New Minnesota statute attempted to eliminate releases and thankfully, might have made release law in MN betterPosted: July 2, 2014 Filed under: Minnesota, Release (pre-injury contract not to sue) | Tags: Greater than Ordinary Negligence, Gross, Intentional Negligence, Minnesota, Minor, Negligence, parent, Release, Right to Sue, Wanton, Wilful Leave a comment
Thankfully, law does not change anything and to some extent, helps to reinforce releases in Minnesota and releases for minors.
Several attempts were made this year to eliminate releases in Minnesota. The statute specifically includes recreational activities in its language. The result signed into law prevents releases from relieving liability for greater than ordinary negligence.
Even if the language is in the release the language is severable, which means it does not void the release, just the specific language.
However, the law does not change anything because greater than ordinary negligence, gross, will, wanton or intentional negligence, have never been covered by a release.
Here is the new statute.
CHAPTER 604. CIVIL LIABILITY
ACTIONS INVOLVING FAULT GENERALLY
Minn. Stat. § 604.055 (2014)
604.055 WAIVER OF LIABILITY FOR NEGLIGENT CONDUCT
Subdivision 1. Certain agreements are void and unenforceable. –An agreement between parties for a consumer service, including a recreational activity, that purports to release, limit, or waive the liability of one party for damage, injuries, or death resulting from conduct that constitutes greater than ordinary negligence is against public policy and void and unenforceable.
The agreement, or portion thereof, is severable from a release, limitation, or waiver of liability for damage, injuries, or death resulting from conduct that constitutes ordinary negligence or for risks that are inherent in a particular activity.
Subd. 2. Party or parties. –For the purposes of this section, “party” or “parties” includes a person, agent, servant, or employee of that party or parties, and includes a minor or another who is authorized to sign or accept the agreement on behalf of the minor.
Subd. 3. Other void and unenforceable agreements. –This section does not prevent a court from finding that an agreement is void and unenforceable as against public policy on other grounds or under other law.
Subd. 4. Nonapplication to certain claims. –This section does not apply to claims against the state pursuant to section 3.736 or a municipality pursuant to section 466.02.
HISTORY: 2013 c 118 s 1
The good news is the definition of a party to the release includes a “…minor or another who is authorized to sign or accept the agreement on behalf of the minor.” That adds more support to Minnesota law, which has allowed a parent to sign away a minor’s right to sue. See Minnesota decision upholds parent’s right to sign away a minor’s right to sue.
Greater interest is the rest of the definition of a party. “…accept the agreement on behalf of the minor.” Can a Scoutmaster or Little League coach who has been told by the minor’s parents you can sign stuff for my kid, release someone from liability? Legally, it seems like a stretch, but this is the best argument I’ve ever seen for such actions.
The bill appears to be a compromise from an attempt to eliminate releases totally and after the arguments, this was the result. Thank heavens!
This does one thing; it legislatively states that releases are OK. You can’t argue now, that releases are void in Minnesota for any legislative reason. And maybe someone other than a parent can sign away a minor’s right to sue.
What do you think? Leave a comment.
If you like this let your friends know or post it on FB, Twitter or LinkedIn
Copyright 2013 Recreation Law (720) Edit Law
Facebook Page: Outdoor Recreation & Adventure Travel Law
Mobile Site: http://m.recreation-law.com
By Recreation Law Recfirstname.lastname@example.org James H. Moss #Authorrank
<rel=”author” link=” https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/112453188060350225356/” />
#RecreationLaw, #Recreation-Law.com, #OutdoorLaw, #OutdoorRecreationLaw, #AdventureTravelLaw, #law, #TravelLaw, #JimMoss, #JamesHMoss, #Tourism, #AdventureTourism, #Rec-Law, #RiskManagement, #CyclingLaw, #BicyclingLaw, #FitnessLaw, #Recreation-Law.com, #Backpacking, #Hiking, #Mountaineering, #IceClimbing, #RockClimbing, #RopesCourse, #ChallengeCourse, #SummerCamp, #Camps, #YouthCamps, #Skiing, #Ski Areas, #Negligence, #Snowboarding, #RecreationLaw, #@RecreationLaw, #Cycling.Law, #SkiLaw, #Outside.Law, #Recreation.Law, #RecreationLaw.com, #OutdoorLaw, #RecreationLaw, #OutdoorRecreationLaw, #AdventureTravelLaw, #Law, #TravelLaw, #JimMoss, #JamesHMoss, #AttorneyatLaw, #Tourism, #AdventureTourism, #RecLaw, #RecLawBlog, #RecreationLawBlog, #RiskManagement, #HumanPowered, #HumanPoweredRecreation,# CyclingLaw, #BicyclingLaw, #FitnessLaw, #RecreationLaw.com, #Backpacking, #Hiking, #Mountaineering, #IceClimbing, #RockClimbing, #RopesCourse, #ChallengeCourse, #SummerCamp, #Camps, #YouthCamps, #Skiing, #Ski Areas, #Negligence, #Snowboarding, sport and recreation laws, ski law, cycling law, Colorado law, law for recreation and sport managers, bicycling and the law, cycling and the law, ski helmet law, skiers code, skiing accidents, Recreation Lawyer, Ski Lawyer, Paddlesports Lawyer, Cycling Lawyer, Recreational Lawyer, Fitness Lawyer, Rec Lawyer, Challenge Course Lawyer, Ropes Course Lawyer, Zip Line Lawyer, Rock Climbing Lawyer, Adventure Travel Lawyer, Outside Lawyer, Recreation Lawyer, Ski Lawyer, Paddlesports Lawyer, Cycling Lawyer, #RecreationalLawyer, #FitnessLawyer, #RecLawyer, #ChallengeCourseLawyer, #RopesCourseLawyer, #ZipLineLawyer, #RockClimbingLawyer, #AdventureTravelLawyer, #OutsideLawyer, Good Samaritan, Samaritan, First Aid, Minnesota, Release, Gross, Wilful, Wanton, Intentional Negligence, Negligence, Greater than Ordinary Negligence, Parent, Minor, Right to Sue,