A liability waiver, also called a release or release liability waiver forms, are legal agreements intended to limit a person’s right to sue a company, organization, or other third party.
This legal contract is very common and you may be asked to sign a liability waiver before you take part in ordinary activities like a gym, recreational sport, theme park, or anything else with inherent risks or unforeseen potential risks.
Though common signing waivers carry substantial legal import that may undercut your ability at all to bring a personal injury case after ordinary negligence, gross negligence, or even intentional misconduct that leads to a traumatic brain injury, wrongful death, or other harm.
Talk to a personal injury lawyer if you signed a waiver or may sign waivers especially if there were injuries sustained. Our attorney can collect your contact information and discuss the circumstances of your accidents and who may be liable to the injured even if they signed liability waivers.
Remember, you may still recover damages under state law after you sign a liability waiver and a personal injury lawyer may review the legal document with you to determine that possibility. The next sections analyze this issue further.
How are Liability Waivers Used in Commercial Practices?
There are only a few reasons why a company or business will ask you to sign a liability waiver typically.
These are often demanded by that entity’s general liability insurance and business insurance policies and the fine print must comply with state laws on a state by state basis in clear, explicit, and unambiguous language or the injured party may file a lawsuit for their injury despite the fact that they signed a waiver, used reasonable care, have workers compensation, or there was no liability or negligence.
The first reason that you will sign a liability waiver is to state that you have been warned that certain risks (or risk) may arise during the event.
This is intended by the defendants to show you assumed the risk of failure or harm should it arise under the law if the injured were to bring a case in court after that exact risk manifested. Most states accept this provision so a company will most likely use it.
The second reason that a company or business may use a liability waivers is to reduce or eliminate their liability in court for injuries incurred from ordinary negligence as opposed to gross negligence.
Ordinary negligence is the failure to do what a reasonable person would in the circumstances. Gross negligence implies that same failure but also extreme recklessness or wanton disregard for the welfare of others. A jury will determine the difference.
Again, clear language is needed for whatever you are asked to sign a liability waiver and the business must reference the unsafe conditions, liability, negligence, injury, injuries, risk, and risks. Otherwise, we advice our clients that waiver will not be enforceable and won’t protect a business even if you sign it or signed it already in subsequent lawsuits.
This is because a court ruled public policy and the norms of responsibility demand that the business be held liable to clients, employees, and others injured. In other words, you can still sue and file a lawsuit for your injuries even after you dismissed the risks by signing a release
How Do You Defeat a Liability Waiver?
Attorneys have long sought compensation and justice from businesses that breached safety and caused injuries. Many times a court will hold that businesses should have responsibility in lawsuits under the law despite whatever the plaintiff signed in the event they are sued.
Here are the two most common reasons of why you can sue despite signing a release that the law might ordinarily think would protect a business:
- The risk or injury was not disclosed, and, therefore it was not unforeseen. Your expectations of safety are set by what the company tells you about its services. Thus, it should be able to be sued if it does not adequately inform you as to the full potential of risk of injury and a waiver will not be enforceable if it does not.
- The injury was caused by more than mere negligence. A waiver will frequently be dismissed if the incident arose due to an intentional tort or gross negligence. The service provider must take measures to prevent these from happening or a waiver will be dismissed and you will be able to sue them under the law.
Examples of Gross Negligence that Would Destroy Liability Waivers
After reviewing many lawsuits across the country, we have summarized some conduct that might make a waiver null and void and help you compensation in court.
- Failing to clean, maintain, inspect, repair, or replace equipment.
- Failing to follow local, state, or federal guidelines with respect to the services or goods being offered.
- Failing of the service provider to reasonably train, supervise, or hire staff. This is especially the case when staff must be certified in order to work in their roles.
- Failing to have sufficient first aid equipment on hand at the site.
- Failing to take measures to prevent latent dangers from harming customers.
Talk to us before you sign a waiver so we can offer you legal advice on how to protect you and your family.
What Compensation Can You Obtain after Defeating a Waiver?
If you defeat a waiver in court, you will be able to proceed to trial and try and make your case. Success in this phase of your claim will make relief possible.
The type and amount of compensation you collect will be determined by your injuries and the form of case that you file. Generally, you get one of a few kinds of damages.
Economic Damages – Injured plaintiffs can seek recovery for their out of pocket expenses after dismissing a waiver including their medical bills, lost income, and property damages.
Non Economic Damages – You may pursue relief for your intangible harms once you have removed the validity of a waiver covering things like disfigurement, disability, or pain and suffering.
Punitive Damages – Plaintiffs may be awarded punitive damages to punish reckless defendants and prevent similar acts in the future but you need to nullify the waiver first.
Wrongful Death Damages – Families can collect money for the incredible loss of a loved one and the subsequent lost companionship, missed support, and extraordinary grief that comes with a family member’s death despite signing a release.
Talk to us if you loved one suffered harm after signing a liability waiver. We may be able to help and you can call us toll free to find out today.
Trusted Legal Advice about a Waiver after an Accident
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC helps of victims of serious accidents pursue legal relief and compensation in court and settlement. We have helped many families get the help they need after traumatic events even when they were forced to sign a waiver.
Contact our legal firm at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today to schedule a free consultation. Then, let’s discuss how filing a personal injury case can ensure your family receives the monetary recovery you deserve.
All confidential and sensitive information you share with your experienced personal injury attorney about the waiver remains private through an attorney-client relationship. Our law firm accepts all personal injury cases through contingency fee agreements, meaning that no fees are paid until the case is successfully resolved.