Attractive Nuisance Doctrine Lawyers

Attractive Nuisance Doctrine Lawyers

Florida Attractive Nuisance Doctrine Lawyers

Children on Your Property – Attractive Nuisance Doctrine

Under most circumstances, Florida’s premises liability laws seek to protect property owners from civil lawsuits brought by trespassers on their property, unless the injuries were caused through intentional acts by the property owner. For instance, Florida property owners can’t be held legally liable for damages to a trespasser who was drunk, under the influence of drugs or committing a felony at the time of their injury or death.

There is one exception to this premises liability legal standard. Under Florida’s Attractive Nuisance Doctrine, property owners may be held liable for injuries to or the death of children who are on their property as an invited guest or as a trespasser.

When Does the Attractive Nuisance Doctrine Apply?

The following conditions must be met for the Attractive Nuisance Doctrine to apply to a homeowner:

  • The property has a condition with the potential for danger.
  • The owner created and maintained the potentially dangerous condition.
  • The owner knew or should have known that children would be attracted to the condition.
  • The owner knew or should have known that children could be harmed by the condition.

What Conditions are Considered an Attractive Nuisance?

Under the Attractive Nuisance Doctrine, children are viewed differently than adults. Unlike adults, young children lack the ability to understand the danger that the object or condition poses to them. Some objects that could be considered dangerous to children and an attractive nuisance might include:

  • Refrigerators and Freezers, without doors removed
  • Washers and Dryers, without doors removed
  • Any other airtight container, without doors removed
  • Swimming Pools
  • Ponds
  • Fountains
  • Trampolines
  • Playgrounds
  • Zip lines
  • Treehouses
  • Construction
  • Ladders
  • Firearms

How Can Owners Prevent Attractive Nuisance Claims?

If you own property of any kind, especially in a neighborhood with families and children, it is important that you take reasonable steps to correct the hazards or warn of the potential risks on your property. For example:

Refrigerators, freezers, washers, dryers and other airtight containers:

  • If they are being placed outside for disposal or are inoperative, remove the doors from them. While they may still be attract active to a child, removing the doors prevents a trapping or suffocation hazard.
  • If they are outside and operational, place a lock on them.

Swimming pools, ponds and fountains:

  • Build a fence at least four feet high and use a locking gate.
  • Place signs to warn of the danger.
  • Consider using a pool safety cover and have water rescue items readily available.
  • If you’re hosting a summer pool party, never leave children without adult supervision.
  • Consider purchasing additional injury liability insurance.

Trampolines, playgrounds, zip lines and treehouses:

  • Ensure proper spacing of swings from each other and the support structure.
  • Check swings and other equipment regularly for degradation from wear and tear.
  • If it goes up, it comes back down with greater force. Consider installing a shock absorbing surface at least six feet from swings, trampolines and zip lines.
  • Use fixed wooden ladders for treehouses.
  • Avoid using rope ladders of any kind.
  • Consider installing a fence that locks and has an alarm system.
  • Check with your homeowner’s insurance company. Some of these items may not be covered by your policy or can possibly void your policy.

Construction and ladders:

  • Ladders on the side of a house invite children to climb. Place ladders on the ground when done working for the day.
  • Tools can be dangerous, especially the powered variety. Lock them up each day, when you’re finished working.
  • Unfinished decks, rails, stairs and unfinished electrical outlets can create falling and electrocution hazards. Use safety cones or warning signs.

Firearms:

  • Use trigger locks.
  • Keep firearms in a gun safe or locked cases.
  • Ammunition should be kept in a separate locked container.
  • If using keyed locks, the keys should be kept separate and hidden.
  • Children should not have access to the keys or combinations for the locks.
    • Attractive Nuisance Doctrine Lawsuits

      If your child has been injured or died on someone else’s property and you believe it was caused by an attractive nuisance, contact our law firm today. We are a Martindale-Hubbell AV® rated law firm, the highest possible rating for legal ability and ethical standards.

      We have over 250 years of combined legal experience and excel at complex personal injury and wrongful death litigation. Our attorneys have extensive experience handling premises liability claims.

      We offer no cost case evaluations and handle all premises liability claims on a contingency fee basis. This means we charge no attorney’s fees unless we settle your claim or win a favorable verdict in court. Your time to file a premises liability or wrongful death claim may be limited. Contact us today for your free case review.
       

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Contact Us:
Lutz, Bobo & Telfair, P.A.
Sarasota, FL

2 North Tamiami Trail
5th Floor
Sarasota, FL 34236

Toll Free: (866) 802-8182
Local: (941) 951-1800

Sarasota Office:

2 N. Tamiami Trail, 5th Floor
Sarasota, FL 34236

Toll Free: (866) 802-8182
Local: (941) 951-1800
Fax: (941) 366-1603

Hours:

Monday – Friday
8:30 AM – 5:15 PM

Saturday & Sunday Closed

Tallahassee Office:

2155 Delta Blvd, Suite 210-B
Tallahassee, Florida 32303

Toll Free: (877) 521-0890
Local: (850) 521-0890
Fax: (850) 521-0891

Hours:

Monday – Friday
8:30 AM – 5:15 PM

Saturday & Sunday Closed

Bradenton Office:

1201 6th Ave. W., Suite 109
Bradenton, FL 34205

Toll Free: (866) 802-8182
Local: (941) 806-0356
Fax: (941) 366-1603

Hours:

Monday – Friday
8:30 AM – 5:15 PM

Saturday & Sunday Closed

Punta Gorda Office:

122 Nesbit Street
Punta Gorda, FL 33950

Toll Free: (866) 802-8182
Local: (941) 655-6910
Fax: (941) 366-1603

Hours:

Monday – Friday
8:30 AM – 5:15 PM

Saturday & Sunday Closed