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The legal impact of emergency responders’ actions and decisions during interstate response and the need for a national immunity law

Steven E. Standridge, PhD Student


Law enforcement, emergency medical, and fire service agencies are being increasingly scrutinized as never before. The legal implications of litigations such as Kershner v Burlington, Sanders v The Board of County Commissioners of the County of Jefferson, Colorado, and the Cedar Fire lawsuits are clear. Decision makers and the agencies they represent are being held liable for their actions and decisions. This may necessitate the crafting and implementation by national policy makers of a more uniformed nationwide immunity law to help protect responders from the patchwork of state laws that currently exists. This is particularly relevant in an era of cross state, regional, and federal mutual aid response where emergency workers are exposed to uneven immunity laws that expose them to significant legal ramifications.


Columbine, immunity laws, litigation, mutual aid, first responders, Cedar Fire, Sanders v Jefferson County, Kershner v Burlington

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