Limitation of liability; purpose of sections.
The purpose of sections 37-729 to 37-736 is to encourage owners of land to make available to the public land and water areas for recreational purposes by limiting their liability toward persons entering thereon and toward persons who may be injured or otherwise damaged by the acts or omissions of persons entering thereon.
Source:Laws 1965, c. 193, § 1, p. 589; R.S.1943, (1993), § 37-1001; Laws 1998, LB 922, § 344.
The Recreation Liability Act applies to bar liability only in premises liability cases. Hodson v. Taylor, 290 Neb. 348, 860 N.W.2d 162 (2015).
The purpose of the Recreation Liability Act is to encourage owners of land to make available to the public land and water areas for recreational purposes by limiting their liability toward persons entering thereon and toward persons who may be injured or otherwise damaged by the acts or omissions of persons entering thereon. The Legislature did not intend for a court to look to the subjective intent of an injured plaintiff in using public land to determine whether or not the Recreation Liability Act would bar an action. Veskerna v. City of West Point, 254 Neb. 540, 578 N.W.2d 25 (1998).
In order to facilitate the purpose of the Recreation Liability Act, a landowner need allow only some members of the public, including the plaintiff, to use his or her land without charge. McIntosh v. Omaha Public Schools, 249 Neb. 529, 544 N.W.2d 502 (1996).
The Recreation Liability Act does not require a landowner to fully dedicate his or her property to the public before the landowner comes under the protection of the act. Holden v. Schwer, 242 Neb. 389, 495 N.W.2d 269 (1993).
Provisions of Recreation Liability Act apply to urban as well as rural areas. Evidence required a finding that the entire area owned by the defendant was covered by act and had been made available, directly or indirectly, to the plaintiff. Gallagher v. Omaha Public Power Dist., 225 Neb. 354, 405 N.W.2d 571 (1987).
A municipality is an owner within the meaning of the Recreation Liability Act. Bailey v. City of North Platte, 218 Neb. 810, 359 N.W.2d 766 (1984).