Case Law Update On Exculpatory Clauses

Action against state university Athletics Association by parents of university football player who collapsed and died during football practice after participating in a series of conditioning drills. Trial court did not err in denying defendant's motion for summary judgment based on exculpatory clause of Medical Examination and Authorization Waiver signed by decedent. Exculpatory clause was ambiguous where it did not inform decedent that he would be contracting away his right to sue defendant for its own negligence, and language of clause could have led decedent to believe that defendant would be supervising his training in a non-negligent manner. Trial court erred in denying defendant's motion for partial summary judgement based on sovereign immunity. Because defendant Athletic Association functions primarily as an instrumentality of the state university, it is entitled to limited sovereign immunity. UCF Athletics Association, Inc. v. Plancher, 38 Fla. L. Weekly D1756a (Fla. 5th DCA, August 16, 2013).