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LAJ summary of selected bills and effective dates
2019 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature


LAJ staff compiled this summary of selected bills enacted during the 2019 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature. Resources used include legislative instruments found on the website of the Louisiana Legislature and digests and summaries prepared by legislative staff.

For access to all legislative instruments from the 2019 Regular Session, go to 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.


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Motor vehicle/traffic/transportation
Seatbelts. Increases the weight limit for vehicles required to have safety belts from 10,000 pounds to 26,000 pounds. (Amends R.S. 32:295.1(A)(1), (3), and (B)) HB 181 Brass. Act 208. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Child safety seats. Updates passenger safety laws for the proper restraint and seating of children up to eighteen years old according to industry standards. (Amends R.S. 32:295(A)) SB 76 Tarver. Act 51. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Alcoholic beverage delivery. Authorizes the commissioner of alcohol and tobacco control to issue permits for the delivery of low-alcohol-content beverages by restaurants, grocery stores, package houses, and third parties. Delivery must include a food order. Defines a third-party-delivery company as one that is licensed to do business in Louisiana, permitted with the Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control, and uses its own W-2 employees for delivery. Requires third-party-delivery services to maintain general liability insurance with a liquor-liability endorsement in the amount of no less than $1 million per occurrence. (Amends R.S. 26:271.2(2) and 274(A); adds R.S. 26:271.2(1)(j), 271.4, and 309) HB 349 Carmody. Act 433. Effective: See act.

Alcoholic beverages delivery. Permits the delivery of high- and low-content alcoholic beverages by a liquor retailer with a Class B permit or a permit that allows the retailer to sell alcoholic beverages for off-premises consumption. Permittee may market, receive, and process orders for alcohol products using electronic means owned, operated, and maintained by a third party. Defines third party as an independent technology company that operates a website or consumer application upon which independent liquor retailers market their products. Provides that third-party companies shall not deal, handle, sell, offer for sale, or possess for sale alcoholic beverages or process payments for the sale of alcoholic beverages. The relationship between the permittee and the third party is one of independent contractors, and neither party shall be deemed the employee, agent, or joint venturer of the other party under any circumstances or for any purposes. (Amends R.S. 26:2(7)-(26) and 241(5)-(19); adds R.S. 26:(27)-(30), 153, 241(20)-(24), and 307) HB 508 Leopold. Act 436. Effective: See act.

Transportation network company (TNC) Uber/Lyft bill. Establishes statewide regulatory framework to be overseen by the Department of Transportation and Development for TNC, vehicles, and drivers. Establishes a classification of carriers, specifically provides that a TNC or driver is not a common carrier, contract carrier, or motor carrier; and exempts driver from having to register the vehicle as a commercial motor vehicle or a for-hire vehicle. Prohibits the resolution of a dispute arising in this state involving the TNC or a driver from being governed by the laws of another jurisdiction and from being resolved outside of the state unless agreed upon by all parties in writing after the dispute arises. Specifies that the term “dispute” includes, but is not limited to, a dispute involving liability arising from an alleged act or omission; a dispute involving interpretation of contractual terms or provisions; and a determination of rights, status, or other legal relations. Requires TNC to maintain an agent for service of process in Louisiana. (Amends R.S. 45:201.6(G)(2); adds R.S. 48:2191-2205) HB 575 Magee. Act 286. Effective July 1, 2019

Autonomous commercial motor vehicles. Establishes a regulatory framework for driverless vehicles on Louisiana’s highways. Defines “commercial motor vehicle” as a motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used in commerce to transport passengers or property if the motor vehicle has a gross combination weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds inclusive of a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds. Department of Transportation and Development has jurisdiction over autonomous commercial motor vehicles and automated driving systems and will be required to establish application requirements and other rules. Requires not less than $2 million of motor vehicle liability coverage. Specifies that all choice of law conflicts with respect to bodily injury or property damage claims must be resolved in accordance with Louisiana law. (Adds R.S. 32:400.1-400.8) HB 455 Landry. Act 232. Effective Aug. 1, 2019  

Repair shops. Increases penalties for insurance companies that violate rules against requiring claimants to use a particular place or shop for motor vehicle service or glass window repair. (Amends R.S. 22:1892(D)) HB 411 Landry. Act 317. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Requests the Louisiana State Law Institute to study the Model Vulnerable Road User Law to determine its applicability in Louisiana. HCR 46 Thomas

Requests the Louisiana State Law Institute to form a study group to recommend legislation providing penalties for causing injury or death to pedestrians and bicyclists while operating a motor vehicle. HCR 47 Edmonds

Authorizes commissioner of the Office of Motor Vehicles to waive any penalty, procedure, or requirement if the motor vehicle liability security expired or was cancelled when the motor vehicle’s principal driver was the registered owner or owner’s spouse or child who was in the hospital or died and the registered owner presents proof of such exceptional circumstance. (Adds R.S. 32:861.2) SB 3 Mizell. Act 173. Effective June 11, 2019

Scooters. Authorizes electric low-speed scooters to operate on sidewalks, bicycle paths, and highways, except when DOTD or any parish or municipal governing authority, or both, prohibit scooter operation in the interest of safety. Requires passing vehicles to leave a safe distance of not less than three feet. (Adds R.S. 32:300.1.1) SB 91 Cortez. Act 258. Effective July 1, 2019

Adds police and other public safety officers to those allowed to stand on public roadways for the purpose of soliciting contributions on behalf of charitable organizations. Immunity for local, municipal, or parish authority with jurisdiction over the roadway. (Amends R.S. 32:218) SB 129 Colomb. Act 123. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Drug testing. Expands the requirement for post-accident drug testing to cases where a collision causes “suspected serious injury” and not only when a fatality occurs. Exempts the law enforcement officer and agency employing the law enforcement officer from civil or criminal liability for any related action or omission. (Amends R.S. 32:681) SB 138. Gatti. Act 408. Effective: June 20, 2019

High-occupancy vehicle lanes. Authorizes the secretary of DOTD or his designee to designate a high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane on any highway in the state highway system where adequate shoulders exist and may restrict the use to vehicular traffic classified as HOV. (Adds R.S. 48:345) SB 84 Erdey. Act 81. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

LA Wallet. Authorizes the digitization of any credential required by the state. Requires that a digitized credential viewed through the application in the electronic wallet is as valid as a tangible credential. Permission to view a digitized credential does not qualify as permission to search the mobile device or otherwise access additional data. (Adds R.S. 39:17.1-17.5) HB 378 James. Act 220. Effective June 11, 2019



Insurance
Public adjuster fraud. Creates the crime of unauthorized practice of public adjusting. Defines certain acts committed by licensed public adjusters as fraudulent insurance acts. (Amends R.S. 22:1924(A)(1); adds R.S. 22:1693(F) and (G), and 1923(2)(o)) SB 103 Smith. Act 83. Effective July 1, 2019

Enacts the Louisiana Structured Settlement Protection Act. (Adds R.S. 9:2713-2713.9; repeals R.S. 9:2715) SB 193 Morrish. Act 260. Effective July 1, 2020

Homeowners insurance. Adds a requirement that each policy contain a disclosure that making improvements or modifications to the property may reduce the cost of the policy’s premium. (Adds R.S. 22:1332(B)(8)) SB 197 Bishop. Act 194. Effective: See act.

Requires each auto insurance company to submit information regarding commercial motor vehicles to the commissioner each year by May 1 for the prior calendar year beginning in 2020. Requires the commissioner to aggregate and publish the information by ZIP code and parish on the department’s website and to post a general description of the rate-making methodology used for commercial motor vehicles. Provisions sunset May 1, 2025. (Amends R.S. 44:4.1(B)(11) and 4.1(B)(11) as amended by Acts 2018, No. 371, § 2; adds R.S. 22:1290.1) SB 212 Appel. Act 262. Effective: See act.

American Law Institute Restatement of Liability Insurance Law. Senate declares that any statement of the law contained in the Restatement does not constitute the public policy of Louisiana if the statement of the law is inconsistent with or in conflict with Louisiana law. SR 149 Morrish

Requests the Louisiana State Law Institute to study provisions concerning the award of penalties and attorney fees and make recommendations to clarify and correct inconsistencies in the Louisiana Insurance Code. HR 220 Garofalo

 

Practice and procedure
Law Institute/privileges on immovables/Private Works Act (PWA). Updates terminology in PWA and related provisions. Addresses: PWA definitions; ranking of privileges; subrogation, scope of claims, and claims procedure; notice requirements, content, and penalties; bond requirements; and recordation. (Amends C.C. arts. 3249, 3267, 3269, and 3274 and R.S. 9:4801(5), 4802(A)(5), (B), (C), and (F), 4803(A)(1) and (B), 4806, 4807(B), 4808(A), (B), (C), and (D)(1), 4811(A)(2), (B), and (D), 4812(A), (B), and (E)(1) and (2), 4813(D) and (E), 4820, 4821, 4822, 4823(A), (B), (C), (E), and (F), 4831, 4832(A) and (1) and (B) and (1), 4833(A), (B), (C), and (E), 4834, 4835(A) and (C), 4841(A), (B), (C) and (3), (D), (E), and (F), 4842, and 4852(A); adds R.S. 9:4803(C) and (D), 4804, 4809, 4810, 4813(F), 4832(C) and (D), 4843, 4844, 4845, and 4846; repeals C.C. arts. 2772, 2773, 2774, 2775, 2776, 3268, and 3272 and R.S. 9:4802(G) and 4811(E); redesignates R.S. 9:4814, 4815, and 4822(M)) HB 203 Miller. Act 325. Effective: See act.

Law Institute/aleatory contract. Adds that obligations arising from gaming, gambling, and wagering not authorized by law are examples of obligations with unlawful causes. (Amends C.C. art. 1968; repeals C.C. arts. 2982-2984) HB 252 Gaines. Act 106. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Settlement payment to a minor. Limits the amount that can be placed in trust for a minor in custody of the Department of Children and Family Services to no less than $50,000 and removes the requirement that the court place the funds in trust. (Amends C.C.P. art. 4521(A)(3) and (B); repeals C.C.P. art. 4521(C)) HB 417 Hill. Act 17. Effective May 24, 2019

Civil protective order interpreters. Requires interpreter to be appointed prior to the rule to show cause if it is determined that an interpreter is necessary. Further, requires the court to order payment out of the court fund to the interpreter in civil proceedings. Specifies that the amount paid out of the court fund may be taxed by the court as costs of court to be reimbursed to the fund. (Amends C.C.P. art. 192.2 and R.S. 46:2134(A)) SB 71. Act 406. Carter. Effective: June 20, 2019

Marriage. Establishes minimum age for marriage at sixteen. Prohibits a minor sixteen or seventeen years of age from entering into a contract of marriage with a person of the age of majority where there is an age difference of three years or greater between them. Provides for nullity due to impediment of age, emancipation by marriage, officiating marriage ceremonies, marriage licenses and applications, and reporting requirements. (Amends C.C. arts. 96, 367, and 2333, R.S. 9:221, 253, 255, Ch. C. arts. 1545, 1547, and 1548; adds C.C. art. 90.1) SB 172 Colomb. Act 401. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Requests the Louisiana State Law Institute to review and study Louisiana’s in forma pauperis and related laws and report its findings by January 1, 2020. HR 283 James. SR 254 Walsworth


Professional liability/malpractice/licensure
Physician assistant. Adds physician assistants to the providers who may order or refer occupational therapy for a patient. (Amends R.S. 37:1360.31(C)(2)(a)(ii) and 3003(4)(a)) SB 166 LaFleur. Act 276. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Real estate appraisers. Provides one-year prescription and three-year peremption for action for damages against any real estate appraiser, appraisal management company, or real estate appraisal company. Prospective only. (Adds R.S. 9:5610) SB 191 Chabert. Act 323. Effective Jan. 1, 2020



Judiciary/courts
Establishes magistrate judgeship in 14th JDC beginning Jan. 1, 2021. (Adds R.S. 13:589) HB 295 Hill. Act 211. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Salaries. Increases salary of the judges by 2.5 percent on July 1 of 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023, contingent upon approval prior to each July 1 by the Louisiana Supreme Court and the Louisiana Judicial Budgetary Control Board. (Amends R.S. 13:50) SB 27 Martiny. Act 178. Effective June 11, 2019

Renames the Louisiana Supreme Court building to the “Chief Justice Pascal F. Calogero, Jr. Courthouse.” (Adds R.S. 49:149.25.1) HB 389 Stokes. Act 429. Effective: See act.



Jurisdiction and venue
Lake Charles. Increases the City Court of Lake Charles civil jurisdictional amount from $25,000 to $50,000. (Amends C.C.P. art. 4843(E) and (H)) HB 35 Franklin. Act 135. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Board of Tax Appeals. Allows Board of Tax Appeals to hear and rule on constitutional questions that arise during the course of state and local tax disputes. Contingent upon passage of constitutional amendment contained in HB 428. (Amends R.S. 47:337.45(A)(3), 337.63(C), 337.97, 1407(3), 1418(4)(b), 1435(A), (C), and (D), 1561(A)(3), and 1576(D); adds R.S. 47:1407(6) and 1431(D); repeals R.S. 47:1432(B)) HB 583 Dwight. Act 365. Effective: See act.

Business Court. Creates a task force to study and make recommendations to the Legislature on the benefits of creating a statewide business court. SR 235 Donahue



Workers’ compensation/labor/employment
Suits against the state/sexual harassment/nondisclosure agreements. Prohibits the state from using nondisclosure agreements to silence victims in sexual harassment or assault cases settled with public funds. (Adds R.S. 13:5109.1) HB 197 Foil. Act 35. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Suits against the state/sexual harassment/personal liability. Allows state to attempt to recover money from state officials or employees accused of harassment in valid sexual harassment cases. Allows the Attorney General’s Office to receive up to 25 percent of money recovered from harasser as compensation. Requires information about sexual harassment settlements involving elected officials and public employees be made available to the public, with an exception for the victim’s name. (Amends R.S. 42:342(B) and R.S. 44:4.1(B)(28); adds R.S. 42:351-355) SB 182 Hewitt. Act. 413. Effective: See act.

Expands workers’ compensation coverage to include medical benefits for volunteer reserve police officers and deputies injured in the line of duty. Explicitly bars volunteer reserve police officers from recovering for injuries related from other jobs. (Adds R.S. 23:1036.1) HB 285 Billiot. Act 306. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Guaranty association/large deductible. Provides for the right of the receiver or a guaranty association to pursue collateral. Requires the receiver to collect reimbursements owed for deductible claims, take all commercially reasonable actions to collect reimbursements, and promptly bill insureds for reimbursement of deductible claims. (Adds R.S. 22:2013.1) HB 288 Hollis. Act 109. Effective Jan. 1, 2020

Requires that the appeal of the decision by the medical director or associate medical director must be made within forty-five days of the date of the issuance of the medical director’s decision. SB 88 Luneau. Act 345. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Adds post-traumatic stress injury as a compensable claim under workers’ compensation for employees of local emergency medical services, local police departments, local fire departments, and state police as well as volunteer firefighters. (Amends R.S. 40:1374; adds R.S. 23:1036.1, and R.S. 33:2581.2) SB 107 Gatti. Act 122. Effective Aug. 1, 2019


Prohibits political subdivisions from asking about a prospective employee’s arrest record on an initial application form. Allows questions about convictions, pending felony criminal charges, or pleas of nolo contendere. Exempts positions that require a background check. (Adds R.S. 42:1702) HB 189 Morris. Act 392. Effective Aug. 1, 2019


Criminal law, procedure, and evidence
Expert testimony/eyewitness ID. Authorizes the use of expert testimony on eyewitness identification and memory in criminal cases under these conditions: There cannot be physical or scientific evidence corroborating an eyewitness identification of the defendant. The witness must be qualified by the court to give an expert opinion. No opinion can be offered on the accuracy of an eyewitness identification. (Amends C.E. Art. 702) HB 226 Harris. Act 115. Effective June 5, 2019

Hearsay. Adds an exception to the hearsay rule for statements made to health-care providers by victims of a sex offense during a forensic medical examination, where the statement is documented in writing by the health-care provider at the time of the examination. (Adds C.E. Art. 801(D)(1)(e)) HB 489 DuBuisson. Act 237. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Prior bad acts. Allows victims of domestic abuse, dating violence, human trafficking, and sexual assault to access criminal history records of witnesses or parties in civil action. The use of such records is limited for the purpose of showing evidence of similar crimes, wrongs, or acts under Art. 412.5. (Amends R.S. 15:587.7(D); adds R.S. 15:587.8) SB 156 Riser. Act 259. Effective June 11, 2019

Peremptory challenge. Amends the basis for which a peremptory challenge is used by the state or defense and requires the court to demand a satisfactory race or gender-neutral reason for the exercise of the challenge. (Amends C.Cr.P. Art. 795(C)) HB 477 DuBuisson. Act 235. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Telemarketing elder persons. Increases fine up to $10,000 when a deceptive act is knowingly committed against an elder person or person with a disability using a telephone, email, or text messaging. Limits the liability of any telephone, electronic mail, Internet, cable, or other telecommunications service provider. (Adds R.S. 51:1409.1) HB 305 Falconer. Act 14. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Post-conviction DNA testing. Extends the time period for filing an application for post-conviction relief DNA testing and for preservation of evidence, and changes the accreditation entity for the crime laboratories performing post-conviction DNA testing. (Amends C.Cr.P. Art. 926.1(A), (F), (H)(3) and (5), and (K)) HB 275 Duplessis. Act 156. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Wrongful conviction. Amends how compensation is awarded and paid to a petitioner found to be factually innocent. Requires court to award $80,000 for loss-of-life opportunities and to help cover services the petitioner may need, such as housing, education, or any other service. (Amends R.S. 15:572.8(H) and (N)(1) and (3); repeals C.C.P. Art. 87) HB 492 Larvadain. Act 121. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Prohibits harassment of a school or recreation athletic contest official. (Adds R.S. 14:38.4 and 63.5) HB 184 Henry. Act 355. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Habitual offender sentencing. A conviction for a nonviolent felony that has been set aside and dismissed after defendant has completed the conditions of a deferred sentence shall not be considered a prior offense for subsequent prosecution of the person as a habitual offender for a non-violent felony offense. (Amends R.S. 15:529.1(C) and C.Cr.P. Art. 893(E)(2), (3)(a) and (c), and (4)) HB 518 Gaines. Act 386. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

DWI and driver’s license suspension. Grants credit, under certain situations, toward suspension time to an individual who installs an approved ignition-interlock device as a requirement of bail, a part of a pretrial diversion program, or a term of a suspended or deferred sentence. HB 278 Mack. Act 396. Effective Aug. 1, 2019

Material witness arrest warrants. Prohibits the use of material witness arrest warrants in certain cases where victims of a sex offense or intimate-partner violence are unwilling to testify. (Amends R.S. 15:257; adds R.S. 15:257.1 and 625) SB 146 Morrell. Effective Aug. 1, 2019


Constitutional amendments. Election to be held on October 12, 2019.
Education Excellence Fund appropriations. HB 62 Carter. Act 445.

Outer continental shelf ad valorem tax. Exempts raw materials destined for the Outer Continental Shelf from ad valorem taxes. HB 234 Miguez. Act 444. 

Board of Tax Appeals. Extends the jurisdiction of the Board of Tax Appeals to matters concerning the constitutionality of taxes and fees. See HB 583 above. HB 428 Dwight. Act 446.

Orleans Parish affordable housing exemption. Authorizes ad valorem tax exemptions in Orleans Parish to promote affordable housing. SB 79 Carter. Act 448



Constitutional amendment. Election to be held on November 3, 2020.
Declares that no provision of the state constitution protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of abortion. HB 425 Jackson. Act 447.


Miscellaneous
Environmental self-audit. Requests the secretary of the Department of Environmental Quality to study the establishment of a voluntary compliance audit program for industries regulated by the department. Suggests that the program provide for limited privilege from disclosure of certain information in the audit and create immunity from civil penalties for disclosing and promptly remediating violations discovered. HR 231 Bishop

Removes bottle-size limits on wine shipped directly to consumers. (Amends R.S. 26:85(6) and 359(B)(1)(c); adds R.S. 26.2(3.1), and 241(2.1)) SB 34 Donahue. Act 181. Effective July 1, 2019

Extends the foster care program to age twenty-one. (Amends Ch.C. Art. 303, and R.S. 46:56(F)(7)(c) and 1403.1; adds Ch.C. Art. 303(12) and R.S. 46:288.1- 288.10; repeals R.S. 46:286.24) SB 109. Barrow. Act 400. Effective: June 19, 2019

Requests the Louisiana Supreme Court and the Louisiana State Bar Association to study solicitation advertising by attorneys and the potential need for revisions and updates to the state Rules of Professional Conduct. SCR 37 Long

Requests that the Louisiana State Law Institute study the feasibility of authorizing “series” limited-liability companies in Louisiana. SR 37 Gatti

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