Do you have an attractive nuisance on your property?
Under Florida law, we have something called the attractive nuisance doctrine. This doctrine imposes a duty upon a landowner to trespassing children where the landowner knew or had reason to know that children were likely to trespass, and where there was a condition upon the land that involved unreasonable risk or death or serious harm to children. Children, who, because of their young age, are not likely to discover the dangerous condition or appreciate the risk involved by meddling with it. In such case, the landowner may be held liable if the child is injured as a result of the dangerous condition.
The owner of any property, whether residential or commercial, should take extra precautions to ensure that his or her property has no condition upon it that would be considered an attractive nuisance to trespassing children. Some examples of things that could be considered attractive nuisances would include:
- Power tools lying about a building under construction.
- Leaving ladders leaning up against the building or a tree
- Unfenced or unenclosed swimming pools.
- Discarded appliances, such as refrigerators.
- Uncovered wells
- Construction sites where children are known to play
- Large piles of loose sand or dirt
- Unlocked motor vehicles
- Lawn mowers and tractors