Horses are often thought of as gentle giants, and many people living in New York take pleasure in riding them. Even the most well-trained horses can be unpredictable, though, and there is an inherent risk in horseback riding. As such, a person that suffers harm while riding a horse may have difficulty proving that their harm is compensable. Recently, a New York court issued an opinion discussing the assumption of the risks that accompany riding horses in a case in which the defendant argued it could not be deemed responsible for the plaintiff’s harm. If you were hurt while engaging in a recreational activity, it is in your best interest to speak to a Syracuse personal injury lawyer regarding what damages you may be owed.
The Plaintiff’s Harm
Allegedly, the plaintiff visited the defendant ranch to go on a horseback ride. Prior to the ride, she signed numerous documents, including an assumption of risk form. She subsequently embarked on two rides. On her second ride, a wrangler horse from another group became loose. The wrangler horse bumped the plaintiff’s horse and pulled the plaintiff’s reins from her hands. She held onto the saddle, but as the horse began to run, she fell, suffering a broken rib and arm and a contusion to her hip.
It is reported that the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the defendant in which she argued that the failure to warn her of the risk of a stampede or to prevent or mitigate the stampede constituted negligence. The defendant moved for the dismissal of the plaintiff’s claims through summary judgment, arguing that she assumed the risk of harm. Continue reading