If someone participates in an organized bike race or event and suffers injuries, it’s possible to sue the event coordinators in a premises liability claim. This depends on a variety of factors, many of them complicated issues that will likely warrant advice from an attorney.
Does signing a waiver exclude event coordinators from liability?
Waivers, intended to release someone from liability, are one way event coordinators attempt to protect themselves. In some circumstances Colorado law will support the release from liability. Some of this depends on the language used, which an attorney can help decipher. But if the event coordinator’s negligence (especially gross negligence) caused the injuries, it’s possible they can be liable regardless if you signed a waiver.
The basis of negligence is that the event coordinators owed a duty of care, breached it in some way, and the negligence was the direct cause of injury. But of course, the specifics of the circumstances would decide if negligence was a factor.
Do event coordinators have to provide liability insurance?
Whether you are participating in a race or a non-racing bike event, such as a charity ride, event coordinators must have liability insurance. But filing a claim with them is sometimes complicated.
There could be stipulations that a participant doesn’t fully understand. For instance, you may have to file the claim within a specific period of time, such as no later than 30 days from the date of the incident. Another requirement could be that you must have notified an official at the event the same day of getting injured.
Also, the insurance carried by the event coordinators could include a deductible. This may become your responsibility, which could be in addition to your health insurance deductible. So even if the costs for your injuries are mostly covered, it’s possible to get stuck with some of the bill.
Of course, the insurance company for the event coordinator may deny liability. In that case, you may have to pay for all the costs. This is why it’s important to seek legal advice from an attorney so you don’t end up paying for something that someone else should have covered.
How can I better understand my legal options if injured in an organized bike race/event?
Bike accident injuries are many times significant. It’s not uncommon to accumulate thousands of dollars in medical bills. That’s not counting the income lost while out of work recovering or the pain and suffering from serious injuries.
The best way to protect your rights is to seek legal counsel. An attorney will look into the specifics of your case to determine if someone else’s negligence was the cause of your injuries. If so, an attorney can explain your legal options. This may include filing a premises liability claim against the event coordinators who failed to provide reasonable, basic care to avoid accidents.
An attorney can also assist with:
- filing the paperwork;
- dealing with the insurance company; and
- gathering the evidence necessary to prove both liability and the extent of one’s injuries.
Call attorney D.J. Banovitz, himself a cyclist, to discuss your legal options if you were involved in an accident during a bike race or event in the Denver area. Contact us at 303-300-5060 or use our online contact form.