Adventure sports liability waivers

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Adventure sports liability waivers

Many adventure sport companies that offer kayaking, skiing, and skydiving have waivers so you, the client, acknowledges there are risks. Many of the ones I’ve seen also include clauses that say “I the client accept the responsibility, even if the service provider is negligent/careless”. Is that particular clause valid? How does the validity vary with state? I’m willing to assume risk of bad weather, but I rely on the company to maintain the equipment I’m renting and to provide important information about weather/water conditions.Thanks!

Asked on May 13, 2009 under Personal Injury, California

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

The validity of liability waivers varies greatly by state. In some states certain waivers are unenforceable by statute, in other states they are unenforceable as a matter of public policy, and in some states they are legal provided they are reasonable. It also depends on what the clause purports to do. For example, in state X a clause that exculpates a ski resort from simple negligence will be honored, but one that would exculpate the resort from liability for gross negligence or recklessness would not be. In state Y the law may authorize waivers of gross negligence as well. 


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