Adding certain structures on a property could help make a home look special, and some Illinois property owners keep things in their driveways or lawns for other reasons besides looks, such as for exercise and recreation. Homeowners have much leeway to do what they want, but they need to be mindful of “attractive nuisance” additions to a property.
Attractive nuisances and their dangers
An attractive nuisance is something legally present on someone’s property that presents a potential danger. The nuisance proves “attractive” to children, who may venture onto the property and suffer harm. Property owners who don’t take steps to reduce the risks to children’s safety could face a premises liability claim.
A swimming pool and a trampoline are two things that may lead young kids to venture closer and into danger. A child could drown in a pool or suffer a terrible injury falling off a trampoline. Leaving these things unsecured, unattended and easily accessible might reflect the homeowner’s negligence.
Other attractive nuisances
Leaving tools on the ground, even behind a locked fence, may draw attention from curious-minded children. A fountain might not be as inviting as a swimming pool, but young kids might wish to play in the water and suffer a fall. Homeowners with kids may have swing sets, tree houses, sports training equipment and even toys in the yard. Leaving these items out and in view of others might attract neighborhood kids.
Homeowners need to remember that trespassing laws might not apply when underage kids enter a property with an attractive nuisance. However, homeowner insurance policies may cover losses associated with any injuries. Policyholders should check their exclusions to be sure.
An attorney may help a client with an injured child file a premises liability lawsuit or insurance claim. The attorney may help their client review all medical bills and related injury expenses to determine appropriate compensation.