1. Agreement to Participate. I, the above named Participant, agree on my own behalf, or if the above named Participant is a minor then I, as parent or legal guardian of said Participant, give my permission for said Participant, to participate in one or more on-site or off-site programs, activities or events (“Services”) offered by The Rancho Milagro Foundation, an Arizona nonprofit corporation (“Ranch Milagro”), all in accordance with and subject to the terms and conditions set forth in this agreement. This agreement shall apply to any and all Services in which the Participant participates, whether specifically noted above or not and whether now or in the future, and it shall remain in force until cancelled by either party by written notice to the other party. The Services are offered in accordance with the standard fee schedule in effect from time-to-time.
2. Participant Release, Waiver of Rights (Including for Claims of Negligence), Assumption of Risks and Indemnity Agreement. I understand that the programs, activities and events offered by Rancho Milagro may be inherently dangerous and may cause physical harm or even death, all as further described below. Accordingly, and in consideration of my receipt of said Services, I hereby voluntarily release, forever discharge, and agree to indemnify and hold harmless Rancho Milagro from any and all claims, liability, demands, or causes of action, that I may now or later have and are in any way connected with my participation in said Services or my use of Rancho Milagro’s equipment or facilities, including any such Claims that allege negligent acts or omissions of Rancho Milagro; further, I expressly accept and agree to assume all risks associated with my participation in the Services, which participation is completely voluntary and in which I elect to participate in spite of the risks (with all of the foregoing being referred to in this agreement as “My Waiver”). My Waiver is on behalf of myself and my spouse (if any), children (if any), parents (if any are living), heirs, assigns, personal representatives, and estate. My Waiver is for the benefit of Rancho Milagro as well as its directors, officers, organizers, affiliates, agents, employees, independent contractors, volunteers, sponsors, donors, suppliers, joint providers of Services, successors and assigns and owners of property upon which the Services take place (each a “Released Party” and collectively the “Released Parties”). Notwithstanding anything in the foregoing to the contrary, this agreement does not release or waive a Released Party’s liability or assume the risk of or indemnify a Released Party from grossly negligent, willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions of said Released Party.
3. Applicability of Arizona Law. I have reviewed and read Arizona Revised Statutes (A.R.S.) Section 12-553 (as set forth below) and related statutes I deemed necessary, and I understand that said statutes limit my rights; I also understand that this agreement further limits my rights and creates duties upon me exceeding the provisions of said statutes. Arizona Revised Statutes Section 12-553. Limited liability of equine owners and owners of equine facilities; exception; definitions
A. An equine owner or an agent of an equine owner who regardless of consideration allows another person to take control of an equine is not liable for an injury to or the death of the person if:
1. The person has taken control of the equine from the owner or agent when the injury or death occurs.
2. The person or the parent or legal guardian of the person if the person is under eighteen years of age has signed a release before taking control of the equine.
3. The owner or agent has properly installed suitable tack or equipment or the person has personally tacked the equine with tack the person owned, leased or borrowed. If the person has personally tacked the equine, the person assumes full responsibility for the suitability, installation and condition of the tack.
4. The owner or agent assigns the person to a suitable equine based on a reasonable interpretation of the person’s representation of his skills, health and experience with and knowledge of equines.
B. Subsection A does not apply to an equine owner or agent of the equine owner who is grossly negligent or commits willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.
C. An owner, lessor or agent of any riding stable, rodeo ground, training or boarding stable or other private property that is used by a rider or handler of an equine with or without the owner’s permission is not liable for injury to or death of the equine or the rider or handler.
D. Subsection C does not apply to an owner, lessor or agent of any riding stable, rodeo ground, training or boarding stable or other private property that is used by a rider or handler of an equine if either of the following applies:
1. The owner, lessor or agent knows or should know that a hazardous condition exists and the owner, lessor or agent fails to disclose the hazardous condition to a rider or handler of an equine.
2. The owner, lessor or agent is grossly negligent or commits willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.
E. As used in this section:
1. “Equine” means a horse, pony, mule, donkey or ass.
2. “Release” means a document that a person signs before taking control of an equine from the owner or owner’s agent and that acknowledges that the person is aware of the inherent risks associated with equine activities, is willing and able to accept full responsibility for his own safety and welfare and releases the equine owner or agent from liability unless the equine owner or agent is grossly negligent or commits willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.
I acknowledge that, as used in this agreement, the term “horse” herein shall refer to all equine species and the term(s) “horseback riding” or “riding” herein will refer to riding or otherwise handling of horses, ponies, mules, or donkeys, whether from the ground or while mounted on the animal. The term “rider” will herein refer to a person who rides a horse mounted or otherwise handles or comes near a horse from the ground.
4. Acknowledgment of Inherent Risks. I acknowledge that this agreement describes some, but not all, of the risks that I might encounter in connection with my participation in the Services or the use of the Rancho Milagro facilities. I acknowledge that facilities, such as that owned by Rancho Milagro, with activities like equine therapy, horseback riding, games and competitions and numerous other activities and pastimes entail known, unknown and unanticipated risks that could result in physical, mental or emotional injury, death, or damage to myself, to property, or to third parties. The specific risks vary from one activity to another, but the risks range from (a) minor injuries such as scratches, bruises, and sprains to (b) major injuries such as breaking of bones, joint or back injuries, head injuries, concussions, eye injury or loss of sight, and heart attacks, and to (c) catastrophic injuries including paralysis and death. I understand and acknowledge that the enjoyment of this type of activity is derived in part from inherent risks beyond the accepted safety of life at home or in one’s normal day to day activities and that these inherent risks contribute to my enjoyment and are an integral reason for participation in this activity. I understand that such risks simply cannot be eliminated without jeopardizing the essential qualities of the activities of the Rancho Milagro experience. I acknowledge that I am responsible for my own safety while participating in the Services and agree to abide by and follow any instructions given or rules established by Ranch Milagro or any of its representatives with regard to my participation in any program, activity or event or use of any equipment or gear provided therewith. IF I WILL BE ENGAGING IN HORSEBACK RIDING, IT IS REQUIRED THAT I WEAR A PROTECTIVE HELMET. I acknowledge failing to use, or properly use, safety type equipment such as protective headgear or, for horseback riding, slip on laceless style riding boots with smooth soles and heels increases the risk of injury or of not surviving an accident or incident. I acknowledge that with Services involving horses, there are numerous obvious and non-obvious inherent risks always present in such activities despite all safety precautions because of the unpredictable nature and irrational behavior of horses regardless of their training and past performance. I acknowledge that a horse may, without warning or any apparent cause, buck, fall, stumble, trip, roll, rear, bite, kick, run, make unpredictable movements, spook, jump obstacles, step on a person's feet, or push or shove a person and that saddles or bridles may loosen or break. I acknowledge that if a horse is frightened or provoked it may divert from its training and act according to its natural survival instincts, which may include but are not limited to: stopping short; changing directions or speed at will; shifting its weight; and other unexpected actions.
I acknowledge that participants should not carry loose items while around horses (i.e. toys, purses, hats not fastened securely, etc.) that may fall, blow away, flap in the wind or make sharp noises that could frighten the horse. I acknowledge that riders should not yell or scream or make other sharp noises that could scare the horse. I acknowledge that I am not now pregnant and that I have no history of epileptic seizures, heart condition or any other medical problem that could be precipitated by equine activities including horseback riding. I acknowledge that it is my obligation to inform Rancho Milagro of any and all health considerations or medical conditions that might restrict my participation in any of the Services. I acknowledge that horseback riding while pregnant presents numerous obvious and non-obvious inherent risks to me and my unborn baby or babies. I acknowledge that horse activities may result in a stay at a hospital and that related injuries can be severe requiring more hospital days and resulting in more lasting residual effects than injuries in other activities. I acknowledge the fact that no horse is a completely safe horse; horses are much larger, much more powerful, and much faster than a human. If a rider falls from horse to the ground, it will generally be at a distance from 3-6 feet, and the impact may result in injury to the rider. I acknowledge that horseback riding is the only sport where one much smaller, weaker predator animal (human) tries to impose its will on, and become a unit of movement with, another much larger stronger prey animal with a mind of its own (horse) and each has a limited understanding of the other. I acknowledge that in riding a horse, saddle girths (saddle fasteners around the horse’s belly) may come loose and cause saddle slipping; in the event I notice mine or another rider’s saddle slipping it will be my responsibility to notify the guide/wrangler immediately to get assistance in re-securing the saddle. I acknowledge that upon mounting a horse and taking hold of the reins the rider is in primary control of the horse; as such, my safety as the rider largely depends upon my ability to carry out simple instructions, and my ability to remain balanced aboard the moving animal. I acknowledge that Ranch Milagro is not responsible for acts, occurrences or elements of nature (i.e. thunder; lightening; rain; wind; wild and domestic animals, insects or reptiles that may run, fly near, bite and/or sting a horse or person; or irregular footing on out-of-door groomed or wild terrain) that can scare a horse, cause it to fall or cause it to react in some other unsafe way. I acknowledge that Rancho Milagro’s facilities are located in desert, mountain and/or ranch environments that have numerous obvious and non-obvious inherent hazards including, but not limited to, rocks, holes, fences, machinery, stumps, logs, ditches, debris, roads, trails, washes, streams, rugged terrain, cliffs, cacti or other flora, stinging and/or poisonous insects and reptiles, wild animals, dangerous wildlife and other forces of nature. I acknowledge that in the desert area in which the primary Rancho Milagro facility is located, participants may experience extreme environmental conditions that could cause sunburn, dehydration, heat exhaustion, heat stroke, heat cramps or fatigue, some or all of which may diminish my or the other participants’ abilities to react or respond. I acknowledge that communication and accessibility in the terrain in which the Services may occur may be difficult and in the event of an accident, rescue and medical treatment may not be immediately available. Delays or inconvenience because of inclement weather, including but not limited to low visibility, high winds, heavy rain or snow, extreme temperature variations, etc., can occur. I acknowledge that the Services may involve lodging in a rustic Arizona style guest ranch with cabins/casitas that may present “comfort” issues for which I accept responsibility. I acknowledge that food preparation and service may be a part of this activity and that I may be eating in a lodge/community style environment or in the outdoors and that some of the food may not be to my liking and there may be errors in food storage or preparation that could cause my dissatisfaction and/or illness. I acknowledge my responsibility to inform Rancho Milagro of any specific food related allergies for myself and I acknowledge that Rancho Milagro is not responsible for allergies, illness or diseases related to meals and food preparation. I acknowledge that alcohol consumption or non-prescription drug use before or while participating in Services is not permitted, and that I will bear complete responsibility for myself and for any damages I may cause to Rancho Milagro, its property or to other participants and their property as a result of such consumption or use. I acknowledge that my participation may require me to use equipment that I might not be familiar with and will require me to interact with other guests and participants with whom I am also unfamiliar and that any of these things can cause discomfort and stress and have inherent risks. I acknowledge that Rancho Milagro is not a “Common Carrier” but rather is in the business of providing equine therapy, horseback riding, ranch stays and other programs, activities and events. Transportation to and from the Services is incidental to the Services. Vehicular transportation may in some instances be provided by Rancho Milagro and may involve errors in judgment by Rancho Milagro staff or others operating the transport vehicles. The vehicles and transport trailers may malfunction, break down, or be poorly maintained, causing injury, accidents, delays, or in the extreme case, death. I acknowledge that I am ultimately responsible for my own safety during my use of any Rancho Milagro transportation. I acknowledge that Rancho Milagro guides/wranglers have difficult jobs to perform. They seek safety, but they are not infallible. They might be ignorant of a participant’s fitness or abilities. Errors in horse selection may happen – horse and human relationships are not an exact science. They might misjudge the weather, the elements, or the terrain. They may give inadequate warnings or instructions, and the equipment being used might malfunction. There may be errors in training or selecting horses and in the maintenance, care, fit or adjusting of saddles, bridles, and other equipment. I acknowledge that I may participate in various non-equestrian activities while at the Rancho Milagro facilities, each of which will have its own known, unknown and unanticipated risks that could result in physical, mental or emotional injury, death, or damage to myself, to property, or to third parties. Other activities include things like hiking, campfires, games, competitions, etc., each of which has elements of risk. I understand and accept all of the above inherent risks and any others related to my participation in the Services
5. Personal Physical Condition. I certify that I have sufficient fitness to participate in the Services offered by Rancho Milagro. I further certify that I have no medical, mental or physical conditions that could interfere with my safety or ability to participate in these Services, or else I am willing to assume and bear the cost of all risks that may be created, directly or indirectly, by any such condition.
6. Medical Permissions. I hereby give Rancho Milagro permission to: administer emergency first aid or CPR deemed necessary; secure emergency transport or medical care; and disclose any medical information it may have about me to any health care provider that may become involved in my care, treatment or removal from the premises. If Participant is a minor, Rancho Milagro staff will attempt to contact the parent or guardian as soon as practicable under the circumstances. Nonetheless, should the need for medical attention arise, I as parent or guardian for a minor, or for myself, consent to the examination or treatment by a physician duly licensed to practice medicine in the United States of America or any health care professional duly licensed to provide health care services in the United States of America for medical care and services deemed necessary by said physician or health care professional, and its agents, associates and employees. I give permission to said persons to provide any and all medical care they deem, in their professional opinion, to be necessary. I agree to pay for any and all medical expenses incurred as a result of the use of this consent. I further waive any right to object to or bring any type of action or claim against Rancho Milagro for any of the foregoing.
7. Personal Medical, Liability and Property Insurance. I certify that I have adequate insurance to cover any injury, emergency transportation costs or damage to property I may cause to others or suffer personally while participating in the Services, or else agree to personally bear the costs of such injury, emergency transportation costs or damage to property. I understand that I am responsible for any injury or death to any horse due to my actions or inactions.
8. Photo Release. As the child's parent/legal guardian, I hereby give permission to Rancho Milagro to take photography or film (of whatsoever nature) records of any or all of my childs participation with the understanding that: any images and videos will only be used on the Rancho Milagro website, Rancho Milagro agrees that it will not include personally identifiable information or contact information about any minor, Rancho Milagro will not post photos of any minor's face to social media, Rancho Milagro will not use photos or videos of any minor's face for promotional materials.
9. Litigation, Forum Selection, Severability, Breach of Contract/Warranty Waiver, Etc. In the event I file a lawsuit against Rancho Milagro, I agree to do so solely in the city of Phoenix, Arizona, and I further agree that the substantive law of the State of Arizona will apply in that action without regard to the conflict of law rules of that state. I agree to submit to the jurisdiction of the Arizona courts. I agree that if any portion of this agreement is found to be void or unenforceable, the remaining portion will remain in full force and effect; this document is intended to be interpreted as broadly as possible. A copy (including electronic versions) of this agreement can be used as if it was the original. I understand that this document constitutes the entire agreement between myself and Rancho Milagro and that it cannot be modified or changed in any way by representations or statements of any nature (be they vocal, advertising, etc.) outside of this document; in other words, I am also waiving any claims I might have for breach of contract or warranty for statements or representations made outside of this agreement. I agree that should Rancho Milagro or anyone acting on its behalf be required to incur attorney’s fees and costs to enforce or defend this agreement, I will pay for all such fees and costs.
10. Execution by Parent or Guardian. If I as the parent or legal guardian of a Participant under 18 years of age is signing this agreement, I represent that I have complete and absolute authority to bind, contract for and legally act on behalf of said minor child and have the legal authority to make the waivers and releases contained herein. I acknowledge that Rancho Milagro is relying on this representation and would not allow the minor child to participate in its Services without this representation. In consideration of the minor child being permitted by Rancho Milagro to participate in its programs, activities and events and to use its equipment and facilities, I further agree to indemnify and hold harmless Rancho Milagro and the Released Parties from any and all claims that are brought by or on behalf of said minor and which are in any way connected to the participation by said minor.
11. Signatures. I acknowledge that the terms and conditions of this agreement are contractual in nature and that I am signing it of my own free will. I represent that I am not under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of my signing this document and that there are no other impediments or reasons why I would lack the capacity to enter into this contract with Rancho Milagro. I understand that I am voluntarily giving up the right to bring a lawsuit or claim against the above-mentioned Released Parties. I understand and accept all risks of my participation in the Rancho Milagro Services, including without limitation those summarized in this agreement. I have had sufficient opportunity to read this entire agreement. I understand this agreement and I agree to be bound by its terms.