Liability Waiver Update for Shared Residences
Ontario is opening up. But as we move into the next phase, there’s a growing demand for COVID-19 warnings, waivers, and disclaimers. Post-secondary institutions will be offering a combination of virtual and in-class instruction so student residences will be welcoming students into their facilities.
These residences are much like apartment buildings, townhouse, and condominium complexes with an enhanced focus on the interaction between the students is many areas including:
- Weight Rooms
- Spin Rooms
- Dance Studios
- Video Game Rooms
- Billiards Rooms
- Rooftop Patios
- Indoor Lounge/ TV Areas
- Outdoor Lounges
- Study Rooms
- Laundry Rooms
- Clubhouse Kitchens
- Business Centres / Computer Stations
COVID-19 has resulted in new health and legal liabilities for owners of apartment buildings and condominiums.
These risks also apply to student residences.
If steps aren’t taken to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus, there is the potential that residents will seek damages if they’re infected with the virus. That’s why you’ll want residents to sign a liability waiver before using some or all of the above features in your building.
A Proactive Protection Against Liability
Liability waivers provide businesses with proactive protection against future liability for exposure claims. Many in the service industry have included Coronavirus waivers into their contracts or have amended existing clauses to specifically include the risk of contracting the virus.
Most people are familiar with liability waivers and have signed one for a gym membership or when sending your child on a school trip. A liability waiver is a simple and cost-effective way that student residences can take to protect against potential liability for exposure claims.
Priority is Keeping Residents Safe
As an owner or condominium association, your first priority is to keep your residents safe and your best legal protection is to take steps to achieve that goal. If you provide appropriate warnings and best practices, it’s difficult to be accused of negligence.
At Hummingbird Lawyers LLP, we’ve worked with our clients to develop procedures and documentation to protect them against lawsuits. Certain places have particular risks including gyms and other workout areas and where people are dining.
We’re aware of the many steps that need to be taken to mitigate risk.
Is Covid-19 Covered Under Standard Liability Waivers?
Our liability waivers are designed to guarantee residents understand the risks associated with the above services. Some waivers already protect against liability for physical injury or illness, but there’s no legal precedent that Covid-19 would be covered under those terms. Courts require waivers to be clear and unambiguous, that’s why industries like apartments and student housing should include Coronavirus exposure as a risk factor.
An appropriate liability waiver depends on various elements. The substance of these waivers vary by industry and jurisdiction on an individual basis. With many students now under 18, there may be issues regarding signing liability waivers. We’ll discuss this with you.
Your Waiver Designed for Your Property
At Hummingbird Lawyers LLP, we’ll ensure your waiver is appropriate for your property. While Ontario is experiencing a new way of life. New legal issues arise and at Hummingbird Lawyers LLP, we’re always updating our services to meet this demand.
When it comes to your apartments and student residences, we promise to always work with you to make your real estate investment safer and just as important, to help preserve your residents’ health and your wealth.
Phone Number: 905.731.1911