Between the March Madness and the beginning of baseball season, sports are on everyone’s mind. Still, as fun as sports are to play, the risk of injury is high. However, many people want to file personal injury lawsuits when they sustain injury while playing sports. Unfortunately, the assumption of risk complicates these cases.
Assumption of Risk
Assumption of risk, or assumed risk, describes situations where you intentionally agree to an activity that you know could lead to injury. An example of this is going to the park to play a pickup game of basketball. Perhaps while playing the game, the ball bounces off the backboard and hits you in the head, causing injury. By agreeing to play basketball, you should know that you risk the ball hitting you mid-play. However, if someone stabbed you with a knife in the middle of the game, that does not count as assumed risk. That’s because knives are not an aspect of playing basketball. Injuries that could be reasonably sustained from the sport count as assumed risk.
Types of Assumed Risk
Personal injury claims consider two types of assumed risks: expressed and implicit. Expressed assumption of the risk means that you are explicitly notified of the risk of injury. This could be due to a written contract or a liability waiver. Basically, you acknowledged the risk of injury before participating. Implicit assumption of the risk means there is no formal agreement or contract. However, the risk of injury is implied. This is where sports injury lawsuits can become complicated. Even when you are just playing a game with your friends, a risk of a sports injury is always implied. An example of this is spraining your ankle while playing soccer.
Filing a Sports Injury Claim
If you sustain injury while playing a sport, ask yourself if it’s reasonable to have assumed your injury would have happened. In general, a sports injury case in New York State can be difficult to file. In fact, court decisions in recent years have expanded assumed risk to apply even to the locker room. If you are not sure if your sports injury falls outside assumed risk, you can always contact one of our experienced personal injury lawyers for a free consultation. (800) 762-9300.