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Can You Sue For An Ice Rink-related Accident?

Thinking of going for a holiday skate at Rockefeller Center or Central Park? It's likely that a lot of other people are, too. Rinks can easily get crowded; especially during the holiday season. And crowding and jostling in a bustling skating rink can lead to falls and head injuries. But if you or a loved one falls and suffers a serious head injury at a skating rink, can you sue? The answer is, it depends. 

By choosing to go ice skating, you accept a degree of risk from the normal consequences of the sport-- whether it be falling down or bumping into the sideboards or twisting an ankle. Furthermore, signing a waiver to go skating will further limit your ability to sue.

In general, it's only when the rink operators' negligence is to blame for your injury that you might be able to sue. For example, if the rink is filled with skaters beyond its stated capacity, this could constitute negligence. Similarly, if an obstacle or dangerous defect in the ice exists for long enough where the rink operators knew or should have known about it, and someone is hurt by that obstacle, this could also constitute negligence. Simply slipping and falling on the ice is not enough. If someone comes up behind you and deliberately pushes you down, however, this may be a different story. 

If you or a loved one do fall on ice, a serious head injury is possible. Obviously, ice is a slippery and very hard surface. And figure skaters don't tend to wear protective helmets, like hockey players do, so when a skater's head collides with the ice, it's the skull that absorbs the force of the impact. This can lead to dangerous swelling and bleeding that can cause brain damage. 

If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury at a skating rink or any other place, make sure to speak with an experienced attorney who can help you secure the compensation you need to recover. 

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