Tag Archives: ambiguity

What Does Your Waiver Protect Against? Inherent Risks – Ordinary Negligence – Acts Greater than Ordinary Negligence

By Doyice Cotten

There are literally hundreds of waiver cases in which the waiver protected the provider from liability for ordinary negligence by the provider. In the Salinger case below, the waiver specifically stated that Grace Farms was released from liability for negligence (meaning ordinary negligence) and would have protected the provider from such liability. However, the plaintiff alleged “greater than ordinary negligence,” which in Minnesota meant willful and wanton conduct. In most states, waivers do not protect against gross negligence,

Colorado Court Gives Reasons for Enforcing an Equine Waiver

 

By Doyice Cotten

In a recent Colorado equine injury lawsuit (Eburn v. Capitol Peak Outfitters, Inc., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 106 236), an inexperienced rider was injured when her saddle rotated to the side and caused her to fall from the horse.  The court examined the waiver she had signed and concluded that Capitol Peak Outfitters (CPO) was protected from liability for such injuries.

The court declared the waiver clearly and unambiguously expresses the parties’ intent to preclude CPO’s liability for negligent acts.

Avoiding Ambiguity in a Waiver

By Doyice Cotten

This article was taken from Waivers & Releases of Liability 7th ed. and updated for SportWaiver.com. Click SportWaiver for a limited time special price on the book.

Courts in most states have ruled that to be enforceable, a waiver must clearly and unambiguously express the intent of the client to relieve the provider from liability for its negligence. Ambiguity is defined as doubtfulness, or doubleness of meaning and is said to exist when reasonable persons can find different meanings in the language.

Don’t Make Your Waiver Too Narrow!

Doyice Cotten

Waivers fail for many reasons, but the most common reason for failure is that they are poorly written. Often ambiguity is the major culprit, but in a recent California case one might conclude the waiver failed because it was NOT ambiguous. In fact it was too narrowly written.

Raffi Huverserian and his son Ari rented scuba diving equipment from Catalina Scuba Luv on March 30, 2005 (Huverserian v. Catalina Scuba Luv,