In current law, the "Colorado Recreational Use Statute" (CRUS) protects landowners (owners) from liability resulting from the use of their lands by other individuals for recreational purposes. However, the CRUS does not limit an owner's liability for injuries or death resulting from the owner's willful or malicious failure to guard or warn against a known dangerous condition, use, structure, or activity likely to cause harm (willful or malicious failure).
The bill states that under such circumstances, an owner does not commit a willful or malicious failure if:
- The owner posts a warning sign at the primary access point where the individual entered the land, which sign satisfies certain criteria;
- The owner maintains photographic or other evidence of the sign; and
- The dangerous condition, use, structure, or activity that caused the injury or death is described by the sign.
The bill requires an individual who accesses land for recreational purposes to stay on the designated recreational trail, route, area, or roadway unless the owner expressly allows otherwise, or be deemed a trespasser.
Currently, the CRUS states that "owner" includes the possessor of any interest in land. The bill clarifies that "owner" includes a possessor or holder of a conservation easement.
The bill states that the CRUS may not be construed to limit an owner's ability to restrict or prohibit the use of the owner's land for any recreational purposes.
The bill also updates certain archaic language within the CRUS.
(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)