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Outlaw / Private Fields Playing paintball in your backyard or other non-business run field

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Old 03-14-2011, 03:06 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quite honestly the idea of getting sued for playing a game is scary. In reality it is no different than having some buddies over to play basketball, or some other sport on your property. If they get hurt they can sue.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:26 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Lohman446 View Post
Does their insurance protect you?
I'm no expert and all of the following is just my opinion - but Im thinking that in the event of a injury by a player on an insured field:

If the player has good health care insurance they will likely make a claim for the medial expenses w/ their personal insurance provider. Ive heard of fields offering a few bucks towards these costs to help the player forgive the incident.

If the player feels they were injured as a result of regligence and/or has no personal cover is where things get sticky. IMO, this is why fields carry liability coverage. The field's insurance provider will make assessment if the field was liable - and if so, they may make an settlement offer to the player - or they may just let it play out and see what happens. Insurance adjusters are hired to minimize payouts - and they are calculating the odds of whether the player will file suit vs the players level of determination vs the amount of the claim vs the level of liability/negligence of the field vs the cost to defend the case vs what the field pays in premiums vs how long that field has been paying those premiums vs are there third parties who can assume the blame.

Furthermore, if the field's insurance provider refuses to settle, then you, the shooter, may be named in the suit by the injured party.

Furthermore, in the event that the field's insurance provider settles or goes to court, they may come after you to try to offset their losses.

So lohman - to answer your question: IMO, yes, no and oh hell no.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:50 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Bear : If that kid gets hurt bad, you know mama is gonna lawyer up quick and in a hurry, (and/or her insurance company is gonna lawyer up..) and those lawyers will go after everyone they can think of: The field, the field owner, the field manager, the field refs, the goggle manufacturer and the shooter. I wouldn't count on the fields waiver or insurance (if any) to cover you in any way.
What's absolutely true is that you will be a defendant in the lawsuit. But what will happen is the Judge or the Jury will assign liability. When he looks at you, a player at a commercial field, you're not going to owe any money. The field owner will likely eat the cost... In that situation, anyway.

But you will suffer the huge inconvenience of having to attend court dates and lawyer up yourself.

What's actually unfortunate is that if the insurance won't cover the injury, and the owner gets stuck with something too expensive, then he'll just close his LLC and the victim will be left high and dry.

What can we learn from this? DO GOOD BUSINESS. As a customer, don't play somewhere where the equipment or field is dangerous. Because that's good business as a consumer. Let the owner know why you won't play there if you have a chance.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:54 AM   #14 (permalink)
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What if the field owner says that you were playing "aggressively" all day and the refs back him up? What if that overshooting rule you broke that is hidden in the waiver is pointed to as part of the cause of injury? What if you were closer than the fifteen feet that the manufacturer of the equipment recommends?

Does insurance protect the landowner? Yeh. But the dirty secret of insurance is when I was buying insurance I was looking to protect myself, not the players.

I think renegade influences the landowner a whole lot more than any player. The player is probably not protected much better at a commercial field anyways.
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Last edited by Lohman446; 03-25-2011 at 10:01 AM.
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Old 03-25-2011, 02:26 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I asked my Lawyer to create a waiver (back when I had a business of my own) that he would be able to use in court because he would be the one defending me. His reply was to the effect of - It wont make any difference, someone could slip on a pencil and sue you. we are lawyers, its our job to sue people-. Also, Lohman446 is right on the money, insurance protects the insurance company and its paying clients. Not the player.
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Old 03-31-2011, 08:56 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I took "Business Law" in college and the class was about three things, hiding income from the government, pretending you had more income than you really did so someone would buy your stock and reducing liability. My business law professor used to own a bar (probably as a tax write off) and he said at the time Pennsylvania didn't require bars to carry liability insurance for drunk driving cases. Most bars carried insurance anyway because a lawsuit would guarantee the end of your average restauranteur’s career. My professor however decided he wouldn't get insurance because he knew as a lawyer that lawyers always look for the deepest pockets. He claimed that he got numerous phone calls from lawyers who would ask if he had “Dram Shop Insurance”. When he said no they would just hang up on him. If someone went to three bars, got tanked and wreaked their car, they wouldn't sue the last bar they went to for over-serving them, they would sue the bar with the best insurance.

So for paintball I imagine a lawyer would sue in this order; Manufacturers, field owners, land owners, and finally individual players. Manufacturers have better lawyers and its really hard to prove fault, field owners have insurance (hopefully) and landowners have land as collateral. Suing individual players would only be successful if they can afford to pay.

I have definitely been to fields that violated the terms of their liability policies. I just went to an indoor field in Pittsburgh and they didn't chrono our guns and let us play without a ref.

My real question is why paintball is singled out when there are so many more serious injuries in other sports? I don't need to have special insurance to play baseball or basketball in my back yard even though either sport has more potential for serious injury than paintball. I've been KO'd by an elbow in basketball and a line drive in baseball, but I've never been knocked unconscious in paintball.

I think part of our litigious society has to do with the cost of medical care. That being said...

Quote:
Originally Posted by PAINTBALL GUY 3 View Post
Now, up here in the great white north, things may be alttle different. If someone gets hurt, that should be covered by Health care right? (Chime in here my fellow Cunucks)
You lousy Canadians and your Universal Healthcare. I'll never understand why you and every single industrialized country on the planet other than the USA think it's a good idea to spread healthcare costs across the entire population. You should just lose your coverage and go bankrupt like we do down here.
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Old 04-01-2011, 08:04 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I think that paintball being singled out is being singled out in the minds of the players. If we are playing tag in my backyard and someone breaks a leg in a gopher hole (or whatever) I could be sued. There is a case where a family who let someone hunt on their land was sued because he injured himself, etc.

I think there is more concern about being sued than historic suits with large verdicts in paintball. And basketball or baseball my homeowners policy would cover btw. I am not certain about paintball.
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