Everything You Need To Know About The Attractive Nuisance Doctrine

Swimming pool in luxury property
Madeleine Jones
July 30, 2020

We all remember when we were kids and we would get into trouble one way or another on a regular basis. We just wanted to have fun. However, we did not fully understand the consequences our actions had. Many of us learned the hard way after our parents discovered our mischiefs. Unfortunately, many children have had to pay a heavier price than punishment when they have trespassed onto a property and got severely injured as a result. Especially if it was caused by an attractive nuisance.

Your Legal Options For Parents Of An Injured Child

There are legal options available for the parents of these badly injured children. Many people wouldn’t think there are because of the fact that their kids entered someone else’s property illegally. However, there are exceptions to premises liability laws in Nevada. 

Generally, a property owner is supposed to protect themselves from liability by protecting others from any foreseeable harm. Premises liability laws in Nevada state that a person can pursue legal remedies after being injured on someone else’s property. This person has to have been on the said property legally and with permission. On the other hand, a person who trespasses a property does not have the same legal rights. This is because the property owner was not able to foresee that person’s entry to the property. In Nevada, however, there is an exception to that trespasser rule, and its called the doctrine of attractive nuisance. 

Swimming pool with sun loungers along with shade umbrellas

What Is the Doctrine Of Attractive Nuisance?

An attractive nuisance doctrine comes into play when a particular feature of a property is too enticing for children to avoid and they get injured. This doctrine recognizes that kids (especially small ones) do not have the comprehension needed to avoid attractions that are potentially dangerous to them (for example pools, construction sites, and abandoned buildings). Consequently, the property owner where these nuisances are found cand be held responsible if your kid is injured by them.

Understanding the Property Owner’s Responsibility

The doctrine of attractive nuisance requires property owners to take the necessary precautions to protect children from these attractive nuisances, even children trespass. It is under this doctrine that property owners can be held legally responsible for injuries to a child considering different factors, including:

  • The victim/trespasser is a child
  • The condition is artificial
  • It is a condition a child would want to use or play with
  • The child lacks the comprehension to see the danger
  • The property owner should understand what makes the conditions dangerous
  • The time and expense necessary to protect children from injury are small compared to the potential injuries
  • The condition could be safer if reasonable measures are taken

A swimming pool is a great example of this type of condition. Children are drawn to play in swimming pools, however, they can easily down without supervision. A property owner can install a small fence around the swimming pool or backyard so children can not climb. This would be considered adequate protection. If the property has a lake, which is a natural occurrence, the property owner has no responsibility to add this type of protective measures.

Do you want to learn more about the personal injury claim process? Add your email below and we will send you our guide free of charge. It includes useful tips on things to avoid when going through a personal injury claim.

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Proving Evidence To Establish An Injury Claim

If your child was injured in someone else’s property and you want to submit a claim you will need to prove the following:

  • Your child’s mental development and age hindered them from realizing the risks created by the dangerous condition
  • The property owner was aware of the risk to children even if they didn’t warn so
  • The owner has a benefit in keeping an artificial item or condition as lawful use of their property and the cost of getting rid of the dangerous condition is small compared to the danger it creates for children
  • The property owner failed to warn about or eliminate the dangers of the object or condition. 

The statute of limitations in Nevada for personal injury lawsuits, including attractive nuisance is two years from the date of the accident.

Attractive Nuisance Doctrine Attorney In Las Vegas

Property owners need to be aware of a situation where children may want to explore things even if they are dangerous. They should take the necessary steps to prevent that exploration from taking place. The law will provide children with more leeway because they don’t know much about the world as adults do. If your kid was injured on someone else’s property, make sure you contact Cogburn Law personal injury lawyers in Las Vegas. To schedule a free consultation, call (702) 748-7777 today!

After my kid sneaked over to our neighbor’s house to jump on their trampoline and got injured, we didn’t know what to do. A friend of ours recommended Jamie at Cogburn Law and I can’t thank them enough. We got compensation for my kid’s injury and medical treatment. Would recommend 100%

Jessica S.