Halloween Lawsuits


Many scary things can happen on Halloween. In addition to facing scores of costumed ghouls and ghosts, you can also get slammed with a lawsuit if someone gets hurt on your property.

While such a risk exists every day, it is heightened on a day like Halloween when dozens of children and their parents go door to door trick-or-treating. More pedestrians walking near or on roads in the dark, more visitors to each household and potentially hazardous decorations all mean higher chance of someone getting hurt.

To protect visitors to your home, as well as yourself, this Halloween make sure that your walkway is well lit and your lights are turned on. Any walkway, steps, or pathway should also be cleared from any obstructions. You certainly don’t want someone tripping and falling in the dark, or slipping on wet leaves. Set up your decorations with pedestrian traffic in mind. Put away anything a child could trip over such as toys, bikes, garden tools or decorations. If it is windy, secure anything that can be turned into a flying “missile.”

While nothing gives quite the same spooky ambiance as a candle light, keep in mind that lit candles can pose huge fire hazard, so never leave any lit candles unattended or near flammable objects. Same goes for electrical lights, never staple, nail through or fasten electrical wires or expansion cords in any way that might damage the wire or insulation. Plug all outdoor lights and decorations into ground circuit interrupters to help reduce the risk of electric shock. Restrain your pets so they do not inadvertently jump on or bite any trick-or-treaters.

Last but not least, also think about vandalism. A smashed pumpkin may not be such a big deal, but a broken window, eggs all over your front door, or smashed lights can be. Again, good lighting may go a long way to discourage wannabe burglars or vandals. Keeping your shrubs and hedge trimmed can also aid in preventing trespassers damaging your property.

But no matter how you plan to celebrate Halloween this year, don’t let a potential lawsuit cramp your spooky fun!

About teperlaw

I am an attorney practicing family law, immigration and wills and estate planning. You can find out more about me and my firm by visiting my website at: www.teperlaw.com 106 W. Franklin Ave. Pennington, NJ 08534 (609) 737-3030
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