Ride-Along Release

by Nick Gromicko 
Many inspectors agree to mentor inexperienced inspectors who want to accompany them or ride along on appointments to learn the ropes.  InterNACHI encourages this, as it instills practical skills and best practices in the next generation representing the home inspection industry. 
But this onsite education shouldn't come at an unintended cost for the home inspector, especially in a job that's fraught with built-in risks of injury and mishaps.  Something could go wrong because of the ride-along's lack of experience, or it could be the result of some issue with the property.  Whatever the cause, the inspector shouldn't have to worry about being sued just because he agreed to extend this courtesy.  That's why we've developed a Release from Liability form that inspectors can use to avoid any legal blowback, should something happen to the newbie on an inspection.
Copy and past the text below, or download the MS Word document or PDF that follows, and make sure your ride-along signs it before you set out for the appointment.  



In consideration of his willingness to allow me to accompany him and observe him conduct one or more home inspections, I forever release ____________ from any liability on any claims of any kind whatsoever in any way arising out of my activities with him.  I intend this release to be the broadest possible release allowed by law.  It includes, but is not limited to, strict liability claims, contract claims (express or implied), warranty claims, and tort claims, whether based on common law or any statute or regulation.  It also includes, but is not limited to, any and all claims for injuries or damages sustained by me during or in connection with such activities, and which are alleged to have been sustained, in whole or in part, as a result of ___________’s negligence of one or more other persons protected by this release.

I understand that home inspections, by their very nature, involve physical activity and some element of danger.  Consequently, some risk of injury is always present.  By seeking to accompany and observe ____________, I knowingly assume this risk.  To minimize the risk to myself, I agree to follow his instructions at all times and to immediately notify him in writing of any injury.

I represent that I am in good health and that I do not have any physical or mental conditions that might affect my ability to accompany and observe ______________.

I agree never to sue _____________ or any person protected by this release for any claimed injuries or damages arising out of my activities with him, but if I do, the exclusive venue will be in the county in which ______________ resides.  If he prevails in any such action, I will pay his attorney’s fees, expenses, and court costs.

If a court finds any part of this release invalid, it shall modify the release for the benefit of ________________ to the maximum extent allowed by law.

This release shall be binding on all my heirs, agents, assignees, and on any other person(s) who might otherwise be entitled to file suit on my behalf.  This release applies to all owners, directors, and officers of _________________.



Signature                                                           (Date)



 Release for a Person to Accompany Home Inspector.doc 
 Release for a Person to Accompany Home Inspector.pdf 
The Ultimate Ride-Along
InterNACHI's free, online "Safe Practices for the Home Inspector" course
Avoiding Lawsuits
The Duty to Warn:  A Home Inspector's and Home Seller's Guide to Immediate Hazards
To Exceed or Not to Exceed:  That Is the Question
InterNACHI's Code of Ethics

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