How to Prepare for Halloween and Avoid a Personal Injury Claim at Your Home

For many people, Halloween is one of the highlights of the year. It’s a time for family, friends and neighbors to dress up in fun costumes and enjoy each other’s company. Unfortunately, it can also be dangerous if you don’t take the proper precautions – and if an accident occurs on your property, you could be held responsible for it. Keep your guests safe (and avoid the potential for personal injury liability) by following these home safety tips.

Make sure any pathways are well-lit and unobstructed.

You might be tempted to lower the lights in your yard to create a spookier atmosphere, but doing so can cause problems for visitors (especially if they’re wearing costumes that partially obstruct their vision). Ensure that any pathways to your door are brightly lit and free of any potential slip or trip hazards like rocks, leaves, and decorations (including pumpkins, which are very slippery when broken). Having a well-lit path to your door offers the extra bonus of encouraging guests to stick to the path and not trample your yard, too.

Consider adding treads to your steps.

It doesn’t typically get icy here in Baltimore until later in the year, but stairs can still be treacherous at night. If you have steps leading up to your front door, adding treads to them can help prevent slips.

Keep your pets away from visitors.

Even the friendliest pets can be frightened by all of the noise and excitement of Halloween, and you don’t want them doing anything to inadvertently harm your guests as a result. Keep them inside during trick-or-treating, or block off a portion of your house for them to roam undisturbed while you’re hosting a party.

Only hand out pre-packaged, store-bought treats.

Resist the temptation to give homemade goodies to trick-or-treaters. If someone gets sick after eating something you made, you might get blamed for it. (And a lot of parents force their kids to throw out items that aren’t store-bought out of an abundance of caution anyway).  

Encourage (and enforce) responsible partying.

If you’re planning an adult party and serving alcohol, you have some additional concerns you’ll need to address. Drinking can affect people’s judgement and make them more susceptible to injury… and you could be held liable for those injuries as a result. Encourage your partygoers to be responsible with their drinking, and make sure no one drives home drunk. And, of course, don’t let anyone drink alcohol in your home if they’re under 21.

If a personal injury occurs at your home and you need advice, contact the Law Offices of Nicholas Parr in Baltimore, MD today to schedule your free consultation. We don’t receive a fee unless we win.