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Who Is Liable When a Trick-or-Treater Suffers an Injury?

Halloween is about candy, costumes, and having an all-around good time. Taking your kids trick-or-treating can be a great way to build memories and let your children be creative. Handing out candy at the door can be exciting because you get to witness all kinds of costumes. Halloween can be a night filled with laughter and fun, but there are still risks. Almost every time we leave our homes, there are risks of injury. Halloween trick-or-treating is no exception.

If you or your child suffered an injury on someone’s property, you may be able to sue if the homeowner is liable. A property owner owes their visitors a duty of care. On Halloween night, you and your children are the visitors being invited onto the homeowner’s property. If you sustain an injury on their property, they may have breached the duty of care owed to you. Proving the property owner’s liability must be done through a premises liability claim.

What Is a Premises Liability Claim? 

Premises liability is a legal concept that arises in personal injury cases when injuries occur due to unsafe or defective conditions on someone’s property. Most attorneys base personal injury claims on negligence. Premises liability claims are no different. To win a premises liability case, the injured person needs to prove that the property owner was negligent with regard to ownership and maintenance of the property. Negligence means that the property owner failed to use reasonable care in maintaining their property, resulting in hazardous conditions.

It is crucial to understand that being injured on someone’s property does not automatically mean the property owner is liable. The property may be in an unsafe condition, but that does not guarantee proof of the property owner’s negligence. In a premises liability case, there needs to be proof that the property owner knew or should have reasonably known that the premises were unsafe and still failed to fix the property.

How to Prove Liability in a Premises Liability Case

Proving liability in a premises liability case means proving that the property owner knew or had reasonable knowledge of the hazardous conditions of their property. To establish the negligence of the property owner, the following three questions need answers:

Was the Property Owner Aware of the Unsafe Condition? 

This question establishes whether the owner was aware of the unsafe condition and could have fixed it within a reasonable amount of time. Alternatively, the owner could have warned people that the hazard existed with signage or by closing off the area.

Did the Property Owner Warn Visitors of the Danger? 

Placing a sign near or closing off the area can warn people of a danger. Without proper warning, the property owner fails to perform the duty of care owed to visitors.

Did the Property Owner Try to Fix the Condition? 

Property owners must make a reasonable attempt to repair any dangerous conditions on their property.

How Can an Attorney Help in a Premises Liability Case?

You do not expect to have an accident during a fun Halloween night. Halloween, however, is not without its dangers. If you slip or trip on someone’s property because of unkempt land or unsafe decorations, this can turn the night from fun to overwhelming. Hiring an experienced attorney can help make the situation less overwhelming. An attorney will assess the situation to see if you have a case against the homeowner.

If you have a premises liability case, your attorney will know what evidence is needed and how to use it for your best interests. The attorney may be able to recover compensation for your damages, including:

  • Loss of wages: when the injuries you sustain require you to take time off, or the injuries prevent you from going to work
  • Medical treatment: includes hospital or doctor visits, surgeries, medication, testing, therapies, or any other medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering: compensation for any long-term or short-term physical pain from the injury and the incident

If you suffer an injury on someone’s premises, immediately seek medical attention and document the incident. Before leaving the premises, get the property owner’s information and the contact information of any witnesses. If you are able, photograph the scene. Collecting this information from the accident scene will help your attorney assess and build your potential case.

Suffered an Injury While Trick-or-Treating? Contact a Personal Injury Attorney at Feller & Wendt, LLC

No one ever expects to suffer an injury, especially not on a fun night like Halloween. If you or a loved one are injured during Halloween, contacting an attorney will help you determine whether or not you have a case to receive compensation for your injuries.

At Feller & Wendt, LLC, our team is well-versed in personal injury lawsuits, including slip and fall claims and premises liability claims. We understand the stress that an injury can put on an individual and the individual’s family. Our attorneys will handle the legal proceedings while you focus on healing. We want to help relieve some of the stress on you and your family. We understand the legal process and how to build a case with your best interests in mind. For a free consultation, call (480) 702-2277 or fill out our contact form.

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