During this time of year, many of us visit friends and family for at least a day, if not a few days. While many of us consider premises liability issues — such as anything that might cause slip and fall accidents or injuries on our properties — when we are hosts, we sometimes forget that when we go away we also have a responsibility to ensure that our homes are safe and secure. Here are some ways to avoid premises liability issues when you are away:
1) Make sure that areas leading up to and away from your home are kept clean and clear in your absence. Delivery personnel, your mail carrier, and other business related persons might still need access to your property when you are away. If one of these people is injured while you are away, you could still be held liable if you do not take proper steps to ensure that your property is safe while you’re away. If you need to, consider hiring someone to check in on the property.
2) Secure your pool. If you have a pool, check and double-check to ensure that it is correctly secured. Keep in mind that if a curious child wanders onto your property and this results in a pool accident or near drowning incident, you could be held liable if you did not take proper precautions to secure the area. Ensure that your pool is surrounded by a fence and a locked gate.
3) Secure your property. Keeping your property safe from intruders not only provides you with peace of mind while you’re away, but it can help prevent serious legal ramifications in case a child or teenager wanders onto your property and becomes injured while you are away. If you have a security system, make sure that it is activated before you leave. Consider adding timer lights to your property so that it does not look empty.
5) Consider hiring someone to stay at your home if you will be way for an extended period of time. Consider hiring a service or having a loved one stay at your home for a few days. This will help prevent possible break in, and will ensure that your property is correctly looked after.