Sports Law • Risk Management

Charity Golf Event Incident Reports

In the unlikely event that someone is injured at your charity golf event, it is a good idea to prepare an incident report so that information can be recorded at the scene and when memories are fresh. This should be done by your organization even if golf course personnel are preparing an incident report as well.

You should have an incident report form that is available to personnel so that it can be filled out shortly after a person reports an injury. Before the golf tournament, designate a responsible and capable person that will be in charge of this task. It is best to start collecting the information from the injured person and/or witnesses immediately after the incident occurs. For example, if someone trips and falls on the golf course or is hit by a golf ball or club, questions should be asked of the injured person as listed above immediately. It is also a good idea to take photographs of the scene and injured party.

Incident reports should contain the following information:

• Name of person injured
• Name of parent or guardian if person injured is a minor
• Address and telephone numbers
• Date of Birth and age of person injured
• Social Security No. of person injured (or, at least, the last 4 digits)
• Name of employer
• Health insurance coverage information (name of insurer and policy no.)
• Date and time of incident or injury
• Location of incident
• Description of how incident occurred, in narrative detail
• Description of status of person injury---i.e., golfer, spectator, volunteer, employee, etc.
• Information regarding club membership, if applicable
• Information regarding the tournament during which the injury took place
• Police report number, if applicable
• Description of the nature of the injury
• Identification of body parts injured
• Description of medical or health care received in response to injury
• Whether transported by ambulance to a medical facility
• Whether seen in an emergency room of a hospital, and identification of that medical facility
• First date of health care
• Identification of health care providers seen
• Whether the injured person had ever had a previous, similar injury or condition
• If the person has had a previous, similar injury or condition, identify the date and health care providers seen for that injury or condition
• Identification of any witnesses to the incident
• Addresses and telephone numbers of witnesses
• Signature of injured person (or parent or guardian, if a minor)

Incident report forms should be kept secured in filing and/or in a data base so that they can be located in the event that a lawsuit arises. If there is an insurance claim, the insurance carrier may request that you provide a copy of the incident form. However, the injured person may also be required to fill out a claim application in order to receive payment of insurance benefits. It may be years before litigation or claims arising out of an injury resolve and so it is better to keep incident forms for a period beyond the expiration of your state’s statute of limitations. Statutes of limitations of minors do not begin running until after they reach majority.

Hopefully, your charity golf events will be incident free, but it is wise to prepare for the worst case scenario.