Understanding Liability Issues When Injuries Occur on Your Property

Have you ever wondered whether you would be liable for a guest’s injuries that occurred on your property? While property liability policies may vary, your responsibility for injuries on your property usually depends on a number of factors.

Your Liability May Depend on the Visitor’s Legal Status

Whether or not you are liable for another’s injuries could depend on the legal status of the visitor at the time they were on your property. The three most common status types are the following.

  • Social guests are those whom you invited and welcomed to your property
  • An invitee may be a guest such as a customer in a business
  • A licensee is a guest who has obtained the owner’s permission to enter the property

The Standard of Reasonableness Helps Determine Liability

The degree of liability on the part of the landowner is often determined via the standard of reasonableness, which asks whether the landowner took reasonable precautions. This standard may involve asking questions such as:

  • Did you provide reasonable warning to those entering your property (even those entering illegally, such as trespassers)?
  • Did the person suffer an injury or an accident that was in some way predictable based on the condition of the property?
  • Under what type of circumstances did the guest enter your property?

When determining your degree of property liability in the event of an injury, make sure to review these key factors. In general, your insurance policy and the standard of reasonableness could help answer the question.

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