Due to the rising cases of lawsuits against trampoline owners and trampoline park operators, there has been a resultant increase in the use of trampoline liability waiver forms. We all know how you can put in all of the safety measures possible in place and still record an accident. When this happens, it becomes obvious that the trampoline owner is not to blame.
The accident could have resulted due to recklessness on the part of the trampoline user. So to avoid going down for what one wasn’t directly responsible for, the liability waiver form is a good point of call.
So What is a Waiver Form?
A waiver is the voluntary relinquishment or surrender of some known right or privilege backed by the law. It’s a document that seeks to get written responses from an individual that confirms that they are relinquishing a specified privilege or right (mostly right to sue) in case of unforeseen circumstances.
It is the voluntary action of a person or party that legally removes that person’s or party’s right or particular ability in an agreement. The agreement is a legal document between two parties — the Releasor or person promising not to sue — and the Releasee or person or company who is potentially liable. It’s a bunding covenant not to sue.
It is a business’ way of reducing their risk of legal suits when clients get injured or dissatisfied while consuming their service. Think of it as a safety document as we all know of the debilitating effects that recurrent lawsuits can have on any business.
Generally, the waiver form contains a written message to the signer informing him of his privileges that he is relinquishing. It then provides spaces for signature and date. If the signer, pens down his signature and dates it, it means he understood and has agreed to relinquish those rights. Legal action from such a person becomes nearly impossible in case of a mishap.
Who Needs a Waiver
While it is possible to tend to focus attention on commercial trampoline park operators whenever the trampoline liability waiver form is mentioned, the truth is that this form is needed by everyone who has a trampoline that is open to usage by others. Because of think of how a parent can sue a school in the event of a trampoline accident involving their child or ward. Haven said that, let’s look at the entities who need a trampoline waiver.
The homeowner trampoline waiver form is very necessary for any home that has a trampoline that is being used by children in the neighborhood. As a homeowner, you need to realize that you can be a subject of legal action if you fail to provide a waiver form to anybody wanting a jump on your home trampoline.
If yours is a rental home, then you can get a trampoline waiver for rental property. We know how kids like to play together. Your neighbors have kids who would love to join your kids on the trampoline. It might seem a little extreme but insist that they sign the trampoline waiver for neighbors.
As a landlord of a property with a trampoline facility, you need a landlord trampoline waiver form to protect you and your property from a possible legal action resulting from trampoline accidents in your property.
Schools are highly susceptible to trampoline accident legal action because of the large number of students under their care, there is a wide variety of school waiver forms one of which is the trampoline waiver for daycare.
4. Trampoline Parks
As a trampoline park operator, there are a lot of things you can achieve with your waiver. While the most important one is protecting yourself from legal actions, you can as well use it to communicate your park rules and regulations to prospective customers.
Additionally, you can inform them of the unsuitability of trampoline jumps for pregnant women, people with brittle bones or detaching retinas and other similar conditions.
Does a Waiver Protect You from Legal Action?
Yes, a waiver form can protect you from legal actions in some cases, but it won’s stop you from getting sued. What it does is to give you an edge over the person suing you but you may still have to spend by way of a brief legal tussle. Also, you may be liable for accidents resulting from the negligent act of the operator as this is not usually covered in the waiver. Generally, you can be sued for any incident that is not included in the waiver.
The use of a liability waiver should not in any way take away the need for liability insurance.
Benefits of a Waiver Form
The benefits of a waiver form are:
It protects you from legal actions for incidents beyond your control.
It can be used to communicate your trampoline rules and regulations to prospective users.
It gives a platform to warn your prospective user of the inherent dangers involves the trampoline.
It can also be used to inform your prospective user of people who are allowed to use a trampoline.
It gives you an added qualification for Insurance companies to work with you.
How to Get a Waiver Form
Write it Yourself
A waiver form is a legal document that requires legal terms that may not be in your everyday vocabulary, but should you decide you are up to the task, there is a lot of online assistance that can make your work a lot easier.
One of such is the websites with free waiver templates that you can just download and use the outline to come up with yours. There are several places online where you can get good waiver forms/letters. All you need is to select the location of your business and click on “create my document” and get a free printable trampoline waiver form at the snap of a finger.
How to Write it
When faced with the need of writing a trampoline liability waiver form, you can get a standard waiver form online and make slight adjustments to it since nearly all waiver forms are worded nearly identically. Make sure it covers all there is to cover to avoid getting dragged for a clause you mistakenly omitted.
What You Must Include in the Waiver Form/Letter
Find examples of trampoline waivers to guide you as you write.
Keep your letter brief and get directly to the point. Avoid including any non-relevant information in your letter. Include a clear statement of what you are asking to have waived in the opening paragraph of your letter. When possible provide examples as evidence to back up your reasons for requesting a waiver.
Include the date the waiver is executed, Include an “assumption of risk” clause in the waiver, a “hold harmless” provision in the waiver, Specify which injuries the release applies to, State that you don’t provide insurance for participants, Include a “severability clause” in the waiver, explain how the waiver should be interpreted, add a choice of law provision to the waiver, add signature lines to the waiver, warn the person signing to read the waiver and release carefully.
The form must be written with a good understanding we the laws in the state or region where you reside (in some states parents cannot sign away the rights of minors to sue). Ensure it does not violate the laws or policies of the area. Sometimes these laws change so quickly so ensure you’re in the know of the latest updates.
2. Get an Attorney
The attorney is a better option for getting a waiver form for obvious reasons. They are not just trained to get you basic waivers, they have the expertise required to draft other trampoline documents such as trampoline permission slip, trampoline attractive nuisance, and trampoline permission waiver.
Hiring an attorney to craft a waiver and release that’s suits perfectly your situation and language-specific to your state of residence requirements is well worth the expense as a generic waiver and release may not protect adequately protect you or your organization.
3. Let Your Insurance Company Write it
Your insurance company can also help you come up with custom waiver forms depending on whether you are a homeowner, school or trampoline, park operator.
You should also know that waivers of liability are not enforced in every state. Some states will enforce them, but some won’t. If you have a question about whether your waiver can be enforced in the state you reside one, then you should contact a qualified attorney for help.
Having an authentic and legally binding waiver form is important as a homeowner, landlord, trampoline park or school. It may not totally exonerate you from legal battles but will give you a strong backing and minimize legal actions against you.
Marks of a Good Waiver
- The waiver shows clearly that its purpose is to grant absolution of all liability, including that which results from negligence. Some states do not allow for this though.
- The waiver is easily seen by the person signing it. It is not deep within a contract.
- It has a clear provision for signature. Only to be signed by the party it will be used against.
- The injuries incurred are clearly mentioned in the waiver (in either the known or unknown risks portion).
- The wordings in the waiver perfectly follow any and all of the provisions of the state’s laws.
- The waiver is within the ambit of the state laws. It does not violate any state laws or public policies.
Whether you are writing the liability release form yourself or an attorney is writing it for you the above requirements must be evident. That way you can be sure you would be reaping the benefit of your waiver form.
Terkura Vincent is a Trampoline Safety Advocate and CEO of Casdale Trampoline Safety Centre. Our passion is to see families enjoy trampoline with utmost safety. You can help us do this by sharing the articles with other families that use trampoline.
You can reach Kevin at firstname.lastname@example.org