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New York Appeals Case Will Examine Golfers' Obligation to Yell Out, 'Fore!'

LBW readers already know that in November 2009, the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia decreed that the "Happy Gilmore" golf shot is a breach of the standard of care required of a golfer playing on a course with other golfers.

But the Happy Gilmore ruling is just one in the long string of issues that make up golf jurisprudence. For instance, what about the obligation to scream out, "Fore!!!??" The AP reports that tomorrow, the New York Court of Appeals will hear oral argument in the case of two doctors who were playing golf together. Dr. Anoop Kapoor hit a shot from the rough that went 50-80 degrees off course and hit Dr. Azad Anand in the head, blinding him in one eye. Anand was standing just 15-20 feet away from Kapoor when Kapoor took his shot.

Anand subsequently sued Kapoor, alleging that he failed to yell  "Fore!" as a warning before the shot. The trial court dismissed Anand's lawsuit, ruling that he assumed the risk of injury by golfing. The intermediate appeals court agreed, holding that Anand was "'not in the foreseeable danger zone' and his friend had no duty to yell the customary warning." However, one dissenting justice wrote that there may be an issue as to whether Kapoor "unreasonably increased" Anand's risk by not shouting out "Fore!" before the shot.

I guess it all depends on what the "foreseeable danger zone" is? For the record, if you're golfing with me, the foreseeable danger zone is, sadly, any part of the golf course not located behind me.

Posted by Bruce Carton on November 15, 2010 at 02:19 PM | Permalink | Comments (4)


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