Author Topic: Liability  (Read 2372 times)

Offline Stevie Leifheit

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Liability
« on: August 09, 2011, 06:12:34 PM »
What do you guys about liability? I was setting up a group for me to "teach" within the next week. Then it hit me, if we are training in a public place, and someone gets hurt, can they sue me? Am I liable?



Let me know how you guys handle stuff like this!


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Offline Michael Bergeron

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Re: Liability
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2011, 09:24:07 PM »
For the TL;DR,  Legal responsibility:  None

Because you are on public property and you and the participants have had full disclosure of the risks involved in this activity, there is no liability to which you can be held, in the event of an accident...UNLESS, you intentionally cause it, i.e. round-house kick a newb in the face as he/she comes out of a roll.


If you are really worried, i suggest the following:

1)  Go to a local university and speak to the Student's Legal Assistance Office (SLAO) for full confirmation based on the laws in your state.
2)  Draft a waiver using some basic guidelines found here: http://athleticbusiness.com/articles/article.aspx?articleid=3370&zoneid=30    after that, have all participants sign and date 2 copies, 1 for them, 1 for you.   Maybe even have the SLAO review the waiver just to make sure.
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Offline Alec Furtado

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Re: Liability
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2011, 06:23:24 PM »
No, you are still liable pretty much regardless of any waiver as far as I know. In my long talk with risk management at SCU, this is how it goes (if something happens and someone sues, obviously):

You'll get pulled up for a lawsuit. You'll say what you were doing. The defense will go, "Yea, parkour?" and then will proceed to show a bunch of YouTube videos to the jury and show how "crazy" it all is. Here's an excerpt from the talk (can find it my other thread too about university parkour programs):

Quote
we’ve to think about, ”Ok, we could get sued, that’s fine. But when we get sued, what are the people going to think about? What’s the jury gonna look like?” The jury is going to think James Bond… the opening scene of James Bond. Jumping around, that’s what the plaintiff’s attorney is going to show. “Look at this, this is crazy, they’re falling through things, they’re going crazy.” That’s the overall perception. And then, they’ll go to Youtube and they’re going to find all the crazy Youtube videos that are just random… of people that are doing parkour… or it looks like parkour, but it may not be doing what you’re doing. And so, they’re going to see that. They’re going to say, “What did Alec give you when he wanted the representation or he wanted to get approved?” So then we’re going to say, “Ok, well here’s the video.” They’re going to subpoena it. “Here’s the video that he provided.” So the first part of that video had all of the usual stuff, people jumping off buildings, off of roofs, et cetera. So that’s what they’re gonna see, and they’re like, “Holy crap, that’s crazy! This is exactly what they’re doing.” When in reality it’s not. You guys are doing what you were showing in the other parts, jumping off the sidewalk, jumping down the stairs, doing pullups and stuff like that. But the perception and what the court’s going to see and what the jury is going to see is this crazy parkour thing and the issue is going to be as student who “was doing parkour,” even though he might have been just going down the steps in the stadium, falling, hitting his head, and now is in a coma forever just because… we did everything we could, but he still hit his head. That’s what we’ve got to think about and that’s going to be the perception. The perception at this point of parkour is that it’s crazy… that may not be the reality or what you want to do, but that’s the perception.

It's all what the jury thinks, and frankly right now, it probably won't tip in our favor. As was laid out in my other thread, we need to get some standardization going (and no, that won't kill parkour people ;)). If you can say, "Hey, we did everything right, we followed the tried and true guidelines of this national organizations. This was just some accident and we are not in the wrong." then you're much better off.
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