Reviewing the attractive nuisance doctrine

Summertime in Paterson offers your kids the chance the to enjoy carefree days full of adventure and excitement from all that the local area has to offer. As a parent, however, you often cannot fully enjoy the same benefit. That is because you worry about what your kids might encounter when they are out there having fun (specifically those attractions that might harm them when they are out there having fun). Many parents have come to us here at the Law Office of Scirocco & Marotta after their kids have been hurt by one of these attractions wondering what (if any) legal recourse is available to them. 

Like them, you will be comforted to learn that the attractive nuisance doctrine places the responsibility for protecting kids from dangerous attractions on the owners of the properties on which they are located. Per the Cornell Law School, this doctrine is based on the assumption that children (especially little children) lack the comprehension needed to understand the the risks that certain attractions pose). Therefore, property owners can be held liable if and when those attractions cause injuries it children. 

This holds true even if your child was on a person’s property without permission. For example, if your child sees a person’s swimming pool and goes near it (even if the pool owner has not invited them) and falls in and is injured or drowns, the pool owner is legally responsible. This is due to the attraction of the pool to your child being greater than any reservations they may have about going near it. If, however, the pool owner has reasonably tried to restrict access to it (like putting a fence around it), they may be absolved of liability. 

More information on assigning liability in personal injury cases can be found throughout our site. 

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