Potential plaintiffs sometimes take the risk of injury onto themselves and absolve potential defendants from any liability. Formerly, this was an affirmative defense available to defendants, but has since been subsumed by contributory and comparative negligence in most jurisdictions. see, e.g. Justice Ginsburg's dissent in Honda Motor Co. v. Oberg, 512 US 415 (1994).
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
1) An affirmative defense in a negligence case, in which the defendant claims that the situation (taking a ski-lift, climbing a steep cliff) was so inherently or obviously hazardous that the injured plaintiff must have known of the risk, but took the chance of being injured. 2) The act of contracting to take over a risk, such as buying the right to a shipment and accepting the danger that it could be damaged or prove unprofitable.
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:11 pm