Tag Archives: inherent risks

Yikes!! An Injury — Am I Liable?

By Doyice Cotten 

Sport and recreation managers are often confused about their liability in the event of an injury. This is understandable because the law is far from simple. The intent of this post and the included table is to reduce at least some of the confusion.

First, injuries result from one of three causes. The cause of injury may be a simple accident or an “inherent risk” of the activity. In this case the provider usually has no liability providing the injured party was aware of the inherent risks of the activity.

Puerto Rico Jet Ski Waiver Emphasizes the Inherent Risks of the Activity

By Doyice Cotten  

The primary purpose of a liability waiver is to protect the entity from liability for injuries resulting from the negligence of the entity and its employees. A secondary function of the waiver is to help provide protection from liability for injuries resulting from the inherent risks of the activity. Technically, the provider is not usually liable for injuries associated with the inherent risks – provided the injured party was familiar with those inherent risks. The listing of inherent risks in the waiver can provide evidence that the participant was aware of the inherent risks;

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.

Two Virginia Courts Admit Redacted Waivers to Show Plaintiff Understood the Risks

By Doyice Cotten

James McConnel was injured while participating in Segway Polo associated with Omni Hotels Management Corp. The issue came up as to the admissibility of the waiver signed by McConnel (McConnel v. Omni Hotels Mgmt. Corp., 2017).  Since prospective waivers of liability are void as against public policy under Virginia law (Hiett v. Lake Barcroft Cmty. Ass’n, Inc., 1992),  Omni asked the court to rule that the “Segway Personal Transporter Tours Liability Release Form”

Duty and Liability (Revisited)

We are revisiting five of Reb Gregg’s previous posts on Sportwaiver.com. Nothing has changed since the article was originally posted. It provides important information for the service provider.

Doyice

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?                                                                             

Florida Waiver Law for Minors

By Doyice Cotten

The Florida Supreme Court (Kirton v. Fields, 2008) has ruled that parental waivers designed to protect commercial entities from liability for negligence are not enforceable. Florida appellate courts, however, have enforced parental waivers when used by schools or recreational entities (Krathen v. School Board of Monroe Country, Fla., 2007; Gonzalez v. City of Coral Gables, 2004).

In 2013, the Florida Legislature passed F.S.

Hawaii Waiver Law Clarified: Waivers Don’t Protect Against Negligence!!!

By Doyice Cotten

Waiver law in Hawaii has been unclear for some time. In the past, waivers have been enforced in Hawaii, however, in 1997 the Hawaii Legislature passed HRS § 663-1.54 which read in part:

(a) Any person who owns or operates a business providing recreational activities to the public, such as, without limitation, scuba or skin diving, sky diving, bicycle tours, and mountain climbing, shall exercise reasonable care to ensure the safety of patrons and the public,

Alaska Supreme Court Clarifies Alaska Waiver Law in Rock Gym Case

By Doyice Cotten

Claire Donahue (Donahue v. Ledgends, Inc., 2014 Alas. LEXIS 153) signed up for a rock climbing class at Ledgends (dba Alaska Rock Gym). She was inexperienced in climbing, but active in other sport activities.

Waiver

Prior to her first class Donahue signed a Participant Release of Liability, Waiver of Claims, Assumption of Risks, and Indemnity Agreement. She signed it voluntarily, but failed to read it carefully.   

Utilize the “Negligence of the Provider” — But Address Negligence Risks and Inherent Risks Separately

By Doyice Cotten

On countless occasions, this author has stressed two points. First, is the value (or even necessity) of including specific reference to the “negligence of the provider” in the exculpatory language of a waiver. In many states, the term is mandated in order for a waiver to be enforced; in others, it is strongly recommended. Alternately, in some states, general language such as “any and all claims” is sufficient. In Florida, four of its Districts require the use of the term “negligence.” In its 5th District (the district hearing this case),

Waiver Terminology (Part II)

By Doyice Cotten

 This is Part II of this series. You will notice that while Part I consisted of seven terms that were closely related in that all were designed to protect against liability for ordinary negligence and that were for the most part synonymous, Part II consists of very different terms. I would recommend that you review Part I when you finish Part II.

Indemnity Agreement

An indemnity agreement is a contract signed prior to participation by which participant or another party agrees to reimburse the provider for any monetary loss,