Hide No Harm Act of 2014, House Bill Summary

July 16, 2014 | Download PDF

The Hide No Harm Act imposes a duty on corporations and key corporate management to disclose serious dangers with their products or production process. Failure to disclose known dangers is made a criminal act, punished by fine and/or up to five years in prison.

Who is covered: Section 2082 establishes a duty for business entities and responsible corporate officers. Responsible corporate officers are defined in Section 2081(6) as persons who by reason of their management position acquire knowledge of serious dangers associated with products on production processes, and have responsibility for reporting such dangers to government agencies, employees or the public.

The duty imposed: Section 2082(a) requires corporations and key corporate managers to

(1) disclose information about serious dangers of their products or production processes to relevant government agencies,

(2) warn affected employees about these serious dangers

(3) notify consumers or other members of the public imperiled by a company’s products or business practices.

Section 2081(8) defines “serious danger” as one that is not readily apparent to a reasonable person, and poses an imminent risk of serious bodily injury or death.

Penalties established: Per section 2082(b)(1), corporations or key corporate managers who violate their duty under the Hide No Harm Act shall be fined or imprisoned for not more than five years. Section 2082(b)(2) establishes that corporations cannot pay fines imposed on individuals for violating the Act.

Prohibition against retaliation for issuing required warnings: Section 2082(c) forbids retaliation against any person who disclosed information or issued warnings required by the Hide No Harm Act, and establishes procedures for employees to enforce these protections against retaliation.

No limits on existing rights to intervene: Section 2083 establishes that no provision of the Hide No Harm Act limits any preexisting rights to intervene in matters before regulatory agencies or to participate in civil actions related to dangerous products or business practices.

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The Coalition for Sensible Safeguards is an alliance of consumer, small business, labor, scientific, research, good government, faith, community, health, environmental, and public interest groups, as well as concerned individuals, joined in the belief that our country’s system of regulatory safeguards provides a stable framework that secures our quality of life and paves the way for a sound economy that benefits us all.