Attractive Nuisance 2

Terrie, thank you for your post. You made some very good points and while it is understandable that a party might feel it to be unfair that they are responsible for neutralizing premises liabilities such as attractive nuisances, I agree with placing the onus on the real property owner to do accomplish this task. I also agree with holding the homeowner liable when he/she is negligent in doing so.

 Here’s why, looking at it objectively, the real estate landscape is simply too broad to place a responsibility solely on the parent or child to know of and avoid each and every attractive nuisance that may exist on each and every piece of real property. In the United States, there are approximately 135 million housing units. [1] While proponents of homeowner attractive nuisance liability might argue that it is logical to state that it is a virtual impossibility for a parent, guardian or child to be subjected to each and every nuisance located on each and every housing unit and because of that fact, the homeowner is in the most advantageous position to know of and be in the best position to take action to neutralize the danger.

For instance, let’s say that the onus was left to me as the parent to eliminate attractive nuisances such as swimming pools located in ten of neighbor’s back yards. How would I accomplish this? Would I simply be empowered to enter onto my neighbor’s property to build a pool enclosure, or drain and fill the pool with soil? What about the real property owner’s right to peaceful enjoyment of their property? Should I be able to force what I consider to be a solution to the attractive nuisance on my neighbor? What if my solution lowered his property value? Should I then be liable for the depreciation? Then what does this do to the promotion of good will and friendship amongst neighbors?

We can see that placing the onus on the parent brings forth so many issues that would violate both public policy and certain constitutional provisions that it is only logical to place the responsibility on the individual real property owner to neutralize the attractive nuisance dangers.

[1] Population estimates, July 1, 2016, (V2016), UNITED STATES QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, (last visited Apr 15, 2017).

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