Whether you are joining a gym or visiting a local ski resort, you may be presented with a liability waiver. These waivers are meant to protect the facility you’re visiting or using, and ultimately keep you from suing them if you become injured on their property.
But, what if you are gravely injured due to the property owner’s negligence? Does that mean you cannot sue for your injuries?
Most people sign liability waivers with the assumption that safety protocols are still in place and that the property owner has not neglected any maintenance. Unfortunately, after an injury, these individuals find out that it does not seem to matter the circumstances of their injury because the company refuses to pay.
An Unconscionable Waiver is Not Enforceable
Liability waivers that are deemed “unconscionable” are not enforceable in court. This means if a liability waiver’s provisions are unfair, offensive or worthless, courts are unlikely to enforce the terms of the contract in a lawsuit.
Many Liability Waivers are Enforceable
Most liability waivers, like those you sign before taking skydiving lessons or joining a gym, are enforceable. These waivers often state that you agree to use the facility or participate at your own risk; therefore, if you are injured, you cannot sue them for damages. But, if these waivers remove all liability, then the courts may determine they are unenforceable.
An enforceable waiver typically excuses the property owner or their employees from any damages that occurred because of negligence. If someone acted maliciously, however, such as purposely caused an injury to another person, then the waiver does not remove his or her liability and they could be held liable.
Do Not Feel You Have to Sign
While a company may make it seem as though you must sign the waiver in order to use their facility or services, you do not have to sign the agreement. You may not be granted your gym membership, but you also can go home knowing you did not sign a legally binding contract that could cause you grief later.
Signatures are not Required to Enforce Liability Waivers
You may have agreed to a liability waiver without reading or signing anything, and it is perfectly legal. There are fine prints included on entry signs, seasonal passes, and even the back of your movie ticket. The courts will uphold these waivers, assuming you had the chance to read the terms. As long as the terms were printed where you could easily see them they will be enforced.
Injured after Signing a Liability Waiver? Contact an Attorney
Even if you signed a waiver, you may still be able to bring a lawsuit against a company due to their negligence. Schedule a free consultation with West Palm Beach personal injury attorney at Fetterman & Associates, PA today for more information. We can review the terms of your liability waiver and see if you still have a potential lawsuit.