Property owners are supposed to make sure their land is in a reasonably safe condition for those who enter it. Unfortunately, this does not always happen. If your child has been injured on another person’s property, you may be entitled to compensation for his or her harm.
Our premises liability attorneys can guide you through the entire legal process. You can rest assured that our injury lawyers will carefully craft a strategy that is tailored to your situation and that we will vigorously pursue any party responsible for your child’s injuries.
Premises Liability Law for Children
Premises liability law establishes guidelines for property owners in terms of their duties and obligations to protect children who are on their premises. In general, property owners are immune from liability for injuries suffered by trespassers, unless those injuries were a result of the property owner’s willful or wanton acts. However, there is a significant exception when it comes to children on property through the “attractive nuisance” doctrine.
Attractive Nuisance Doctrine
Since children are young and inexperienced, they may not understand the risks of certain property conditions. A property owner is responsible for identifying attractive nuisances (like swimming pools) and taking the necessary precautions to protect children. That way, children won’t be attracted to their property in the first place.
Attractive nuisances include:
- Swimming pools
- Hot tubs
- Broken objects
- Machinery (like lawnmowers)
- Ice boxes
- Abandoned vehicles
Property owners owe a special duty to young children when their presence on the property can be reasonably anticipated, even if they are trespassing. It is important to note that the doctrine of attractive nuisance only applies to manmade attractions, as opposed to natural attractions like ponds, lakes, or streams.
Filing a Claim for Attractive Nuisance
To establish a claim for attractive nuisance, the following elements must be shown:
- Property owner knew (or had reason to know) there was a dangerous condition on the property that would attract children and convince one to trespass
- Property owner knew (or should have known) that the dangerous condition was one that carried unreasonable risk of harm to a child
- Child, due to age and inexperience, wasn’t able to understand the risks of the dangerous condition
- Burden of getting rid of the dangerous condition would be less than the threat posed to the child
- Property owner didn’t take reasonable care to remove the dangerous condition or guard child from being hurt
Recoverable damages in attractive nuisance cases may include medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, pain and suffering, and more. As these examples show, they can compensate an injured child for both economic and non-economic forms of harm.
Our Legal Team
Premises liability cases are complex and can become even more complicated when children are involved. If your child has been hurt in an accident on someone else’s property, it is important to consult a skilled slip and fall attorney who can advise you on your options.
At Lusk, Drasites, & Tolisano, premises liability lawyers are dedicated to holding negligent property owners accountable for the harm that they cause. We also represent injured individuals and families near Cape Coral, Fort Myers, and Naples. To request your free legal consultation with one of our Florida accident attorneys, call us toll free at (800) 283-7442.