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Tina
Tina, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 8775
Experience:  JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
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We belong to a Harley Davidson Motorcycle Club in

Customer Question

Hello! We belong to a Harley Davidson Motorcycle Club in California. My husband serves on the Board of Directors. We are a small club - 106 members. A few individuals would like to make a decision to allow guests to ride along wth us on our weekly rides. The guests would sign a waiver. Our current By-Laws read "Harley's Only" but the Board would like to open up weekly rides to all guests no matter what type of bike they own. Some guests ride three wheel trikes which in the state of California does not require a motorcycle license. We are concerned about liability even thought the "guest" has signed a waiver. We have D and O insurance at three million max. We are concerned if a guest rider injures him/herself or another member of the club and the injuries are fatal or loss of quality of life the Board Members could be sued for making a decision that has "gone awry." Three million seems like a small amount when one has quality of life lost due to an accident. We are also concerned not knowing the guest's skill level as some of the rides are for more advanced riders and on windy roads. If an accident occurs can they also sue the Club/Board for failure to inform the guest of the nature of the ride, etc. Also, can a member who is seriously hurt sue the Board for a decision that has "gone awry" in court if they are hurt as well?
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Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Good afternoon Becky,

I'm Doug, and I'm sorry to hear of the confusion. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. I've ridden Harleys for many years and was a member of the Savannah, GA chapter of the Club. I have also been a CA licensed attorney for more than 30 years.

This seems like a very crucial matter for you, and your questions and issues suggest that an in-depth conversation might best suit your needs. If you are interested, for a very nominal charge I can offer you a personal phone conference as opposed to continuing in this question and answer thread which is searchable and viewable by the public.

Let me know if you don't want a call and I will be happy continue here with an answer for you.

Either way, whether I call you or not, in order to give you a clear and concise answer, I will need some additional information about the circumstances, please.

1. Why do you think that your liability will be any greater having "guests" go along for the rides as opposed to having only regular members?

2. What specifically does the club do that might be found to be negligent, thereby resulting in a lawsuit?

3. Does the club require their members to have insurance, and does the club verify that insurance?

Thanks in advance,

Doug

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi Doug. Thanks. At this time the club does not verify if members or guests have motorcycle insurance. The main concern is our By-Laws for the State of California state we are a Harley's only club, even for guests, however we are concerned if "other" bikes are allowed to ride with us, and we are not familiar with their skill level and a major accident occurs, the Board members can be sued for making a decision that would seem not conducent with the By-Laws or members who currently belong to the club. We do not request proof of a motorcycle license at this time either to be a member, and we do not ask that of guest riders as well.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
We do have guests sign "waivers" before they ride with us. But we have been advised a waiver may not hold up in a court of law if it has been deemed or agruged that the Board made a decision to allow guest riders and the decision has "gone awry."
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Hi,

You asked for a call. I can decrease the cost some. You will need to accept the call offer before I can can call you.

Doug

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Sorry...I didn't request the call...if I clicked the wrong button I apologize. Not sure how Becky came up in the name column but my name is Lisa
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Hi Lisa,

Well, Becky seems to be the name used when this username was first established.

What specifically do you want to know?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Ok...well thank you for your time. I am sorry you could not help me but I appreciate you trying. Kind regards, Lisa

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