Increasing Number Of Athletes Required To Sign Waivers Post-COVID

February 21, 2021

While colleges have begun to welcome back athletes for voluntary workout programs, it has been noted that two trends began to emerge. Since last June, many athletes were found to have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus in different schools and many of them were asymptomatic. 

At the same time, some schools and organizations require athletes to sign waivers before they could resume their sports activity or use campus facilities. As more schools and organizations hop onto the bandwagon, we share more on how COVID-19 and the waivers play a part in the resumption of sports activities in America.

A waiver represents a legal agreement between the school/organization and the athletes. By signing a waiver, this means that the athlete has acknowledged the risks involved and has agreed to waive off their legal rights to a lawsuit. In this case, schools and organizations have begun to require athletes to sign a waiver to acknowledge and assume all coronavirus-related risks.

In obtaining a waiver from athletes prior to resuming their sports activities, this becomes a low-cost risk mitigation strategy that schools, organizations, and sports clubs can implement to save them from lawsuits which would be very costly to defend.

How Is A Waiver Upheld?

For a waiver to be upheld, the school or organization drafting the waiver will have to ensure the following:

  • Language used in the waiver follows state laws that the school or organization is in
  • The waiver does not violate any state laws or public policy
  • The infection occurred from the risks that have already been explicitly explained in the waiver itself

If you are a school or sports organization looking to craft out a waiver, ensure that your waiver contains the following points:

  • The waiver must be clear and unambiguous
  • The waiver must be crafted in a manner which an ordinary person is able to understand it
  • The waiver section should stand out in your document. If it is long, ensure that the beginning of your document states that a waiver is included.
  • The terms of the waiver must be reasonable and fair to both parties
  • The language of the waiver includes certain terms which may be required by specific state laws (this differs from state to state).
  • The waiver must have the other party’s signature (in this case, both athlete and parental signature may be required).

How Can I Obtain A Waiver?

A waiver can either be obtained through a signed hardcopy by the involved parties prior to the activity, or it can be sent to the involved parties via an electronic waiver. Through electronic waivers, you would also be able to obtain the waivers in advance and allow the involved parties to sign them online. A link can be sent to athletes and their parent or guardian via text message or email, and they would be able to sign the waiver online through their smartphone, computer, or tablet.

If you are interested in finding out more, reach out to us at WaiverFile today to discuss further!

Disclaimer: The content on this site is not legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is established. To ensure your online consent form is legally binding based on your location, industry, and specific circumstances, consult a legal professional in your area.

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