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Children, attractive nuisances and premises liability

As hard as we may try, we cannot always keep our children safe from harm. This is particularly so for kids who are old enough to play in the neighborhood. Even though parents typically drill their children on safety hazards while away from home, some kids find certain properties irresistible. These are often called attractive nuisances and they can pose unforeseen dangers to Maryland children.

wandering child.jpg

The term, attractive nuisance, refers to properties that attract children. It is also a legal doctrine victims can use to hold property owners accountable for child injuries. Even if the child enters the property uninvited, which essentially makes him or her a trespasser, the attractive nuisance doctrine may still apply in a premises liability claim. The list below contains several examples of attractive nuisances.

-- Animals

-- Swimming pools

-- Wells

-- Tunnels

-- Machinery

-- Stairs

-- Pathways

The attractive nuisance doctrine holds all property owners in Maryland to a duty to protect children who might enter the property. In other words, property owners who know that there is an attractive nuisance on their premises are required to take steps to keep kids away. The law knows that children wander and that they are not always aware of property dangers. This doctrine gives families a way to seek compensation for any injuries their children suffer on another person's property.

Of course, educating your children about property hazards and teaching them never to enter another person's premises uninvited will go a long way to increasing safety. However, this tactic does not always work the way we as parents intend. Our advice to parents with an injured child is to explore the attractive nuisance doctrine with an attorney. Read more about premises liability on our blog and our website.

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The Malloy Law Firm concentrates on helping injured people and their families put their lives back together. We can help you get the medical care and compensation you need.

Malloy Law Offices, LLC
4630 Montgomery Avenue
Suite 230
Bethesda, MD 20814

Toll Free: 866-271-5772
Phone: 202-618-1867
Fax: 888-607-8691
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