My child was injured at a trampoline park. What are my rights?
Author: Attorney Jason Macri
The amount of trampoline parks that are opening across the United States is on the rise. Currently, there are well over 500 trampoline parks open for business in the US and over 30 trampoline parks in the State of Florida. This number is in sharp contrast to the approximately 40 trampoline parks that existed in the US in 2011. There is no indication that the opening of new parks will slow in the near future therefore, one can expect the amount of trampoline parks to continue to rise. As the amount of trampoline parks explodes, so does the amount of children being injured at these parks.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), nearly 100,000 trampoline-related injuries occur each year in the United States. Many of these injuries involve serious fractures to all parts of the body including the spine. This is mostly due to the fact that the trampolines at many of these parks are able to propel users far beyond what the user may be used to when using a home or backyard trampoline. As the amount of trampoline parks expands, so does the square footage of the typical trampoline park, thus increasing the size of the typical trampoline found within a park. Larger trampolines are typically able to propel users farther and at a higher velocity than the smaller trampolines, increasing the potential for injury.
Most trampoline parks in the State of Florida will require that the parents of a child sign a release before the child would be allowed entry into the park. The release will typically indicate that there is an “inherent risk” associated with use of the park’s facilities and will require the child’s parents to sign a waiver indicating that the parents are allowing their child to engage in a “potentially dangerous activity” that may cause serious injury or even death to the child. The waiver will typically indicate that the parent is giving up their right as well as the child’s right to recover from the park in a lawsuit for personal injury. While this type of waiver may seem to be effective in preventing the parent and child from making an injury claim, this may not be the case. Every release is different and hypothetically, if the release does not fully comply with the applicable Florida Statute, it may not be effective. Also, even if the release does comply with the requirements under the Florida Statutes, it may not fully limit an injury claim made on behalf of the child.
If your child has been injured at a trampoline park or similar facility, it is imperative to consult an experienced personal injury lawyer right away. Your lawyer will interpret any applicable release to inform you of your rights, including your ability to seek compensation for injury.