Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act of 1996
P.L. 104-210 (October 1, 1996) was named in honor of the late Congressman who was a champion of efforts to expand food donations to the poor and to protect those who make donations. It converts the Model Good Samaritan Food Donation Act to permanent law and incorporates it into the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (section 22). Good samaritan laws are designed to encourage the donation of food and groceries to nonprofit charitable agencies by minimizing the risks of legal actions against donors and distributors of foods. The 1996 amendments exclude from civil or criminal liability a person or nonprofit food organization that, in good faith, donates or distributes donated foods for food relief. The new law does not supersede state or local health regulations and its protections do not apply to an injury or death due to gross neglect or intentional misconduct.