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Recovering Damages from Skiing and Snowboarding Accidents

Posted on November 18, 2012 by Fast Lawsuit Team

Woosh! Woosh! The pure, powdery snow is a joy to behold for snowboarding and skiing enthusiasts. There is something unreal and utterly enjoyable about gliding speedily across blaringly white snow, the cold wind in your face and your hair and the feeling of freedom and exhilaration this brings.

Sadly, though, it’s not all fun in the snow. Skiing and snowboarding accidents can be more common than you think. After all, these sports are inherently dangerous. According to statistics, more than 150,000 are seriously injured in the ski and snowboarding slopes annually. In addition, there are 40 ski or snowboarding-related deaths and about the same number disabled or paralyzed. Annual medical bills for injuries caused by skiing or snowboarding accidents have exceeded the $250 million mark.

Skiing and Snowboarding Risks

Skiing and snowboarding is about speed and stunts. As one gains proficiency in skiing or snowboarding, he would want a higher level of challenge to test his skill. Skiers and snowboarders know the risks of their sport of choice. These risks include:
-  Risk of avalanche
-  Collisions with other people in the trail or snowboarding area
-  Collisions with objects
-  Falls (especially from ski lifts)
-  Accidents caused by defective equipment
-  Accidents caused by lack of adequate signs and warnings
-  Accidents caused by inadequate instruction from the instructor

If you are lucky, you can get up from these accidents none the worse for the wear, able to brush off the snow and have another go at the slopes in an effort to redeem your wounded pride. Sometimes, you will have to deal with a twisted ankle, a bum knee or minor scrapes and bruises. In some instances, though, the accident may cause catastrophic injuries that will radically change your life. This can include severe facial or spinal cord injuries, brain damage, disablement or even death.

Most states, in recognition of the high-risk status of skiing and snowboarding, have already instituted limits that injured skiers and snowboarders can recover from their injuries. However, there are still instances where a personal injury lawsuit can be filed in an effort to claim compensation for slope hazards that are non-obvious and unmarked.

These non-obvious hazards include:
- The failure of the ski resort owner or operator to maintain the equipment
- The failure of the ski resort owner or operator to mark obstacles that you might bump into (especially if you’re going downhill)
- Faulty design of the ski or snowboarding terrain (especially if you’re going downhill)
- An instructor bringing you to a ski or snowboarding slope that is more difficult than your current ability
- Unmaintained slopes where there are rocks, dirt patches, tree branches or other debris present
- Collisions with other skiers or snowboarders who were acting in a reckless manner (in this instance, you can file the lawsuit against the skier or snowboarder who caused your injuries)
- Faulty equipment (where you can sue the one who rented the equipment out or if you bought the equipment, the manufacturer of the defective product)
- Falls from lifts, if these are caused by defective design, operator negligence or faulty maintenance

In most of the hazards stated above, the ski resort operator or owner is the one who is liable for the damages.

Compensation for a skiing or snowboarding accident personal injury lawsuit

You can file a personal injury lawsuit for your skiing or snowboarding injuries to claim compensation for:
-  Medical expenses (including future expenses) in the treatment of the injuries
-  Cost of therapy and rehabilitation
-  Other out-of-pocket expenses
-  Lost income, diminished earning capacity or job loss
-  Loss of consortium
-  Pain and suffering
-  Disability or disfigurement
-  Exemplary or punitive damages

The Complexities of a skiing or snowboarding accident personal injury lawsuit

Personal injury lawsuits covering skiing or snowboarding accidents can be complex.

“Assumption of risk defense”. The party you are suing may raise the defense that you already knew the risks involved with skiing or snowboarding yet you participated in the sport anyway.

Statute of limitations. There is also a statute of limitations where you can only file your personal injury lawsuit within a certain period of time, usually two years. After the statute of limitations has expired, you can no longer seek compensation for your injuries.

Limits for amount of compensation. Please also note that in some states have limits to noneconomic damages related to skiing or snowboarding accidents. Colorado has imposed a maximum limit of $500,000 for noneconomic damages.

Lawsuit funding. After you file a personal injury lawsuit, you can also seek for financial help via a lawsuit loan. This provides you with quick access to funds that you can use for your treatment, recovery and other concerns.

Lawsuit cash advances are provided by companies such as to help hapless victims of personal injury move on more quickly, even as they wait for their lawsuit to be settled. This kind of funding is non-recourse funding, where you are only expected to pay the money back once your lawsuit is settled.

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