The bill amends Section 5-1-16 of the General Laws in Chapter 5-1 entitled "Architects" to provide immunity from civil liability for architects and architectural firms licensed in Rhode Island when they voluntarily provide services without compensation at the scene of a disaster emergency. The bill specifies that such architects or firms will not be liable for personal injury, wrongful death, property damage, or other losses caused by their acts or omissions while performing these services. Additionally, the bill includes a new provision that architects and architectural firms, as well as all authorized disaster response workers who practice their professional skills during a disaster emergency without compensation, shall be considered state employees and entitled to the same rights as state employees under certain provisions of the law.

The immunity granted by this section is limited to the practice of architecture as defined in the chapter and only applies to services related to the structural integrity of buildings, structures, or systems identified in a disaster emergency executive order or proclamation. The immunity does not cover acts or omissions of gross negligence or willful misconduct. Furthermore, in the event of a declared state disaster, registered architects with a National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) certification will be allowed to practice for 90 days from the date of the disaster declaration. The bill will take effect upon passage.