Liability for Sports Injuries

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 18, 2014 10:56 PM GMT
    Do you accept responsibility for your participation in potentially dangerous sports? Or should we all just switch to tiddlywinks?

    Oregon Supreme Court throws out liability waivers! If it stands, this could be huge. Look out for the inevitable Sleazy Lawyer Feeding Frenzy! Not to mention insurance premium mark-ups on everything you buy or do.

    http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2014/12/broad_liability_waivers_are_un.html#incart_river

    Should sports participants be required to carry their own insurance policies, just like drivers?
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    Dec 19, 2014 2:07 AM GMT
    I'll trot out my standard rant, which is that it's the job of the news media/reporter to grab eyeballs and thereby make money. Lost in that shuffle is covering the story completely and accurately. There's probably more to the story than what's in that article; it's probably more complicated and nuanced than a news reporter could understand.
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    Dec 19, 2014 3:35 PM GMT
    this gets lost in the nanny nation but what dosnt kill you certainty makes you strong. Get to use your ass that you have been taking to the gym for more than just good looks.

    everyone should, at some point, own a track car or a sportbike whatever. do the test and tune days:
    -some secessions it just was not working, accept that and go home.
    -you always hope for that 80% day and usually get it.
    -fail and you get to drive a friend to the er



    a lot can be done to remediate risk and or have even more fun. Safety gear; tho expensive, this technology has improved. Crash jacket, boots with kevlar sliders, whatever. Education works; at least watch the select youtube video






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    Dec 19, 2014 6:23 PM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal saidI'll trot out my standard rant, which is that it's the job of the news media/reporter to grab eyeballs and thereby make money. Lost in that shuffle is covering the story completely and accurately. There's probably more to the story than what's in that article; it's probably more complicated and nuanced than a news reporter could understand.


    All you need do is read the OR Supreme Ct's. opinion, which is linked in the article. It's a classic exposition of the interplay between tort and contract law, the kind of case I loved briefing and arguing when I was practicing. As the opinion shows - and it's not that hard a read - the Ct's.' tossing waivers is by no means as sweeping as some have suggested, and actually follows the lead of several other states' Sup. Ct's. And yes, where the law affords a remedy, any good lawyer will do his utmost to avail himself of it on his client's behalf. That's not being sleazy; it's called being professional and not to do so is called malpractice.
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    Dec 19, 2014 6:45 PM GMT
    MGINSD saidAll you need do is read the OR Supreme Ct's. opinion, which is linked in the article.

    True, but us mere mortals don't understand all that legal jargon.
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    Dec 19, 2014 11:35 PM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal said
    MGINSD saidAll you need do is read the OR Supreme Ct's. opinion, which is linked in the article.

    True, but us mere mortals don't understand all that legal jargon.


    My post/recommendation was not intended to be haughty or dismissive. Most folks w/ a good HS education find that when they actually read judicial opinions, even if it takes some effort, they're fairly easy to understand. As they should be, for the best opinions are the shortest and the most concise. This one's a bit long, but it does walk the reader - however slowly - through the issues presented and the law governing them before it states it conclusion. And, some of the best opinions are beautiful works of logic and literature, which are a genuine pleasure to read. Pretty much anything written by Justice Benjamin Cardozo fits that category.
  • tj85016

    Posts: 4123

    Dec 20, 2014 12:25 AM GMT
    the legal profession is always a self-perpetuating instrument for the legal profession

    anyone with an IQ over 90 pretty much understands risk - we just don't want to accept it
  • Muscmasmat

    Posts: 124

    Dec 20, 2014 12:26 AM GMT
    I just signed one of these waivers to get a ski lift ticket to Whistler/Blackomb. I don't mind accepting responsibility for dangerous sports and accidents that occur. What I do find objectionable is giving up my right to sue or get some remedy, if there is negligence on the part of the organization providing the sports environment that I use. I truly think that should be unconstitutional.

    It will be interesting to see if the plaintiff prevails when the case is sent back to the lower courts, after this ruling.

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    Dec 20, 2014 1:52 AM GMT
    But all of these guys are arguing that it was negligent of the owner to allow them to do the dangerous things that they did to themselves. Does not compute.

    The only example of an enforceable liability waiver that the court gives is if the customer is offered an option to pay an extra fee to enter without signing the waiver. i.e. to buy special insurance. This seems like a pretty strange law for a court to be making up. (They state that not going hot-dog snowboarding was not an option for the kid. He was somehow compelled to do so.)

    Which goes back to my original question: Should we all be required to buy special insurance before participating in any sport? Should you need a license and proof of insurance to buy a football?
  • tj85016

    Posts: 4123

    Dec 20, 2014 2:26 AM GMT
    no

    every skier knows you could hit a patch of ice or loose an edge and hit a tree

    every football played knows you could get helmet speared and wind up crippled

    every river rafter knows you get knocked over, get pulled under and drown

    every rock climber knows your protection could fail

    everyone wants to foist the risk and blame onto someone else should something tragic happen

    albeit, there are some cases of neglect, but probably relatively rare

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    Dec 20, 2014 4:29 AM GMT
    MGINSD saidMy post/recommendation was not intended to be haughty or dismissive.

    No, I didn't think it was either of those things. My "mere mortals" was an attempt at humor.
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    Dec 20, 2014 4:58 PM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal said
    MGINSD saidMy post/recommendation was not intended to be haughty or dismissive.

    No, I didn't think it was either of those things. My "mere mortals" was an attempt at humor.


    No harm, no foul. And, no waiver, either. icon_cool.gif
  • camfer

    Posts: 892

    Dec 21, 2014 7:01 PM GMT
    I always figured any competent attorney could get around any waiver I signed if ever I felt I need to make a claim. I figured signing a waiver was a way for a company to try to reduce the number of suits, and that eliminating them was impossible.
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4864

    Dec 21, 2014 9:43 PM GMT
    MGINSD said
    Lumpyoatmeal said
    MGINSD saidAll you need do is read the OR Supreme Ct's. opinion, which is linked in the article.

    True, but us mere mortals don't understand all that legal jargon.


    My post/recommendation was not intended to be haughty or dismissive. Most folks w/ a good HS education find that when they actually read judicial opinions, even if it takes some effort, they're fairly easy to understand. As they should be, for the best opinions are the shortest and the most concise. This one's a bit long, but it does walk the reader - however slowly - through the issues presented and the law governing them before it states it conclusion. And, some of the best opinions are beautiful works of logic and literature, which are a genuine pleasure to read. Pretty much anything written by Justice Benjamin Cardozo fits that category.


    That would certainly indicate that Judge Learned Hand's Alcoa Aluminum decision was not a "best opinion"; it was inordinately long. Lawyers often write sentences exceeding 70 words and although they may be syntactically and grammatically correct, they are often excruciatingly difficult to understand. Sometimes it is easier to rewrite them before attempting to understand them.
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4864

    Dec 21, 2014 9:45 PM GMT
    camfer saidI always figured any competent attorney could get around any waiver I signed if ever I felt I need to make a claim. I figured signing a waiver was a way for a company to try to reduce the number of suits, and that eliminating them was impossible.


    Courts do not always honor waivers, at least if the waiver goes too far.