Sports, Recreation, and Attractions Law

The world of sports, recreation, and attractions is a booming industry that brings in billions of dollars every year in the United States. From health and wellness institutions like gyms, spas, and recreational sports complexes to entertainment options such as theme parks, virtual reality centers, and off-highway vehicle riding, the range of options is vast. There is no shortage of options for the consumer, and new businesses are opening every day as technology merges with the sports, recreation, and attractions industries.
As these industries grow and evolve, the need for legal representation knowledgeable in the unique issues that confront these industries does as well. The Sports, Recreation, and Attractions team at Manning Kass has years of experience representing health clubs, athletic associations, sports clubs, amusement parks and attractions. Our team can handle every aspect of their client’s businesses including:
  • Commercial transactions, including preparation of exculpatory agreements, membership agreements, general policies and procedures, employee handbooks, vendor agreements, and leases. 
  • Employment practices including allegation investigation, termination counseling, and best practices.
  • Defense of personal injury claims including overseeing accident investigation, tendering of claims, and interacting with claimants and counsel to dispose of claims before they become lawsuits.
  • Litigation, including personal injury defense, employment and wage and hour, ADA claim defense, and business litigation.
  • General business consulting, including corporate structuring, membership purchase agreements and mergers and acquisitions.
  • Loss prevention and risk management.
Through our years of representation of clients in the sports and recreation industry, we have acquired special expertise in some of the unique issues that arise in this area. We have been involved in securing the publication of some of the leading state and federal appellate decisions on such immunities and defenses as the assumption of the risk, exculpatory agreements, open and obvious conditions, recreational use immunity, and trivial defects. 
Working with our Employment Law and Real Estate teams, amongst others, we are frequently retained to perform specialized transactional work ranging from writing code-compliant membership agreements to drafting employee manuals to negotiating lease agreements. We truly provide a "one-stop shop" with the ability to handle virtually every legal need for businesses in these industries. To put it plainly, there’s very little that we haven’t worked on directly, and we feel confident in our ability to handle any issue that may arise.
The Sports, Recreation, and Attractions Law team at Manning Kass is led by Founding Partner Anthony ("Tony") J. Ellrod. Mr. Ellrod is AV Preeminent® by Martindale Hubbell, is an Associate of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), and is a member of the International Health, Racquet & Sports Club Association and other industry trade groups. He is recognized nationally as one of the leading experts on the laws that affect the sports and recreation industries and frequently speaks on such matters.