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What If I Am I Injured While Trespassing?

Trespassing and Premises Liability | Brooklyn, NY Personal Injury Attorney | Law Offices of David J. Hernandez & AssociatesAs an experienced Brooklyn, New York premises liability attorney, I’ve seen just about every scenario possible related to premises liability law. A question that seems to garner its fair share of debate, however, is one I feel needs to be addressed directly:

“If I trespassed and was injured on the property, do I have a premises liability case?”

This question is one that premises liability attorneys run into more often than you’d expect. To answer it, let’s consult the New York City Bar’s premises liability page.

In general, if you trespass on someone’s property, you are breaking the law. The owner does not owe you a duty of care, meaning that he or she is not liable for your injuries in the event you get hurt by a condition on the property even if he or she was aware of the potentially dangerous condition.

Like nearly all rules, there are exceptions. If the owner of the property knows a trespasser is on his or her property and acquiesces to his or her presence, the owner is now liable just as he or she would be for any other guest.

There is also a doctrine that applies to children and attractive nuisances. For example, if there is condition on the property that, although unsafe, could be attractive to children, the owner is liable for an injury even if the child is an unknown trespasser. An example given by the New York
City Bar is an unfenced pool.

If you have questions about New York premises liability law, contact an experienced Brooklyn premises liability attorney.

Photo Credit: CarbonNYC

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