Who Is Responsible for a Trick-or-Treat Injury?
Halloween is around the corner, which means all kinds of monsters and ghouls will be out looking for candy. They should take safety precautions to make sure their night is all about treats and no tricks, but what if an accident happens on someone else’s property?
Halloween can generate premises liability claims unlike those seen during any other day of the year. Keep reading to learn more about factors that can go into your claim and how they may affect its outcome.
Slip & Fall Injuries on Halloween
Premises liability law covers any kind of injury caused by a property owner’s negligence, but slip (or trip) and fall injuries are among the most common of these claims.
Property owners are legally responsible for ensuring their homes – inside and out – are safe for visitors. This is especially relevant to Halloween, when a homeowner can expect children and their parents to cross onto their private property seeking treats.
On Halloween, slips, trips, and falls might occur and cause injury. If the circumstances of a particular incident point toward a condition on the homeowner’s property that caused the accident, then the homeowner may be liable for damages.
A few hazards that can cause a premises liability injury on Halloween include the following:
- Power cords running across walkways
- Decorations placed in a manner that forces someone off of an established walkway
- Limited visibility due to a lack of lighting or artificial fog
- Cracks, potholes, divots, and other walkway defects
- Decorations that obscure otherwise obvious hazards
Homeowners are not only responsible for mitigating known hazards on their properties, but they are also responsible for hazards they should have known and warned visitors about. Typically, this means a lack of signage, caution tape (which may be ambiguous on Halloween), or physical barriers against hazards can also amount to negligence.
What If a Homeowner Isn’t Giving Out Candy? Are They Still Liable for Injuries?
Even if a homeowner isn’t signaling their participation in Halloween trick-or-treating, they can still be liable for injuries that happen on their property.
Having Halloween decorations and/or leaving your porchlight on are traditionally considered signs that a homeowner is welcoming trick-or-treaters onto their property. Even if a homeowner doesn’t intend to participate in the festivities, they are always responsible for ensuring their property is free of hazards that would harm trick-or-treaters, who are legally considered invitees.
Things might be a little more nuanced if a homeowner didn’t have any Halloween décor and kept their porch light off, but it’s unlikely that they would completely escape liability for a hazard that could have injured anyone else.
Contact Us If You or Someone You Love Was Injured
If you or your child were injured on someone else’s property during Halloween trick-or-treating, you can reach out to the Law Office of Robert J. Kaiser for help with your personal injury claim. By taking action as soon as possible, you can protect your chance to recover meaningful compensation for damages incurred because of a homeowner’s negligence.">(661) 441-3446.