Act Now & Stop this Minnesota bill

Minnesota Legislation is considering a bill that would eliminate releases (waivers) in Minnesota for recreational activities.

What the legislature does not understand is this bill will eliminate recreational activities in Minnesota.

Again, the Minnesota Senate and the House have introduced bills to ban releases in MN for recreational activities. Here is a copy of the Senate bill.

A bill for an act relating to civil actions; voiding a waiver of liability for ordinary negligence involving a consumer service; amending Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 604.055, subdivision 1.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 604.055, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

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 new text begin ordinary negligence or new text end 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 deleted text begin conduct that constitutes ordinary negligence or for deleted text end risks that are inherent in a particular activity.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective August 1, 2019, and applies to agreements first signed or accepted on or after that date.

Without the defenses supplied by releases in Minnesota:

  • Insurance costs will skyrocket. After OR outlawed releases some premiums jumped 2.5 times.
  • Insurance for many activities will be impossible to find.
  • Either because of the costs or the lack of premium recreation business will close.
  • The first group of recreation businesses to go will be those serving kids. They get hurt easy, and their parents sue easy.
  • Minnesota courts will back log because the only defense available will be assumption of the risk. Assumption of the risk is determined in the vast majority of cases by the jury. Consequently, it will take years to get to trial and prove the injured plaintiff assumed the risk.

Do Something

Contact your Senator and Representative and tell them you are opposed to this bill. Do it by telephone and in writing.

Find other organizations, trade associations and the like and join with them to give them more power because they have more people they represent.

Explain the bill to your friends and neighbors, so they can voice their opinion. Encourage them to do so.

Become politically aware so you know what is going on with the legislature and how to fight bills like this.

What do you think? Leave a comment.

Copyright 2018 Recreation Law (720) 334 8529

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By Recreation Law    Rec-law@recreation-law.com    James H. Moss

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I find interesting releases on the web.

Most of them I find are mine and are stolen violating my copyright. However some of them are interesting, quite interesting!

I found a release for a religious summer camp. The release had the following lines it.

I am aware of the risks…” Sure, but is your child?

In the event of injury or a medical emergency, I understand that the church’s group leader, not Student Life and camp location, will be responsible for the medical care of all attendees.” This one I just do not understand, I think I might but I’m not guessing that much in writing.

However it is this line that caught my attention.

To the extent the restriction on filing lawsuits is deemed unlawful, I agree to submit any Claims to a Christian conciliation/mediation organization for binding resolution.”

The US Constitution has been interpreted to place a barrier between church and state. There is a good reason for that. There should be a similar rule for law and the church.

To see the form click Waiver & Release.

What do you think? Leave a comment.

Copyright 2010 Recreation Law (720) Edit Law, Recreaton.Law@Gmail.com

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Releases/Waivers: The basics, the very basics!

1.    A waiver cannot be written by anyone other than an attorney. Sure you can try and write one but you are just wasting paper, or killing trees. Waivers or releases must meet the specific legal needs and requirements of your state, your activity and numerous other issues. See Releases 101.

2.    Some states require the use of “magic words” to make the waiver enforceable. Without those words you are back to killing trees. See What is a Release?.

3.    You release must make sure that the correct law and the correct location are identified so the release is valid. See States that do not Support the Use of a Release.

4.    After that the issues that require a waiver to be correct still go on. The legal terminology for who is going to be protected by the release. The correct terminology for who is going to be prevented from suing in the release is critical.

5.    At the same time, your release cannot be written in legalese in many jurisdictions.

6.    Your release must be checked every year to make sure it is up to date. Each year a judge someplace decides to tweak or in some cases totally change how state law applies to releases. If you are in the state where that occurs you MUST know and make changes. SeeStates that do not Support the Use of a Release.

7.    Are you clients under the age of 18? That is sets up more requirements for writing a release. See States that allow a parent to sign away a minor’s right to sue.

These are but seven of hundreds of issues that must be covered for a waiver to be upheld in a court of law. There is no easy checklist of items to cover. Each state is different, each activity is different. As an example there are 50 states, and several territories, with equine liability acts. No one release will work in many of the other states. Add into that mix skiing statutes, whitewater rafting statutes and you are all ready at hundreds of different requirements that must be met for different statutes. See What is a Release?.

You can’t write your own release unless you just want to waste paper.

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