Guests, service providers and even solicitors might try to take legal action against a homeowner because they’ve been hurt while visiting someone’s home. Anyone who owns property experiences some degree of liability risk should other people get injured while at their property.
Most people have a least some financial protection against such claims in the form of homeowner’s insurance. Homeowner’s insurance policies do provide premises liability coverage that diminishes the risk of an individual needing to pay directly for an injury-related claim.
Of course, a successful claim made by an injured party could very well lead to significantly increased insurance premiums for a homeowner. Often, those who wish to contest claims about an injury at their home will need to fight the idea that they were negligent as a way to fight the claim made by someone who allegedly sustained harm while on their property.
Why negligence matters
The right of one party to take legal action against another for property damage and injury-related losses largely relies on the responsible party doing something illegal or negligent that puts others at risk. When someone makes a premises liability claim, there are often allegations of negligent property maintenance. Establishing that a homeowner did what was reasonable to maintain the property and keep it safe for visitors could help undermine claims of negligence. If a reasonable person would agree that a homeowner tried their best to maintain the property of appropriately, then the situation may not meet the necessary standard for a negligence claim.
It may also be possible to establish that the party that got hurt did something inappropriate, like trespassing, which could affect the validity of their claim. Premises liability claims may not be possible in scenarios where someone intentionally violated the law. Additionally, factors like intoxication or horseplay could reduce the likelihood of a plaintiff making a successful claim based on the negligence of a homeowner.
Injuries on private property often lead to civil litigation, and insurance companies may then cover the costs that result. Understanding how to push back against claims of negligence as a property owner may help those worried about the financial impact of someone getting hurt at their home.