Release of Liability (Waiver Form)

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Release of Liability Form or Waiver of Liability Agreement is a legal document between two parties — the releasor or person promising not to sue — and the releasee or person or company who is potentially liable. By signing this form, the releasor acknowledges that he or she understands the risks and claims involved and agrees to not sue the Releasee for past or future injuries or damages.

This form is alternatively used when an accident like a car wreck or property damage has already occurred. Instead of going through an expensive lawsuit, both parties agree to settle the dispute out of court.

A simple release of liability form will identify the following basic elements:

  • Releasor: person who promises not to sue or take any legal action against the owner or organizer of the event or activity being attended
  • Releasee: owner or organizer of the event or activity who is at risk of being sued
  • Effective Date: when the agreement shall take effect
  • Event: description of event, activity, or circumstances being held
  • Consideration: the amount of money, promised (in)action, or something of legal value given in return for signing the document
  • Governing Law: any disagreements will be resolved using the laws of one state

As a reference, people call this document by other names:

  • Conditional and Unconditional Waiver Form
  • General Waiver
  • Legal Release
  • Liability Waiver Form
  • Waiver of Liability Agreement
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The 6 Types of Release of Liability Forms

A release or waiver is often needed either before or after an incident occurs. Organizations or people may be concerned about being taken to court by someone who accidentally gets injured while attending an event or activity they will be sponsoring. Alternatively, this form is used when an accident like a car wreck or property damage has already occurred. Instead of going through an expensive lawsuit, both parties agree to settle the dispute out of court.

Check out the 6 different types of release of liability waiver templates below, and download the one that applies to your situation.

Release of Liability Form When Selling a Car

A liability waiver can be a much cheaper option by settling out of court for things like car accidents.

Depending on the state you live in, you may need a waiver of liability when selling your car. When you sell your car, until the title and registration is transferred you are liable for any accidents or injuries caused by the buyer. Therefore, most states require you to notify them within a certain amount of days after selling your car.

To ensure their liability is waived, residents of California who sell their car are required to fill out a Notice of Transfer and Release of Liability Form. The Department of Transportation in Idaho requires its residents to fill out a Notice of Release of Liability. Find out if your state requires a waiver form to sell your car.

Consequences of Not Using a Waiver

Court fees can be high and also avoided by using a Liability Form.

What happens if you don’t use this form?

Without a written waiver, everyone faces the possibility of being summoned to court or dragging out a disagreement over who owes what.

Here are just a few of the possible consequences that this form can prevent:

 

Releasor Releasee
Lost Time 

  • extended argument involving attorneys in the courtroom instead of a fast settlement
Lost Time 

  • time spent fighting legal battles instead of building business
Lost Money 

  • unpaid medical bills or cost to fix the property damage
Lost Money 

  • legal fees to defend lawsuits and pay for damages caused
Mental Anguish 

  • prolonged problem hanging over your head
Mental Anguish 

  • fear of organizing another event in the future

 

The Most Common Liability Situations

Why put yourself at risk when you can utilize a release of liability form instead?

These are some of the most common situations in which a waiver form may be used:

Releasor Releasee
General Release General Release
  • Employee
  • Employer
  • Vendor or supplier
  • Business owner
Mutual Release Mutual Release
  • Business partner
  • Business partner
  • Buyer in a voided contract
  • Seller in a voided contract
Car Accident Car Accident
  • Driver or Passenger in a Car Accident
  • Driver or Passenger in a Car Accident
Damage to Property Damage to Property
Client Service Provider
  • Damaged living room
  • Construction company
  • Yard destroyed
  • Landscaping business
Event or Activity Event or Activity
Participants Event Organizer
  • Marathon runner
  • Marathon sponsor
  • BASE jumper
  • BASE jumping venue
  • Chili pepper enthusiast
  • Chili pepper contest
  • Avid bull runner
  • Bull run organizer
Extreme Sports Enthusiast Extreme Sports Business
  • First time skydiver
  • Skydiving company
  • Recreational bungee jumper
  • Bungee jumping business
  • Amateur rock climber
  • Rock climbing gym
  • Snowboarder or skier
  • Ski & snowboard rental
  • Paintball participant
  • Paintball facility
  • Wingsuit Flying
  • Wingsuit instruction facilities
  • Heli-Skier
  • Heli-Ski operator
  • Scuba diver
  • Scuba diving operation
Volunteer Nonprofit
Personal Injury Personal Injury
  • Dog bite victim
  • Dog owner
  • Customer who slipped in a store
  • Store owner

 

What Should be Included?

A liability form is an easy form to complete that can save you from expensive court fees.

A simple release of liability form should generally address the following basics:

  • Who promises to not pursue any legal action against another party
  • What amount of money or action (including being able to participate in the activity) will be given in exchange for the promise
  • When the document takes effect, usually before the activity occurs
  • How neither party admits they acted wrongfully by signing the Waiver

A liability form may also include one of these additional provisions:

  • Assumption of Risk: the participant understands that the activities are inherently hazardous and dangerous yet agree to assume the risk of being injured or harmed
  • Insurance: the individual is responsible for their own medical, health, or life insurance
  • Medical Treatment: the person will not sue even if they are further injured by any medical treatment given during an emergency at the event
  • Modifications: any changes to the document must be in writing
  • No Admission: signing the document does not mean either party admits wrongdoing
  • Parent or Guardian Signature: a minor under the age of 18 is legally unable to sign a contract, and should have a parent or guardian co-sign the agreement (although in certain states, a parent or guardian cannot waive a minor’s legal rights to sue for negligence)
  • Photographic Release: the participant agrees that images or recordings can be used in connection with the event attended
  • Right to Attorney: everyone understands that they have the chance to consult with an attorney about the document and are otherwise signing it voluntarily
  • Severable: the rest of the document is valid even if one part of the agreement is not
  • Witness or Notary: the signature of a third person who acknowledges the form was truly signed by both parties is optional

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