Halloween can be such a fun time of year. Traditionally, Halloween has been especially popular with the younger crowd, but you may have noticed that it is becoming increasingly popular with adults as well. There are more and more decorations around the neighborhood, and people of every age are getting in on the fun. When you’re planning your Halloween party this year, safety should also be at the forefront of your mind. Ideas to minimize liability in your home and yard should be at the top of your priority list.
So how can you minimize liability as the holiday season kicks off? What kinds of things should you pay special attention to? There may be more to it than you initially might have thought. Let’s dive in!
Minimize Liability and Increase Safety on Your Property
If you own a home, you have a responsibility to those who come onto your property to provide a safe environment. You even have this “duty of care” for people like small children who wander onto your property without supervision. Don’t panic yet.
Providing a safe space and property may feel very overwhelming to the typical homeowner. It sounds like a lot of responsibility is put on you as a homeowner, right? So, what are some things that you can do to keep your friends, family, and others that visit safe while keeping yourself safe from potential liability as well? First, look at a few steps you can take to reduce potential accidents on your property.
- Look for possible danger areas on your property. There are so many accidents that happen in the simplest areas. A walkway, a stairwell, kids’ play areas, or swimming pools are some of the most common. While most areas where people have accidents seem apparent, others aren’t so much. Yes, people can fall down the stairs or drown in a pool, but what about those Halloween decorations that cause someone to trip and fall? These are places to watch and keep safe in order to minimize liability as well. Take a walk around your property and make notes of places that could be potential risks, and work on addressing any issues that you find.
- Even small additions or changes can be a big help. Consider adding additional light to darker areas, remove rugs that could be tripped on during a Halloween Party, and watch for spills that occur during celebrations that could make someone slip and get injured. If your stairwells don’t have handrails, add them to ensure people are able to grip something as they go up and down your stairs. Remove any kind of clutter, even if it’s meant to be festive, from walkways and stairwells to keep those who use them free from harm. Most of these changes aren’t hard, but you’ll be glad you don’t have to sweat the small stuff when you have your loved ones over for upcoming fun.
- If you have a pool, you want to do all you can to prevent anyone, especially a young child, from being able to wander into the pool area. Installing a fence that surrounds your pool should be a top priority to minimize liability for yourself. Install locks that kids can’t open, and make sure your pool deck isn’t cluttered with things to trip on and injure someone that is there to enjoy the pool.
- Keep outside lights on in the evening and at night to ensure visitors can see where they are walking, especially if there are a lot of people out trick-or-treating in your area this Halloween. Be sure they won’t be tripping on anything as they come your way.
- Install a fence around your property and home to prevent unwanted visitors. This will improve your home security and bring you peace of mind.
- Water your lawn and bushes at night so that there isn’t standing water or slippery spots when guests come over.
- Invest in outdoor cameras that allow you to see all areas of your property. You’ll not only be able to keep an eye on things but having video footage of an injury or accident can protect you if someone tries to make you liable for their injuries.
- If you will be serving alcohol at your Halloween celebration, don’t let your friends drive drunk. Remind your guests that they need a designated driver at the beginning of the night and even have taxis, Uber drivers, or other friends available to drive. Remember, you could be held liable if they were to leave your party drunk and injure someone else. So watch out for yourself and your friends on this one!
- If there are existing dangers present that you’ve addressed as well as you can, post signs informing others of the threat. This alone may minimize liability in the future by showing that you made an effort to warn others of the danger.
A Team on Your Side
If you find yourself needing a lawyer because you are being held liable for an accident, hire a lawyer. Or perhaps you are the one that was injured on someone else’s property, Gainsburgh, Benjamin, David, Meunier & Warshauer, L.L.C. is the experienced legal team ready to represent you.
A legal battle can be messy, and there are so many details to know and do in the process. The stress from trying to represent yourself and gather needed information can be overwhelming, and if it’s not done right, it can cost you your case.
You want to be sure that the person that is truly at fault is held liable whether the accident was on your property or someone else’s. You do what you can to minimize liability, but it’s not always possible. Our attorneys have the knowledge to help protect you as well as recover damages that are owed to you. Call us at (504) 522-2304.