Torts in Boxing

Boxing is obviously a dangerous sport for participants, but spectators may be injured as well. In certain instances, spectators and participants may bring tort actions to recover for their injuries.

Premises owner’s duty

The owner of a boxing arena must exercise reasonable care in maintaining the boxing arena and facilities.

Breach of duty to spectators

An owner may breach the duty of reasonable care to spectators by failing to properly maintain the seats and steps in the arena. The owner may be held to have known that spectators routinely stand on their seats during exciting moments in a boxing match, and, thus, the owner will be liable if a spectator is injured because the seat did not withstand such activity.

Breach of duty to participants

Participants may bring a tort action against an owner arising from injuries during a boxing match. For example, a participant who is struck by his competitor after the match is over may sue the owner if the owner failed in its duty to supply security to the participant.


A participant will likely be successful in defending an action in which another participant seeks recovery for injuries that he sustained during the match because participants assume the obvious risk of injury, which is the purpose of the sport.

Copyright 2012 LexisNexis, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc.