“Hitting” the Slopes

I was thumbing through a list of notable cases recently and thought I’d share one that may be of interest in light of the approaching ski season.

In Horvath v. Ish, a female skier, Horvath, was struck by a fourteen-year-old male, Ish, who was snowboarding.  The result of the crash caused the Horvath to suffer serious permanent injuries.

Due to the permanent injuries Horvath suffered, she filed a lawsuit against Ish and his parents based in negligence.  Typically, unless there is intentional conduct, most injuries that result from inherently dangerous activities (little league football, baseball, etc…) are not compensable through litigation because of the Assumption of the Risk Doctrine.

In the Common Pleas court, Ish argued just that, Horvath assumed the risk of injury by participating in a dangerous activity.  The trial court agreed and granted Ish’s Motion for Summary Judgment.  Horvath appealed the decision to the Ninth District Court of Appeals.

Whether or not skiers owe one another a legal duty of reasonable care while skiing was a matter of first impression for Ohio courts.  On this point, the Ninth District held, Ish owed a duty to Horvath to refrain from colliding with her and remanded the case back to the trial court.

With this in mind, be certain to keep your eyes out for other skiers and take reasonable precautions to avoid collisions while you’re on the slopes!

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