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I was Injured on a Golf Course: Who’s Responsible?

male golfer

Summer is the perfect time to get in a few rounds of golf. The greens and fairways are the healthiest they’ll be all year, and the sun stays up longer than any other season. Indiana has a wide array of courses for whatever suits your style and preference, and most of your negative golf-related experiences will come from a lousy lie in the rough or a sharp hook in your drive.

But what if your misfortunes go beyond simple bad luck with the ball? What if you’re outright injured on a course you thought was otherwise safe? Not only is your day ruined, but now you’re potentially facing medical expenses and long-lasting effects from an incident that could have been prevented.

Who is responsible for your injury? The answer lies in the difference between personal liability and premises liability.

Personal Liability vs. Premises Liability

golf balls in basket

When you set foot on a course, you, as the invitee, accept a measure of risk aligned with the level of activity occurring on the premises.

Just like baseball spectators can’t hold a stadium owner accountable for an errant foul ball striking them (since baseballs unpredictably leaving the field of play are a common occurrence), neither can you hold the course manager responsible if someone also using the course hits you with a golf ball, either accidentally or on purpose.

This is the key difference between personal liability and premises liability.

Personal liability comes about between two parties: the injured and the injurer (or you and the person who hit you with the golf ball).

Premises liabilities stem from an injured person experiencing harm because the owner of a piece of property did not reasonably do enough to prevent an injury from occurring.

So then, how a premises liability case on a golf course come about?

Injuries from Possessor Negligence

spilled golf balls

A golf course owner has to account for the inherent hazards of continuing to operate their course. Any area featuring small projectiles flying several hundred yards at a quick clip will carry a certain level of danger that a manager must address

Golf course owners should inspect and repair their golf carts on a regular basis, set up proper netting on driving ranges to prevent errant balls either from injuring other patrons of the range or players on a hole nearby the range, and address potentially hazardous slip-and-fall situations on the course and in the clubhouse.

The linchpin of any premises liability case is negligence, and if your injury stems from a situation or hazard that owner and managers had ample notice of, yet did nothing or too little to address, you may have a premises liability case on your hands.

Help from an Indiana Premises Liability Lawyer

A round of 18 in the middle of a Hoosier summer should be a highlight of your season. If either you or someone you know was injured because of the negligence of golf course owners, Hensley Legal Group may be able to help. Call us today or contact us online for a free conversation about your claim. Our Indiana premises liability lawyers are here to help.