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A hold harmless settlement agreement is a contract where one party releases the other from liability, claims, damages, or losses from an event or transaction. The purpose of a hold harmless agreement is to protect one party from liability or responsibility for any harm or injury that may occur during the agreement.
Under California law, a hold harmless agreement must be in writing and signed by the parties involved to be enforceable. The agreement must clearly state the risks or liabilities being waived and the scope of the hold harmless provision.
Essentials of a Hold Harmless Settlement Agreement
In California, a hold harmless settlement agreement is a legally binding contract that must meet certain requirements to be enforceable. The following are some of the essentials of a hold harmless settlement agreement in California:
The agreement must be written unambiguously, clearly defining the scope of the hold harmless provision and the risks or liabilities being waived.
The agreement must be supported by valid consideration, which means both parties must receive some benefit in exchange for agreeing to the hold harmless provision.
The agreement must be signed by all parties involved in the transaction, including any third parties who may be affected by the agreement.
The agreement must have a lawful purpose and cannot be used to waive liability for intentional misconduct, gross negligence, or violations of the law.
The agreement cannot violate or contradict California law.
Each party must clearly understand the terms of the agreement, and the agreement must be entered voluntarily and without coercion.
Overall, a hold harmless settlement agreement can be useful for protecting parties from liability in California. Still, ensuring the agreement is properly drafted and meets all the legal requirements for enforceability is important. It's recommended that parties seek legal advice before entering into such an agreement to ensure that their rights and interests are fully protected.
Examples of a Hold Harmless Settlement Agreement
A construction project typically involves multiple parties, including contractors, subcontractors, and property owners. In this case, a hold harmless agreement may protect each party from liability for injuries or damages that may occur during the project.
For example, the property owner may agree to hold the contractor harmless from any claims arising from accidents on the job site. In contrast, the contractor may agree to hold the property owner harmless from any claims arising from construction defects.
Real Estate Transaction
In a real estate transaction, a hold harmless agreement may protect the buyer or seller from legal claims that may arise from defects or issues with the property. For example, the seller may agree to hold the buyer harmless from any claims arising from environmental issues or zoning violations. In contrast, the buyer may agree to hold the seller harmless from any claims arising from title defects.
When hosting an event, such as a concert or festival, a hold harmless agreement may be used to protect the event organizer from liability for injuries or damages that may occur during the event. For example, the event organizer may agree to hold the venue owner harmless from any claims arising from accidents on the premises. In contrast, the venue owner may agree to hold the event organizer harmless from any claims arising from property damage.
In all of these examples, a hold harmless settlement agreement protects parties from liability and provides clarity and protection in legal transactions. It's important to consult with a qualified attorney to ensure the agreement is properly drafted and meets all of the legal requirements for enforceability.
- Hold Harmless Clause: This provision in the agreement states that one party agrees to protect and indemnify the other party against any legal claims or damages that may arise from a specific event or situation.
- Indemnification: It is compensating or reimbursing someone for loss, damage, or injury. In a hold harmless agreement, one party agrees to indemnify the other for any losses or damages arising from the specific event or situation.
- Waiver of Liability: This provision in the agreement states that one party waives their right to sue or seek damages from the other party for any losses or damages that may arise from the specific event or situation.
- Mutual Hold Harmless: This is an agreement between two parties in which both parties agree to hold each other harmless from any legal claims or damages that may arise from a specific event or situation.
- Third-Party Beneficiary: This is a person or entity that is not a party to the agreement but may benefit from it. In this hold harmless agreement, a third-party beneficiary, such as an insurer or subcontractor, may be protected from legal claims or damages as a result of the agreement.
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Meet some of our Hold Harmless Settlement Agreement Lawyers
January 20, 2022
Dual Qualified New York Attorney & Enrolled NZ Barrister & Solicitor
November 8, 2021
Ms. Penovich partners with clients to overcome complex challenges and find innovative solutions. Ms. Penovich has served as General Counsel at J.W. Cole and an Adjunct Professor of Estate Planning at the MUMA College of Business at the University of South Florida. She is a member of the Florida Bar, and has over 15 years of progressive financial services experience developed at top-tier financial firms including Transamerica, Raymond James, and Citi.
November 10, 2021
Attorney licensed to practice in both California and New York, Josiah is focused on helping people understand what's in their contracts, and do business with confidence.
November 13, 2021
I am an experienced in house counsel and have worked in the pharmaceutical, consumer goods and restaurant industry. I have experience with a variety of agreements, below is a non-exhaustive list of types of agreements I can help with: Supply Agreements Distribution Agreements Manufacture Agreements Service Agreements Employment Agreements Consulting Agreements Commercial and residential lease agreements Non-compete Agreements Confidentiality and Non-Disclosure Agreements Demand Letters Termination notice Notice of breach of contract My experience as in house counsel has exposed me to a wide variety of commercial matters for which I can provide consulting and assistance on. I have advised US, Canadian and International entities on cross-functional matters and have guided them when they are in different countries and jurisdictions as their counterparties. I can provide assistance early on in a business discussion to help guide you and make sure you ask the right questions even before the commercial agreement needs to be negotiated, but if you are ready to put a contract in place I can most definitely help with that too.
November 16, 2021
Jeff Colerick has been practicing law for over 30 years and has devoted his professional career to providing clients with intelligent representation and personal care. His experience as a lawyer involving complex matters has resulted in a long history of success. Jeff has built a practice based on a deep understanding of real estate assets and corporate activities. He combines his industry knowledge with a practical and collaborative approach to problem solving. Jeff’s client relationships are strong because they are built on mutual respect. Jeff talks the language of real estate and understands that it is a vehicle to deliver your business strategy. Jeff provides practical, responsive, and strategic advice related to real estate acquisition, construction, leasing, and sale of a wide range of real property types, including office, retail, medical, industrial, industrial flex-space, mixed-use condominium, multifamily and hospitality. As leader of the Goodspeed Merrill real estate practice group, Jeff represents clients with commercial and residential transactions, purchases and sales, land acquisition and development, real estate investment and financing, financing liens and security interests, and commercial leasing and lease maintenance, including lease enforcement support and advice. The firm represents clients in matters concerning construction, lending, developers, contractors and subcontractors, cell site leasing, property and boundary disputes, common interest community law, and residential condominiums and planned communities.
November 16, 2021
Attorney Yu represents clients in business and real estate transactions and has successfully handled more than 200 cases. She has experience in corporate law, including forming legal entities, employment law and workers’ compensation law matters pertaining to wage and hour violations, industrial injuries, misclassifications, and other employment-related torts and contracts. Attorney Yu works with employers to address employee relationship issues, develop effective policies and craft employment agreements. Attorney Yu regularly advises clients on the legal and business aspects of potential investments, ongoing business operations, debt collections, shareholders and partners disputes, business purchase agreements, risk assessment, intellectual property disputes, and potential contract disputes. She regularly handles real estate law matters such as landlord-tenant disputes, lease agreements, buy-sell disputes, title disputes, and construction disputes. She also has substantial experience settling debts, and she drafts, reviews and negotiates settlement agreements. Attorney Yu conducts extensive legal research and provides on-point legal advice to both corporate and individual clients.
November 17, 2021
Harrison Kordestani is an executive with over twenty-five years experience in entertainment and media, energy, technologies, and start-ups. Mr. Kordestani has also developed a specialized legal and strategic consulting practice representing select entertainment, oil and gas, mortgage lending, and technology start-up clientele. He is also deeply passionate about new technologies and has also actively worked in building companies in the video-on-demand, wearable tech, information of things, demand prediction and app-marketing spaces. As an attorney, Mr. Kordestani's focus has been on transactional drafting and negotiation and providing ongoing legal counsel, corporate compliance, and contract interpretation to numerous private individuals as well as companies in varied fields.