The enjoyment of certain recreational activities demands possession of the proper equipment. An outdoor or sporting enthusiast that lacks the appropriate gear can look for a place from which to lease it. Leasing companies often ask the customer to sign a waiver.
The waiver’s purpose
Such waivers indicate that the customer has waived his or her legal rights, if something happens during the risky activity or adventure. In the absence of such a document, the leasing company could get sued. Canadians should note any waiver’s exact wording, because the safety features of Canadian adventure companies are not well-regulated.
The times when a signed waiver may not be binding
• The customer gets asked to sign document at the last minute. That customer does not have time to read the waiver’s wording. The same person is unable to seek more detailed information.
• Customer was told to sign, even after saying that he or she does not understand all parts of the document.
• Company did not provide each customer with own waiver. Instead, one paper circulated among group of customers; signatures placed on that shared paper.
• Company included waiver in a multi-page document. Customers were not clear on contents of same document. Company makes no attempt to highlight or call attention to the waiver.
• Waiver not written in manner that makes terms clear to customers. Customers raise questions, but those go unanswered.
Due to its wording, the signed waiver has a limited scope. For instance, it might fail to cover a specific defect on some piece of equipment.
Other situations that could push a victim or a victimized family to seek a lawyer’s assistance
The waiver gets signed by an adult, but the same adult dies during a tragic accident. That lone adult was with a couple children. What rights do they have? Can a company legally justify the readiness to ignore the needs of such children? What rights do a second parent or guardian have, if neither of them has signed a waiver?
Unknown to the adventure company, someone creates an obstacle on a trail. Someone that has leased some hiking equipment gets hurt, when forced to deal with that obstacle. Who should be sued, the adventure company or the person/group that created the hazard? Can either be sued, if the hiker has signed a waiver?
A man leases a boat on a river with known eddies. He takes his son and the son’s friend with him. At one point the boys decide to jump overboard and swim; the two get caught in an eddy. The man reaches out to save them; he pulls one of them in. It is his own son; who should the family of the deceased boy sue?
There are various aspects to consider and that is why it is essential to consult a personal injury lawyer in Calgary before filing a claim.