Sports Injuries in BC
Anyone who competes in sports could be at risk of sustaining injuries. Even people who play sports that do not involve much physical contact or engagement could be accidentally injured during gameplay.
Participation in many different kinds of sports and recreation in BC can cause serious injuries requiring hospitalization, surgery, physiotherapy, and dramatic changes to a person’s lifestyle. The greatest number of sports injuries throughout the province are sustained by youth and adolescents between the ages of 10-19.
Usually, anyone who participates in recreational leagues assumes the risk of injury. That means, if an individual player is hurt playing sports, the league they participate in will not necessarily be responsible for their injuries, nor will the league be liable for damages the player has incurred. However, this is not always the case.
In the 2015 case of Forestieri v. Urban Recreation Ltd., 2015 BCSC 249, the court found both the league and its activities coordinator/ marketing assistant liable for the injuries the plaintiff suffered in a slide-tackle during a soccer match. The league did not allow slide-tackling and they failed to appropriately teach and administer this rule to the players. The court determined that the failure to teach this rule to all players likely led to the injuries suffered by the plaintiff.
Injuries arising from sports incidents often depend on whether the victim assumed the risk of the aggressor’s conduct. This depends heavily on the rules and nature of the specific sport as well as the league where the incident occurred. This does not mean that you need to demonstrate that another participant in a league intended to injure you. It simply means that their conduct was outside the risks reasonably assumed by competitors. Since the plaintiff in the case mentioned above did not assume the risk of being slide-tackled, the court found that he therefore could not appropriately defend himself.
Whether or not the league or a league official is liable depends on their role in ensuring that the players are all aware of the rules. In this example, the league could not have ensured that all individual players would obey the rules during gameplay, but they could ensure that each fielded player knew that slide-tackles were not permitted.
When determining whether injured sports players are entitled to compensation for injuries that occurred during gameplay, there are certain factors to consider. These include:
- The type of sport being played (e.g., hockey inherently involves intentional application of force, badminton does not)
- The level at which the sport is being played (i.e., professional, intramural, etc.)
- The type of league hosting the sporting event
- The rules of the sport and the specific league
If you have been injured playing a sport and believe you might be entitled to compensation, schedule a free initial consultation with Preszler Injury Lawyers BC.
Contact Preszler Injury Lawyers Today
Even if you are unsure whether you might be entitled to pursue legal action, feel free to discuss your case with our British Columbia personal injury lawyers. At Preszler Injury Lawyers, all prospective clients receive a free initial consultation. To book yours, call 1-800-JUSTICE today.