Skiing is one of the most dangerous sports in the world. Research has found that approximately 600,000 people are injured every year while skiing and snowboarding in the United States. According to the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), in 2012, there were 54 skiing and snowboarding deaths at ski areas within the country, where there was a total of 51 million ski visits. It is estimated that there are about 2 injuries that occur in every 1,000 skier visits.
If you get injured at a ski resort, how the injury occurred is what your legal rights depend on. If your injury occurred while skiing or snowboarding and you believe that another skier or snowboarder caused the injury, you may have the right to file a lawsuit against them for negligence or recklessness. However, if you were injured while you were skiing or snowboarding, or even while you were just standing on a ski trail, and you think that it was the ski resort’s fault, your legal rights are limited.
Ski Resort Immunity and Inherent Skiing Risk
There are laws in most states that have thriving ski industries. These laws prevent a skier or snowboarder from filing a lawsuit against a ski resort for when the accident occurs from the inherent risks of skiing. The law is different in every state but the inherent risks of skiing are defined by a number of these laws as the “reasonably necessary, expected and obvious” aspects of skiing.
This law is reinstated to protect ski resorts from most negligence claims. It is usually necessary to prove negligence in personal injury lawsuits.
The legal decisions and laws usually define the necessary or integral aspects of skiing like:
- A skier failing to ski within their ability
- Collisions before skiers
- Skiing outside a designated area
- How the trails are laid out in the ski resort
- If the ski resort groomed the trails, and how they did so
In states with a ski resort immunity law, the resort cannot be held liable for injuries by a skier or who has suffered physical injury or other losses by what is considered by the courts or the law as an “inherent risk of skiing.”
Furthermore, some states have ski laws that specifically describe the things that a ski resort is supposed to do – for instance, posting signs on ski trails. In such cases despite your belief that you were injured because there was no signage, you will not be able to sue the resort for not having a signage as long as it is complies with the law.
However, the laws in each state are different, so you should talk to a personal injury lawyer and discuss the details of your ski accident. The injury you sustained can be evaluated and they can determine how the ski laws in your state affect the claim you may have against the ski area.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a ski accident, you should seek the help of the sagacious and reliable personal injury lawyers at RMFW Law Firm at 212 697 9280.
The first consultation is free. You pay us nothing up front. In fact, because we only take a percentage of the final verdict or the settlement, you really never pay us at all. You never write us a check. We are only paid when you are paid. Do you have a viable case? Give us a call so we can meet and discuss this. Do you want your voice legally heard? What do you have to say? What is your side of the story?
We know how to win cases! RMFW Law does it all the time.