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An Overview Of Trespasser Injury Claim

The general rule is that you don't deserve compensation for an injury you incurred while trespassing on another person's property. Like many legal issues, however, there are exceptions that may allow you to hold a property owner liable for your trespassing injuries. Below is the rationale for the general rule and an overview of the exceptions.

The Rationale for the General Rule

A property owner is expected to warn visitors of dangerous conditions on their property. This is because the property owner owes a duty of care to the visitors. A trespasser, on the other hand, is an illegal visitor to whom a property owner owes an extremely limited duty of care. Besides, a property owner cannot be expected to anticipate all the potential trespassers who might come to the property. For these reasons, trespassers are usually barred from holding property owners liable for the trespassers' injuries.

The Exceptions

Below are some of the cases that make property owners liable for trespasser injuries.

The Owner Anticipated the Trespassing

A property owner who knows about trespassers on their property should warn the trespassers of any dangers on the property. Consider the example of a homeowner with fruit trees, and the neighborhood kids love to jump over the fence and steal the fruits. If the homeowner has chased away the kids several times, then the homeowner clearly knows about the trespassing. If the homeowner doesn't warn the kids about guard dogs on the property, and the dogs end up biting one of the kids, then the homeowner may be liable for the dog bite.

The Owner Trapped You

The law doesn't expect property owners to keep trespassers safe, but the property is also not expected to make their properties dangerous for trespassers. Consider a homeowner who digs trenches along the fence so that anyone who jumps over the fence can fall in the trench. Such a wanton act makes the homeowner liable for injuries that the trenches might cause to other people.

The Owner Intentionally Hurt You

Lastly, a property owner should not intentionally hurt trespassers if the trespassers don't pose any physical threat to the property owner. Therefore, if a child jumps over the fence to retrieve a ball from a neighbor's home, and the neighbor shoots the kid, the homeowner will be liable for the child's injuries. However, a homeowner who shoots a person trying to kidnap the homeowner's child is not liable for the kidnapper's injuries.

Therefore, don't assume that you don't deserve injury compensation just because you were injured while trespassing. Consult an injury attorney to figure out whether you deserve compensation. You can contact legal professionals like those at Kilgore Smith LLC for more information.

About Me

Choosing The Perfect Counsel

If you have ever been accused of a crime, then you know the absolute sinking feeling in your gut. It can be incredibly devastating to cope with the thought of living the rest of your life behind bars, which is why choosing the perfect counsel is crucial. I started thinking about who to work with a few years ago when I was accused of something that I knew I didn't do, and it was scary. However, I knew that by focusing on my innocence and finding the right professional, things would be manageable. Check out this blog for great information on choosing counsel.

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