Is a Liability Waiver or Release as to a Child’s Injury Valid in Florida?

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Is a Liability Waiver or Release as to a Child’s Injury Valid in Florida? Under recent Florida case law, these type of waivers or releases have been deemed invalid and against the public policy of the State of Florida. If possible, parents and guardians should not sign these waivers or releases. However, commercial enterprises often times will not allow a child to participate if the waiver or release is not signed. The signed waiver or release does not grant the commercial enterprise or business immunity in any manner in the State of Florida. In Applegate v. Cable Water Ski, a 5 year old was injured while being pulled on a wakeboard. The parents signed a waiver prior to the injury. A lawsuit was filed and the water ski company tried to run away from liability by presenting the signed waiver or release. The Fifth District Court of Appeal rules that such waivers and releases were invalid. The Court notes that non-profit organizations like charities and schools may be subject to different rulings than commercial enterprises. If you signed a waiver or release at Pump It Up or some other commercial enterprise or business, your child’s rights are still intact. Do not be fooled or misled by the self serving forms that are written for the so called protection of these businesses. If you have any questions about a child injury, it is helpful to contact an experienced Florida child injury lawyer to review waivers, releases, the facts of the case, and your child’s rights.