a student with developmental disabilities when the school developed and implemented a behavioral intervention plan as part of an Individualized Education Program pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004, and when the care, custody, and control of the student was relinquished to the school. Does not apply if the negligence of the parent, tutor, or curator caused the injury. Further, only applies to actions for damages sustained by an employee of the school that developed and implemented the plan and where the injury sustained was caused by a violation of the plan by an employee of the school. (Adds R.S. 9:2800.23) HB 862 Falconer. Act 226. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Right To Try Act. Expands the immunity in the Right To Try Act to include manufacturers of investigational drugs, biological products, or devices prescribed to eligible terminally ill patients; and for any person or entity involved in the care of such patients. (Amends R.S. 40:1169.5) HB 232 Stokes. Act 355. Effective Aug. 1, 2016

Louisiana Family Caregiver Act. Requires hospitals to give a patient the opportunity to identify a caregiver. Further, prior to the patient’s discharge, hospital must make a reasonable effort to consult and educate the designated caregiver along with the patient to accomplish aftercare tasks. Provides that the patient does not have a cause of action against the hospital, hospital employee, duly authorized agent of the hospital, or any consultants or contractors of the hospital for negligence of the uncompensated caregiver. (Adds R.S. 40:1226.1-1226.7) SB 376 Colomb. Act 351. Effective Aug. 1, 2016


Health and health Insurance

Study medical malpractice cap. Requests the Senate Committee on Health and Welfare and the Senate Committee on Judiciary A to jointly study, receive testimony, and make recommendations regarding present Louisiana laws concerning medical malpractice caps and surcharges. Requires report to the legislature not later than 60 days prior to the 2017 Regular Session. SR 12 Gatti. (Second Special Session)

Telemedicine

Allows physicians who practice telemedicine upon patients in licensed health-care facilities to prescribe controlled substances without necessity of conducting an appropriate in-person patient history or physical examination. (Amends R.S. 37:1271(B)(2) and (3); adds R.S. 37:1271.1) HB 480 Jackson. Act 252. Effective May 26, 2016

Repeals requirement for telemedicine physician to maintain an office in Louisiana. Allows physicians to utilize interactive audio without video in cases in which, after review of the patient’s medical records, the physician or other healthcare provider determines that he is able to meet the same standard of  care as if the care was provided in person. Venue is proper in the district court for the parish in which the patient resides or in the district court for the parish where the patient was physically located during the telemedicine encounter; stipulating that the patient is considered physically located at the originating site as defined in R.S. 40:1223.3. (Amends R.S. 37:1271(B)(2)(b) and (4) and R.S. 40:1223.3(5) and 1223.4(A); adds R.S. 37:1271(B)(6) and R.S. 40:1223.5) HB 570 Schroder. Act 630. Effective June 17, 2016

Adds licensed dietitian or nutritionist to the list of health-care providers who may use telehealth technology. (Amends R.S. 40:1223.3(3))  HB 595 Johnson. Act 417. Effective Aug. 1, 2016


Prescriptions

Allows patients access to physical therapists without a physician prescription or referral if the physical therapist has either a doctorate in physical therapy or five years of licensed clinical practice experience. Prohibits a physical therapist from rendering a medical diagnosis of a disease. (Amends R.S. 37:2418(B) and (C), 2420(B) and (C)) SB 291 Mills. Act 396. Effective June 6, 2016

Allows naloxone to be dispensed without a prescription to combat opioid overdoses. Authorizes any person to lawfully possess naloxone or another opioid antagonist. (Amends R.S. 40:978.2(C)(1) and (D)-(F); adds R.S. 40:978.2(G) and (H)) HB 1007 Moreno. Act 370. Effective June 5, 2016


Other actions

Changes the name of the Department of Health and Hospitals to the Louisiana Department of Health and re-creates the department and the statutory entities within the department. (Amends R.S. 36:251(A), (B), and (C)(1); adds R.S. 49:191(9)(b); repeals R.S. 49:191(6)(d)) SB 107 Barrow. Act 300. Effective June 30, 2016

Requires background checks on all health-care employees. (Amends R.S. 40:1203.1(3)(a), (c), (g), and (o), (4), and (5), 1203.2(B)(1) and (E), and 2009.2(1); adds R.S. 15:587(A)(1)(i) and R.S. 40:1203.1(3)(d), (i), (j), and (p)-(y) and 1203.2(F)) HB 680 Moreno. Act 311. Effective June 2, 2016



Proposed constitutional amendments

Constitutional amendments are proposed by joint resolution. They require a two-thirds vote of each chamber and voter ratification, but do not require the governor’s signature. (La. Const., Art. III, §§17 and 18, Art. IV, §5 and Art. XIII, §1). Statewide election to be held on November 8, 2016.

Eliminates the deductibility of federal income taxes paid when computing state corporate income taxes. (Amends Const. Art. VII, §4(A)) HB 31 Leger (First Special Session) Act 31. Effective date: See act.

Provides that the manner of appointment for the registrar of voters is as provided by law and requires the qualifications of the registrar to be provided by law. (Amends Const. Art. XI, §5) HB 459 Danahay Act 677. Effective date: See act.

Establishes an exemption for ad valorem taxes due in 2017 and thereafter for the total assessed value of the property for the unmarried surviving spouse of a member of the armed forces of the United States, the Louisiana National Guard, the Louisiana State Police, or a law enforcement or fire protection officer killed in the line of duty. (Adds Const. Art. VII, §21(M)) HB 505 M. Johnson Act 678. Effective Dec. 1, 2016

Creates the Revenue Stabilization Trust Fund as a special treasury trust fund, deposits into the fund mineral revenues and corporate tax revenues, and dedicates other mineral revenue to repayment of the UAL. (Adds Article VII, §10(F)(4)(h), 10.15, and 10.16) HB 603 Leger Act 679. Effective date: See act.

Authorizes the post-secondary education management boards to establish tuition and fee amounts charged by the institutions under their supervision and management without legislative approval. (Adds Const. Art. VIII, §7.2) SB 80 Morrish Act 680. Effective date: See act.

Revises the circumstances that would allow the reduction of constitutionally protected expenditures and dedications to eliminate a projected deficit in an ensuing fiscal year. (Amends Const. Art. VII, Sec. 10(F)(2)(b) and (4)(h), (i), (j), (k), and (l)) SB 201 Allain Act 681. Effective date: See act.

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