As a homeowner, you are legally responsible for keeping your pool safe and secure. You can be held liable if someone is injured or dies on your property, even if that person has trespassed. Your pool is your responsibility, and that involves monitoring it and protecting it from people you do not want to use it. If you do not take reasonable precautions, you can be charged with negligence.
Homeowner’s insurance may not always provide enough coverage if someone is hurt near or in your pool. In cases of child injury or death, homeowners are rarely protected by their insurance. You may have a specific pool insurance policy for swimming pool liability or have an umbrella policy for your home and pool. This will be a deciding factor in whether the injured party can file for insurance or a lawsuit.
What You Can Do About Your Pool
Put up a locked gate around your yard. Keep your pool clean and well lit. Raise a fence or a net around the pool area. Set up signs warning off trespassers. When the pool is not in use, cover it securely with a tarp.
Read your city and state ordinances about residential pool construction and maintenance. If someone is hurt on your property, you will be held strictly liable, so prosecuting lawyers will not need to prove negligence. You can be prosecuted for negligence if you fail to install non-slip surfaces, do not clean up puddles that could easily cause someone to slip and fall, or do not adequately dissuade trespassers.
What You Can Do for Your Family
Children can easily hurt themselves when running around a pool, roughhousing or learning to swim. If you have infants or young children, especially, you need to install a net and/or fence to keep them from getting into the pool. You also need to check for puddles that could cause children to slip and hurt themselves, and never leave a child—whether they are your child, a neighbor’s child or a complete stranger—unattended.
What You Can Do About Trespassers
If someone is harmed while trespassing on your property, you can still be charged through an attractive nuisance loophole. This means you can be held responsible for having something in your yard (i.e. a pool) that interests children, whether or not you give them permission to be in your yard or near your pool.
You can avoid the attractive nuisance loophole by securing your yard. Make sure your locked gates are impossible to scale. Add another layer of protection by placing a fence or a net around your pool. Monitor your yard for trespassers. If you think the neighborhood kids will be a problem, talk to your neighbors about your pool and state in no uncertain terms your conditions about pool use.
Contact Peter Davis Law about Pool Accidents Today!
Pools are a great way to cool off during the summer, but don’t let the fear of injury and prosecution through an attractive nuisance loophole ruin your summer. Take measures to protect yourself and your family from pool accidents by blocking off your pool from trespassers and providing non-slip surfaces along the pool.
If the worst happens and someone is injured using your pool, remember to call Peter Davis Law for support.