“Management will not be Responsible for Accidents” Does NOT Protect in Florida Case

By Doyice Cotten

A guest at Grand Seas Resort was injured when his chair collapsed on the patio. He sued alleging negligence and the Resort claimed protection from its exculpatory clause in the “guest license agreement.” The entire exculpatory language was “Management . . . will not be responsible for accidents or injury to guest . . . .” (Hackett v. Grand Seas Resort Owner’s Association, Inc., 2012 Fla. App. LEXIS 10111)

The trial court granted summary judgment,

Waiver Should Specify What Action is Being Released!

By Doyice Cotten

A lot rides on a liability waiver; they often determine whether the provider wins or loses a negligence suit. It is important enough that the waiver creator should take care to make certain that the waiver clearly defines the intent of the document. The following two cases clearly illustrate the importance of clarity of language. Note the brevity of the exculpatory language in each case.

*****

In Hackett v.

A Tale of 3 Waivers

By Doyice Cotten

On a recent trip to North Carolina, I picked up a copy of their waiver from three whitewater rafting companies – Nantahala Outdoor Center, Inc. (NOC), Carolina Outfitters, Inc., and Whitewater LTD Rafting. The waiver of each company is probably adequate to protect the company from liability for injuries resulting from negligence of the operator or from the inherent risks of the operator. Some important points from each waiver will be examined here.

First Things First when Writing a Waiver

By Doyice Cotten

Many people and businesses rely on waivers to protect against legal liability for injuries resulting from negligent acts by the business or its employees. Some of those relying think waivers will always protect; others, more realistically, realize that waivers can protect under some circumstances, but not under others. The waivers in the following three sport and recreation waiver cases failed to protect for, essentially, the same error. Look for the similarities and check your waiver for that mistake.

Effect of Waiver in Ohio Cheerleader Case

By Doyice Cotten

In a recent case (Wolfe v. AmeriCheer, Inc., 2012 Ohio App. LEXIS 827), a 13 year- old cheerleader suffered a spinal compression injury when a fellow cheerleader fell on her during the execution of a stunt. Only one of the three spotters was in proper position on the mat when she fell. Wolfe’s mother had signed a waiver releasing AmeriCheer from liability.

The trial court enforced the waiver ruling that the waiver protected against negligence claims (Ohio being one of the states in which parental waivers are enforced).

NY GOL 5-326 and Apartment Building Gyms

By

Doyice Cotten and Mary Cotten

In Roer v. 150 West End Avenue Owners Corp. (2010 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 6353), Jason Roer brought action seeking damages for personal injuries sustained in the basement gym of the apartment building where he and his wife reside. While exercising on a treadmill in the gym, he was caused to fall and suffer injury when a loose exercise ball was pulled beneath the belt of his treadmill. He had signed a waiver intended to relieve management of liability for negligence contained in his gym membership contract.

Duty and Liability

by Charles R. Gregg

Readers will find that this to be an informative legal liability article. “Reb” Gregg is one of the nation’s top adventure law attorneys. This article originally appeared on Reb’s website.

Q. How do I run a good program without being sued?                                                                             

A. You can’t. People can and may sue you, with or without justification. And even the best program can make mistakes which might provoke the lawsuit.

Michigan Court Rules in Child Drowning Case (Pool Owner Not Liable) and Cheerleader Injury Case (Coaches and Organization May Be Held Liable)

By Alexander “Sandie” Pendleton of KMK

The Michigan Court of Appeals recently has issued decisions in two cases involving recreational liability (Estate of Wheeler v. Central Michigan Inns, Inc., April 14, 2011, and Sherry v. East Suburban Football League, March 17, 2011). Both decisions emphasize the importance of recreational-opportunity providers being vigilant about injury risks.

The Wheeler case arose out of the tragic drowning death of five-year-old Domonique “Dom” Wheeler.

Do Industry Standards Increase Our Liability?

Readers will find that this is one of the best pieces to be found relating to industry standards and liability. Our thanks go to author “Reb” Gregg and to Steve Smith who originally published the article in Touchstones – News and Resources for Outdoor Programs for permission to run the article in SportWaiver.com. Touchstones is a publication of Experiental Consulting which focuses on risk management, staff training, and human resources for outdoor programs and is edited by Steve Smith.

Provider Not Liable Due to Equine Activity Liability Statute

This recent case is intended to complement and supplement the excellent article Landowner Liability Under Equine and Recreational Use Statutes written by Holly Rudolph (also published today on this site). This illustrative case,  summarized and abridged by Doyice Cotten, clearly illustrates the importance of state Equine Activity Liability Statutes to providers of equine activities. The reader is invited to read the case in its entirety for more information.

PERRY v. WHITLEY COUNTY 4-H CLUBS INC.