Homeowner Liability When Guests or Invitees are Injured
For good reason, mortgage companies require homeowners to maintain insurance coverage for the home and property. If the house burns down, the mortgage company needs to protect home and property assets. A homeowner policy covers more than the home and property, it also covers injuries that happen on the property. A homeowner may be liable to guests on their premises. Guests are referred to in the law as being called licensees. If you are hosting a backyard party and your guest slips and is injured, they make a claim against your homeowner liability insurance policy. The concept is similar to making claims with another person’s automobile insurance policy after an injury-causing traffic accident.
Invitees are similar to guests with the difference of a business purpose. A contractor, landscaper, pest exterminator, and a house painter are all invitees. Homeowners have the highest duty of care to invitees engaged in a business purpose. Homeowners have a duty to inspect their property for dangerous conditions and make repairs to prevent potential injuries.
Liability for the costs of another person’s injuries, whether guests or invitees, depends on the facts and situation, and why the person was at your property when they were injured.
Personal Liability for Injuries at Home
Injuries at home can involve slip and falls, cuts, burns, and more. Pools and trampolines alone are major sources of injuries. Don’t think that only objects can cause injury when many of the homeowner liability claims involve pets. Dogs, cats, and other pets can injure you and your guests. In fact, infections from cat bites have caused life-threatening infections.
You might also like this article with statistics and more information about injuries at home and keeping your home safe for others: Home Accident Statistics: Is Your Home as Safe as You Think?
Common Residential Injuries Can Involve:
- Slip and Fall Accidents from Unsafe Staircases, Floors, Rugs, and Carpet Accidents;
- Bites, Scratches, and Injuries from Pets Including Dogs, Cats, and Other Domestic Pets;
- Driveway, Sidewalk, Tree Limbs, Dangerous Objects Causing Injury; and
- Weather-Related Condititions Including Snow, Ice, and Rain Causing Slips and Falls.
If a personal guest or service technician is injured on your property, your insurance company will expect you to notify them as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more likely your insurance provider may believe the claim is not legitimate and something is wrong.
If you have questions about filing a claim or about anything that happened, call a personal injury attorney. Here at Michael V. Favia & Associates, we take the time to answer all your questions and get you the right information to protect yourself and the injured person.
Insurance Coverage for Homeowner Liability
Based on your needs, there are different homeowner liability insurance policies. Some homeowner policies cover more than others, and with variable competitive premium rates. Basic homeowner’s insurance covers damage to the property and loss if a guest is injured at your home. Higher-level policies cover more than entry-level policies.
When you start a new policy or renew your homeowner liability policy you can discuss with your agent what coverage will best suit you and your family, to cover any claims and insulate you from personal liability for amounts and injuries not covered by the insurance company.
Pursuing and Litigating Claims Against Homeowners
Homeowners, whenever possible, may choose to pay for a guest’s injuries instead of filing a claim with their homeowner’s insurance company. Homeowners may be worried that their insurance company will cancel their coverage or increase their rates in response to making claims against their property.
A homeowner trying to pay an injured person directly in cash may be surprised by the amounts of medical bills and expenses for past, current and future injuries and rehabilitation. While it may strain a relationship, making yourself whole is important.
At Michael V. Favia & Associates, your Chicago injury law firm, we will file and litigate claims against other people’s homeowner insurance policies to reimburse you for your costs associated with your injuries.
Trespassers Versus Renters and Homeowner Liability
Trespassers are people who enter your property without permission, and not for your benefit. A homeowner does not owe a duty to prevent a trespasser injury. It is a very difficult challenge for a trespasser to pursue and win a claim against a homeowner for their injury. Therefore you have no duty to protect a trespasser from injury on your property and in your home, should they somehow gain entry.
Renters are not homeowners, but renters are legal possessors. Depending on the law and facts, tenants could be directly liable to their guests for injuries that occur in the rental unit or rental home. Tenants renting a home are likely liable for injuries that take place in the unit or home because it is under the renter’s control, not the owner. Many homeowners renting out their homes and apartments require a tenant to obtain renters liability coverage, to insure against any losses arising out of injuries on or at the tenant’s controlled dwelling space or building.
Are you worried about trespassers and want the protection of home security cameras? Home security camera systems that record motion-detected audio and/or video can really help you in the event you need evidence of something that happens on your property. The Reviews.com website offers a helpful consumer article, The Best Home Security Systems.
With Any Insurance Questions About Homeowners, Renters, and Injured Parties, Call Chicago Injury Lawyers at Michael V. Favia & Associates at (773) 631-4580
Michael V. Favia is a Chicago personal injury lawyer with decades of experience with all types of negotiations and claims for injuries and losses. Whether you are injured at home, at another’s home as a guest, or driving there or back, we have you covered at the Michael V. Favia & Associates.
You do not pay anything when we take your case and negotiate a settlement with the insurance company or sue and win in court. Don’t wait for an injury to happen before you make us your family’s personal injury law firm. Put is in your phone under “Injury Lawyer Chicago.”
If you are a homeowner with homeowner liability questions and are not sure if you have a policy that will best protect you from personal liability, call us and we can help you with that as well. Be safe and call us with any law or homeowner liability questions.