Illinois court holds release signed by plaintiff enforceable

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The Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, recently addressed the issue of whether a release signed by a plaintiff before she embarked on a paid tour of Chicago precluded her from bringing a personal injury lawsuit based on injuries that she sustained during the tour.

The facts in the case, Hamer v. City Segway Tours of Chicago, LLC, No. 1-08-3371, are relatively simple. The plaintiff signed up for a tour with the defendant. During the tour, all participants rode their own Segway and, before the tour, were taught by employees of the defendant how to use the Segway. The plaintiff was injured during the tour when she fell off of the Segway, as she attempted to ride it up a small, grassy hill. She then sued, claiming that the defendant was liable for her injuries since it allowed her to ride in a dangerous location and failed to instruct her of the danger posed by that location.

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