I just came back from a print shop where I had to go and send a fax. In the window near the entrance is a sign which states:
We are not responsible for accidents or injuries.
I thought to myself, “Of course you’re not. Unless you are.”
I often wonder what makes people think that displaying these kinds of warnings releases them from all liability. Do they honestly think that having this sign frees them of responsibility for accidents and injury, even if the accident or injury is their fault? And if they don’t truly believe this, what is the purpose of the sign at all?
Of course they’re not responsible, if it’s not their fault. And they don’t need a sign in the window to make that so. But they are responsible if it is their fault, and the sign in the window doesn’t change that an iota.
So, again, why the sign?
This also reminded of an old movie theatre I used to go to when I was a kid. We had been going there for years, and my parents had even gone when they were kids. One day, as we were about to enter the theatre, we saw a sign posted at the entrance that stated:
We are not responsible for head lice.
Ew! And yes, they were, if you ask me. First of all, this sign was not posted outside the building, to give you a heads-up before paying your admission and buying your popcorn. It was on the actual door that led to the theatre. They were hiding the fact that they knew the place was infested until people had paid and their movie was about to start, banking on the probability that people would rather take a chance than demand their money back, possibly cause a scene, and spoil their plans for the day or evening.
Also, the fact that they knew about the infestation, and still remained open for business, makes them even more liable than if they hadn’t known, or posted the warning. Their own warning, which they seemed to think would release them from liability, would surely have been the nail in their coffin, had anyone decided to cause a stink.
So, to all the business owners out there: save it. We know you’re not responsible. Unless, of course, you are.