Tag Archives: Connecticut

Connecticut Court Admits Waiver to Show Plaintiff Knew the Inherent Risk of Horseback Riding

By Doyice J. Cotten

Stefana Pecher took riding lesson at Showtime Stables which was owned by Rhea Distefano. After about six lessons, the horse ridden by Pecher was acting lazy, was not obeying commands, and was reacting slowly. She was told by the instructor to use the crop to tap lightly on the shoulder of the horse; the horse bolted, causing her to fall and injure herself.

During the trial, the defense entered into evidence a photo of a warning sign posted at eye level at the barn door and a liability waiver signed by the plaintiff.

Another Waiver Fails to Protect in Connecticut

By Doyice Cotten

Ronald Perry and his minor son filed suit against the Town of East Haddam after the son (Tucker) was injured while riding a scooter while attending  a “Summer day camp.” (Perry v. Town of East Haddam, 2016 Conn. Super. LEXIS 1149).  They alleged, among other things, negligent supervision on the part of the town and the supervisor of the program.

Defendants responded to the suit by claiming they were protected by a liability waiver and indemnification agreement signed prior to the injury.

LOST WAIVERS: What Happens If You Can’t Produce a Signed Waiver?

LOST WAIVERS: What Happens If You Can’t Produce a Signed Waiver?

By Doyice Cotten

A recreation or sport provider is only half way home when they require that a client sign a liability waiver. The other half is being able to produce that waiver a year or two later when the lawsuit comes to trial.

Lost or missing waivers can be costly to the service provider.  In a New York case (Schaeffer v.

Connecticut Wall Climbing Waiver Fails

By Doyice Cotten

In a 2014 case, a Connecticut Superior Court failed to enforce a pre-injury waiver signed by the plaintiff (Lecuna v. Carabiners Fairfield, LLC, 2014 Conn. Super LEXIS 2610). Plaintiff fell from the facility while “bouldering” and sued claiming negligence.
Among the allegations were:

• Climbing hold attachment turned or came loose.
• Attendant “spotter” had walked away and was not present to break the fall.

Connecticut Court Relies on Reardon Ruling in Declaring Health Club Waiver Violates Public Policy

By Doyice Cotten

A woman was injured while working with a trainer employed by Planet Fitness. The trainer had lifted Butler onto a bosu balance ball and walked away. As she dismounted from the ball, she fell and suffered injury.

She filed suit claiming negligence; Planet Fitness countered with a liability waiver signed by the plaintiff as a defense. Part of the waiver language stated that the signer released Planet Fitness “from any responsibility or liability for any injury or damage to myself,

Connecticut, California, and North Dakota Courts Address Parental Waivers

By Doyice Cotten

Recent 2013 cases in Connecticut, California, and North Dakota have addressed the question as to whether parents have the authority to sign away the rights of a minor to recover for injury resulting from the negligence of the provider.

California Case

Lotz v. The Claremont Club (2013 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5748) involved a 10 year-old who was injured in a dodgeball game. It is well established that California law allows the enforcement of parental waivers provided the waiver is unambiguous and meets court requirements.