When it comes to conducting business in New York, you’ll likely come across on hold harmless agreements. Not surprisingly, these documents can be very confusing. In an effort to help those located in the New York area, we’ve decided to provide some more insight into this essential legal document.

What is an On Hold Harmless Agreement?

An on hold harmless agreement is a contract that requires one party (the “indemnitor”) to relieve a second party (the “indemnitee”) of any legal liability that might arise from specified activities. These agreements limit the amount of legal liability or other financial burden that might be placed on one party due to the other party’s actions.

How Does it Work?

When negotiating an on hold harmless agreement, it’s important to be clear on which party is the indemnitor and which is the indemnitee. For example, in construction contracts, the contractor is usually the indemnitor and the owner is the indemnitee. The contractor agrees that if any claim or lawsuit is brought against the owner as a result of the contractor’s work, the contractor will be responsible for covering that cost.

The scope of the agreement should also be clearly outlined in the contract. For example, the agreement might specify that the contractor is responsible for any claims due to their negligence or errors, but not for any other claims or lawsuits related to the project.

What are the Benefits of an On Hold Harmless Agreement?

Having an on hold harmless agreement in place can be beneficial for both parties involved. For the indemnitee, it provides legal protection in the event of a lawsuit or claim. For the indemnitor, it ensures that any financial risk or burden is limited and clearly defined.

It’s also important to note that an on hold harmless agreement does not replace insurance. In other words, each party should still maintain their own insurance policies to protect their interests in the event of a claim.

Does New York Law Recognize On Hold Harmless Agreements?

Yes, New York does recognize on hold harmless agreements and the laws governing them vary from state to state. Anytime an agreement is entered into, both parties should be aware of their obligations and the laws regarding their specific situation.

In general, New York courts will enforce an on hold harmless agreement that is fair and reasonable for both parties involved. However, if either of the parties fails to meet their obligations, the court will not enforce the agreement. Additionally, if either of the parties breaches the agreement, the court might still limit damages accordingly.

Where Can I Find an Attorney Who Understands New York Laws & Regulations?

If you’re in the New York area and need legal counsel that understands local regulations, feel free to check out UpCounsel. Our network of experienced attorneys has an average of 14 years of experience and have been rated and reviewed by hundreds of business professionals. Whether you need a one-time consult or an entire team of freelance legal experts, UpCounsel is here to help.


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