Free Hold Harmless Agreement Templates

A hold harmless template is a predesigned document used by individuals and entities to craft an agreement where both parties release each other of any liabilities.

These could be liabilities for damages, losses, or injuries associated with a specific event or activity. Such an agreement is alternatively referred to as an indemnity agreement or a liability waiver.

This template can be utilized across different industries, including construction and real estate. It provides a framework for setting clear boundaries and protecting oneself from unforeseen circumstances through a hold harmless arrangement. To achieve this, it has fields for the key components that must appear in such an agreement. This way, it acts as a starting point; however, it can be customized to include unique aspects of the agreement. Using the template as a guide saves time crafting accurate, consistent, and enforceable hold harmless agreements. 

Hold Harmless Agreement Vs. Release of Liability

It is common to confuse a hold harmless agreement with a release of liability. Even though they are both legal documents that serve relatively similar functions, they are different.

Below are the fundamental differences between the two documents:


A hold harmless agreement is a contract between two or more parties. It allows one party to assume the legal liabilities and potential costs of another party arising from specified actions, events, or circumstances. On the other hand, a release of liability is a document that releases one party from any legal claim or responsibility. The liability can be for any injuries, damages, or losses suffered by another party in relation to a specific activity or event. 

Transfer of responsibility

The Hold Harmless Agreement establishes a contractual obligation on both parties to cover any specified and unforeseen liabilities. Contrary, a Release of Liability operates imposes the obligation on the party signing the document while releasing the other party of the defined liability. 

Assumption of risks

A hold harmless agreement does not explicitly address the assumption of risks associated with the activity. However, a release of liability specifically acknowledges and addresses the assumption of risks by the individual.  


The hold harmless agreement can be applied in multiple contractual relationships, business arrangements, and agreements. On the contrary, a release of liability is relatively limited to activities where potential risks are known.  


You can refer to the infographics provided below to understand how a hold harmless agreement can benefit you.  

Free Templates

Free Hold Harmless Agreement Template Example
Printable Hold Harmless Agreement Format Sample
Editable Hold Harmless Agreement Template in Word
Sample Hold Harmless Agreement Format

    Key Components of a Hold Harmless Agreement Template

    Our free printable templates are designed to incorporate fundamental information in your hold harmless agreement. However, you must complete it correctly to make it useful in your situation and to ensure both parties are protected from liabilities.

    Below is a procedure for filling the template’s different sections:

    Parties involved

    In the first section, identify the parties bound by the agreement and their contractual roles (indemnitor/releasor or indemnitee/releasee) within the agreement. You should also indicate the effective date. 

    Description of the activity or event

    Next, use the purpose section to define the nature and scope of the activity or event. This information ensures that both parties understand the scope of the arrangement.  

    Indemnification clause

    The next section prompts you to clarify both parties’ obligations in the agreement. The indemnitor is to indemnify the indemnitee and assume responsibility for the specified damages, losses, and claims associated with the activity or event. You should enlist the potential claims, damages, and liabilities covered by the agreement. Also, you can specify the limitation of the indemnification.      

    Waiver of liability

    Then use the waiver of liability clause to absolve the indemnitee from responsibility for liabilities associated with damages, injuries, and losses. Use explicit language to indicate that you waive your rights to seek legal and will assume all the risks voluntarily. 

    Insurance requirements

    Next, if there are any insurance requirements needed for the event or activity, specify them in this section of the template. You should also enlist the different types of insurance policies needed for potential risks associated with the activity. Also, define coverage limits.     

    Governing law

    Lastly, indicate the jurisdiction under which the agreement will be implemented. This ensures there are consistent guidelines directing how disputes are resolved and the provisions are interpreted. You should then supply your signature and have the indemnitor sign it as well.       

    Creating an Effective Hold Harmless Agreement Template: Your Guide to Creating the Best Hold Harmless Agreement

    While a template will offer you a guide to creating a standard hold harmless agreement, you should aim to increase its effectiveness in this process. You can do so by reviewing the components that influence its comprehensiveness and enforceability as follows:

    Tailoring the agreement to specific circumstances and parties involved

    The template captures the general terms of a hold harmless agreement. It is thus advisable to customize it to suit the specific circumstances between you and the indemnitor. So, analyze the event/activity and parties in question and modify the template to reflect the associated liabilities, risks, and responsibilities. 

    The liability waiver is legally binding. So, it is important to have legal counsel review the template used to create the agreement. The attorney will ensure the provisions and limitations in the template are enforceable. They verify whether mandatory clauses are included in compliance with the guidelines of the applicable jurisdiction.  

    Importance of clear and concise language in the agreement

    The language used should be precise and understandable. There should be no ambiguity in the inference of any provision in the template. An easily understandable language prevents disputes among parties due to misunderstandings and misinterpretations.   

    Addressing potential limitations and exceptions in the agreement

    The template should have provisions clarifying the circumstances that limit or nullify the indemnification. Such circumstances include trigger events, misconduct, or omissions. The template should also have modification and termination clauses that direct when and how these processes should be undertaken. 

    Where is a Hold Harmless Agreement Template Helpful?

    The free template can be utilized in different industries and under different circumstances where parties intend to protect themselves from legal liabilities and claims. Some of the common situations where a template for a hold harmless agreement can be used include:

    Real estate

    The template can be used in real estate when landlords want to protect themselves from liability for any injuries or damages within the premises. The template is simultaneously used to allocate the responsibility of keeping the premises safe to the tenant.  


    Organizers of sports tournaments for competition, fitness programs, or recreational can use the template to absolve themselves from any claims and liabilities associated with the sporting event. Participants are required to sign the agreement as an acknowledgment and assumption of the associated risks. Coaches or facility owners can also use the template.       

    Venue rentals

    Venue owners can use the template to allocate event organizers the responsibility for any damages, injuries, or incidents that may occur in the event. Examples of such events include corporate events, weddings, talent shows, etc. 


    Contractors, suppliers, and subcontractors in the construction industry can use the template. It helps them protect themselves from liabilities associated with accidents, injuries, and property damage during the project execution. 


    Owners of amusement parks and other recreational venues can relieve themselves from claims, liabilities, or risks associated with accidents in the venues. Visitors can sign the template to acknowledge and assume the potential risks that may occur during the visit. 

    Service providers

    Professional services providers as consultants use the template to protect themselves from liabilities and claims that may occur due to the services provided. The template guarantees that clients assume responsibility for these liabilities and claims.   

    Pet owners

    Individuals, such as pet sitters, boarding facilities, and groomers, can use the template to protect themselves from the liability of injuries and accidents to the pets during care. The pet owners sign the hold harmless agreement to acknowledge the associated risks and assumption of liability for any injuries, damages, or accidents. 

    A hold harmless agreement is executed in accordance with the applicable jurisdiction. However, certain considerations are specific to such construction-related agreements in particular jurisdictions.

    These include:


    In California, construction-related hold harmless agreements are required to include proof of insurance coverage that appoints the other party as an additional insured. Also, they must comply with Civil Code 2782, which limits the enforceability of particular indemnification provisions in these types of agreements.      


    The state of Florida dictates that construction-oriented hold harmless agreements by subcontractors and suppliers abide by the statutory notice requirements. This is in order to preserve the stipulated lien rights and ensure that the agreement provisions do not contradict these statutory obligations. Additionally, the agreement should comply with the state-specific regulations for construction liens waivers to ensure it contains all available rights and obligations of the parties.      


    In Texas, anti-indemnity statutes limit particular provisions of construction-oriented hold harmless agreements. These statutes restrain the agreement from indemnifying liability for personal harm and property damage resulting from a party’s own negligence. Also, the agreement must name the other party as an additional insured endorsement on liability insurance policies. The parties may have to provide proof of this insurance coverage. 

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Why do I need a Hold Harmless Agreement?

    A hold harmless Agreement is necessary to protect parties involved in a particular activity or transaction. It helps allocate the risk and potential costs associated with the activity by specifying that one party will assume responsibility for certain liabilities and indemnify the other party. This agreement helps protect against legal claims, losses, and damages and provides clarity and assurance regarding the parties’ obligations and potential liabilities.

    Who should use a Hold Harmless Agreement?

    A Hold Harmless Agreement should be used by individuals, businesses, organizations, or entities involved in activities or transactions where there is a potential for liability. These service providers, landlords, contractors, and organizers. 

    Are Hold Harmless Agreements enforceable in court?

    If well executed, a hold harmless agreement is enforceable in court. However, it must be written in legally enforceable language, reflect the situation at hand, and be executed in accordance with jurisdiction-specific laws. You can consult a legal professional to verify that the agreement is properly crafted and enforceable. 

    Can a Hold Harmless Agreement completely absolve a party from liability?

    Yes. However, the extent of indemnification depends on the specific language used in the agreement. So, it is advisable to involve an attorney to ensure the agreement stipulates exactly what you intend. 

    Can a Hold Harmless Agreement be modified or terminated?

    Yes. The agreement can be modified and terminated if both parties agree to it. You should include modifications and termination provisions to ensure a clear and consistent framework for undertaking these changes. 

    Should I consult a lawyer when using a Hold Harmless Agreement template?

    Definitely, it is actually advisable to consult a legal professional to guide you in the drafting process and identification of laws applicable to your situation. They can help you personalize the template to suit your needs and preferences while being legally enforceable. 

    About This Article

    Melissa Horton
    Authored by:
    Legal Writing | M.A Marketing, B.A. Finance
    Melissa Horton is a highly skilled legal writer and co-owner of a leading financial planning firm in Washington, D.C. With over a decade of experience in the financial services and planning industry, Melissa's expertise lies in teaching clients how to maintain sustainable financial health. She holds a JD degree and possesses a deep understanding of legal principles and regulations, enabling her to deliver exceptional legal writing that is both informative and accessible. Melissa's passion for helping individuals navigate complex legal matters shines through in her work, making her a trusted authority in the field of legal writing.

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