How do I protect myself if I allow a person to come onto my property to cut down tree and they are injured?

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How do I protect myself if I allow a person to come onto my property to cut down tree and they are injured?

They will cut down and cut up trees, as well as cut up previously downed trees; in lieu of payment they will get the cut up trees. If I have them sign an agreement not to sue me or my homeowner’s insurance if they are injured while getting the trees? Would such an agreement really give me much protection from being sued if they are injured?

Asked on February 28, 2015 under Personal Injury, Maryland

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You can have them sign a liability waiver--that's what you call the kind of agreement you are describing-saying that they acknowledge that cutting, etc. trees can be dangerous and they accept the risks of that activity, and that as a condition of being allowed to take the cut-up trees, they agree to not sue you or assert any claims against you or your insurer. That should protect you from the normal risks of what they are doing, but will not protect you if you have allowed any unusually dangerous conditions to exist on your land and those conditions cause injuries. (For example: to get to the trees, you have to go down some stairs set in a hillside; the stairs are loose or rotting.)


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