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Sample Legal Disclaimer and an Explanation
Article © MAIL User: dsuursoo

I, _____, hereafter refered to as 'the artist', make no guarantees about the protective abilities of my product. It is a reproduction piece, and as such no guarantee of its level of protection against such items as (but not limited to) knives, swords, clubs, batons, spears, spikes, acid, flamethrowers, guns, axes, motorcycle accidents, chainsaws, shrapnel, etc. will be made. Should the undersigned, hereafter refered to as 'the customer', engage in activities that directly expose them to such materials, conditions, or states, the artist will not be liable in any way for the resulting action, as the product is not intended to be a protective garment.

I, _____, the customer, understand this and release the artist from all liability.


After reading many of the posts on our forums, and seeing the sheer number of people who make/buy chainmaille for such things as motorcycle vests, reenactments, etc., I realized, that if our product fails when we sell to one of these people, that we are in an actionable position...

Recall, that just about anyone, upon hearing the word 'chainmail' will think of armor. I know that I did.

But, chainmaille is not 'proof' against harm. It is only resistant. A slash from a knife, sword, or axe will not always break through the maille, but it could certainly break the bones underneath said maille.

So I came up with the above statement, which I incude on all receipts, and is signed by myself and the customer. I keep a copy, most importantly.

But note some things. I never call my maille armor, even the pieces that would be considered such. there's a very good reason for this. Calling it 'armor' implies protection. Stating that it is a reproduction piece, and is not guaranteed to keep you safe is something that grants tremendous leverage should the customer be hurt while wearing said chainmaille.

Originally I was only going to include these with armor-level pieces, but when a customer asked if the bracelet i had made for her would hold up enough to be considered a protective item, I realized that I would need to be universal in my approach to this.

Now, the other issue: maintaining proof that your copy is indeed the original copy, and keep its value in court.

I bring this up because it is possible someone could make an identical document with altered wording, forged signatures, etc., and claim it to be the original disclaimer. A stretch, but these things have to be considered.


The easiest way is to have a large order of carbon copy sheets made. Hopefully most of us have seen them. They're what Fedex, cable companies, etc, use when they do some work for you, and give you a receipt. It's actually several sheets bonded on one side, with identical text on all copies. The signature on the top copy is transferred down through all, and the company in question gives you one of the copies.

This can be an expensive route. Printing shops will make them, but only in large quantities. There are also folks out there who make blank sheets of this style, so that they can be printed on by whomever. These are also expensive, and require a printer that can use continuous feed paper.

Still, the additional cost of going that route could be worth the legal security. For most folks, simply having duplicate sheets, or photocopying the original and handing the buyer the copy will suffice.

Now the final legalese. I freely give all members of M.A.I.L use of the sample statement, to be used in its original form, or as altered to fit their needs.

Be safe out there.

Original URL: http://www.mailleartisans.org/articles/articledisplay.php?key=417