Is a Waiver of Liability a Legal Document?
Updated On January 13, 2023 | by Alex Jones
Liability waiver forms vary but they are mostly used to avoid potential lawsuits. Companies can use such a document to protect themselves from various legal problems that may arise at the time the customers use the services or goods supplied by the company. Clients also sign a completed form before various events and business trips. It is important to understand what this document is and whether it has legal force. There are different samples of disclaimer forms. However, they are all drafted taking into account the activities of the company.
What the Waiver of Liability is and What Its Intended Purposes Are
So, let us talk about this document in more detail. This is a special agreement that is legally binding for the parties that sign it. It is used to confirm that each of the parties is informed about the possible risks that are associated with certain goods, services, or other activities of the company. Having signed such a document, the client waives his/her right to take legal action against the company should any circumstances where the client suffers an injury or incurs damages or losses. This way the company relieves itself of responsibility for injuries or damages suffered by its client and employees.
As a rule, such agreements are signed by companies that have activities that involve risks. There can be many examples, including horseback riding lessons, skydiving, and others. Clients fill out a release of liability form and sign it before they proceed with risky activities. The forms may be different and vary depending on the specific activity of the company, the company’s legal status, and many other factors. This is the reason why it should be handled by the legal department. There are basic criteria that are specified in the agreement:
- Warning. Parties of the document should familiarize themselves with the reasons why it is important. This part is usually at the top of the document and its text is hard to miss. Initially, the client reads it and then moves on to the rest of the paragraphs.
- Risks. The company should describe in detail the risks associated with its activity and/or products or services. It is very important to describe all the nuances so that the client has no doubts.
- Risk acceptance. This point is related to the fact that the party that signs the contract is fully aware of and accepts the risks that may arise during certain activities or using the services and/or products provided by the company. It is important to emphasize that the client should make this decision voluntarily and consciously based on the information received.
- Release clause. This is a clause where all statements should be made very clear. It claims that the company is not liable for any harm or loss. This part is the most important part of such documents.
In the end, there must be space for the date, place, and signatures of both parties. The client should have enough time to read and understand each clause and voluntarily sign the contract. It can be very difficult to challenge such a document in a court of law. In many countries, judges have a skeptical attitude toward such cases. A person knowingly signs a document and then goes to court for damages. It seems strange and irresponsible. If a client signs a contract, he or she accepts all risks accordingly.
Drafting with Waiver Software
If you have no experience with these types of documents, you can use different methods, for example, Adobe Acrobat Sign software. It is used to apply electronic signatures. Once clients receive the release from liability template, they can sign it remotely. This is a great way that is widely used in business today. You can sign a document in just one click, regardless of where you are located.
Before signing such a document, it is important to read its contents carefully. The contract has legal force, so the client should understand and accept the possible risks. Usually, the disclaimer form is drawn up by lawyers, taking into account the activities of the company. It is advisable to contact local professional lawyers to draw up a correct contract.