It’s almost Halloween – a time for costumes, candy, and haunted houses. But beware – legal liability can be hiding in the shadows if you’re not careful. Don’t end up with a trick instead of a treat this All Hallows’ Eve. Here are some tips to keep yourself out of hot water.
When you leave that porch light on, you’re extending an invitation to cute trick-or-treaters to come up your walkway. Be sure that there are no obstacles in the way that could trip them up, such as loose flooring or shaky railings. Before the big night, give your property a full inspection and take care of any necessary repairs. Better safe than sued!
Beware the Scare
While a good fright is part of the Halloween spirit, exercise caution when doing so. Make sure kids have enough space to escape from hazards like highways and ledges if you’re going all out with your scary props. And perhaps keep the crazy people with the chainsaws back a few feet or so. You don’t want someone to get hurt and blame you for being careless.
Curb the Curses
It’s tempting to charge the scene and give trick-or-treaters a real scare. However, shocking someone can put you in legal hot water. Toss out a “Boo!” and run, but do so in a place that’s safe and away from potential threats. Recognize your audience as well; anything that amuses a sixteen-year-old might make a six-year-old cry. If in doubt, go with amiable décor, costumes, and “oh-so-scary” background noise.
Inspect that Candy
Even though the urban legends surrounding contaminated Halloween candy are mostly unfounded, it never hurts to double-check your supply to make sure nothing unusual is present before sharing it. Verify the packing is undamaged and free of strange holes or stains. A speedy examination can avert a possible catastrophe (as well as legal troubles).
Safety on the roads
Children may dart out into the street unexpectedly. Slow down and watch closely for kids crossing the street or appearing between parked cars. Drive at 5 mph or less in residential areas. Be sure to keep your full attention on the road. Avoid using your cell phone and don’t play loud music that could prevent you from hearing pedestrians. Scan driveways and sidewalks thoroughly. Make sure your headlights, backup lights, and windshield wipers are working properly so you can see clearly.By taking extra care and using common sense safety tips, we can make sure kids have a safe and fun evening.
Have fun, be safe
This Halloween, you can avoid liability concerns by using common sense and the advice in this article. Enjoy those tips and treats now! Just use common sense and keep yourself safe. But if the unexpected happens and you or a loved one suffers an injury through no fault or negligence of your own, contact a compassionate, experienced attorney who will investigate the details, answer your questions, and help you understand your legal options. We’re here to provide caring counsel when you need it most.
Wishing you a safe and happy Halloween! Have fun and make memories.