Snowboarding is an activity that attracts a particular type of individual. Those who enjoy the sport know that it presents a certain level of risk and that all the safety gear, training, and experience in the world can’t prevent all accidents. With ample snowboarding and ski resorts in New York State, many unfortunate accidents occur on the slopes each year. The National Ski Areas Association reports that about 41 skiers and snowboarders die in accidents yearly, with untold numbers of others injured. For many who suffer injuries or death, the legal doctrine of assumption of risk will make recovering any compensation difficult, if not impossible. Whether you are visiting Windham Mountain, Thunder Ridge, or any of the many resorts near Long Island, safety is always important. And when you are injured due to the negligence of another party, you may be entitled to compensation. Please keep reading as our snowboard accident lawyer explains.
Explaining Assumption of Risk
General principles of negligence hold that if you suffer harm while lawfully present on another’s property, you may have a claim for damages to bring against the property owner. Your claim could succeed if the owner failed to take reasonable steps to ensure your safety, and an experienced snowboard accident lawyer can help you navigate that process.
Such reasonable steps might include the following:
- Warning you of a dangerous situation or hazard
- Restricting access to areas where dangers exist
- Inspecting their property to discover new hazardous conditions
Snowboarding is an inherently risky pastime. There are many ways snowboarders can sustain injuries on the slopes, such as:
- Colliding with trees and other fixed objects
- Falling down an unmarked cliff or drop-off
- Running into other snowboarders
The doctrine of assumption of risk says when you engage in snowboarding or any other known risky activity, you accept the risk that you may suffer harm. In other words, if you end up with an injury, no one else can be held legally responsible, and you can’t seek compensation for your injuries from other parties. Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our dedicated Long Island snowboard accident lawyer to determine if your case is eligible.
Assumption of Risk May Not Apply in All Circumstances
The assumption of risk doctrine doesn’t protect all potentially liable parties from a lawsuit. If you didn’t fully understand the risks of snowboarding and no one explained them to you before you hit the slopes, the guideline may not apply.
The doctrine also doesn’t apply if the ski slope operator negligently, intentionally, or recklessly caused your accident. For example, if an employee deliberately switched trail signs to label a difficult trail as an easy path, the assumption of risk doctrine wouldn’t stand, and you could pursue a compensation claim. In this situation, the court may reduce your compensation in proportion to your degree of fault.
You might also recover compensation if you didn’t voluntarily assume the risk by engaging in the activity freely. The ski slope operator has the legal obligation to show that it was your conscious decision to snowboard for the doctrine to apply and shield the operator from a suit.
Consult a Snowboard Accident Lawyer in New York for Additional Guidance
It’s sometimes unclear when the assumption of risk doctrine applies and when it doesn’t. It’s, therefore, always advisable to check with a knowledgeable and experienced snowboard accident lawyer about your legal rights.
The experienced Long Island injury lawyers at Matera Law Firm provide free consultations where we will explore the facts of your situation with you and provide you with an accurate analysis of your legal options.
Contact us today to schedule a complimentary, no-obligation case evaluation if you or a loved one has suffered harm in a snowboarding accident in New York.