A Bergen County injury lawyer helps victims who have been injured due to someone’s negligence. However, sometimes a lawyer can’t help a victim. Not because the lawyer doesn’t want to. Rather, it’s because the victim signed away his or her right to sue. Before he or she even met the lawyer. A recent Bergen County injury lawyer case illustrates the problem.
BERGEN COUNTY INJURY LAWYER TIP: BEWARE TRAMPOLINE PARK WAIVERS
The case involved a “trampoline park.” Such places let children of all ages play on trampolines. They often offer various other recreational activities.
However, from my experience, virtually all such businesses require participants to sign a waiver before using the facility. In the case of a minor, his or her parent must sign.
UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU CHOOSE TO SIGN
These waivers generally restrict the ability of users of the facility to sue in the event they are injured there. The waiver even may provide that no lawsuit at all is allowed. Rather, a victim may only request an arbitration. (An arbitration is an out-of-court proceeding. No judge or jury decides the case. Rather, a single arbitrator decides if the victim gets compensation. The arbitrator usually is a lawyer in private practice. Unlike in a court case, there is no general right to appeal any erroneous decision the arbitrator makes.)
And here’s the kicker: The waiver may provide that the arbitration will be held in a distant state, thousands of miles from New Jersey. This often makes the case too inconvenient for the victim to pursue. Which is just what the trampoline parks want.
At least 246,875 trampoline injuries occur annually in the U.S. Of these, 186,405 involve children under age 15.
If negligence by a trampoline park hurts you or your child, don’t lose hope, though. A good lawyer can sometimes overcome even a signed waiver. But not always. So be careful what you sign. Especially when it involves your children.
Feel free to contact my office if you have any questions about these waivers, or if you need a Bergen County injury lawyer.