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Residential pool ownership and liability basics

On Behalf of | Sep 14, 2023 | Wrongful Death

Having a pool at home can give you unlimited access to relaxation. It can even help you get in shape or increase the value of your home. Despite its numerous benefits, pool ownership comes with some work. As the owner, you’d be responsible for its maintenance and the safety of those who use it.

Your responsibilities as a residential pool owner

Premise liability laws require property owners to use “reasonable care” to keep people on their property safe. If they don’t, they could be responsible for any damage that happens.

The state also has a number of regulations for private pool owners, such as the installation of swimming pool alarms, gates and barriers.

Without these safety precautions, pools can be a dangerous place. People can slip and fall, suffer head injuries from diving or kids can fall in and drown. Every year, thousands of people are rushed to the emergency room for near-drowning incidents and other pool-related accidents.

As a swimming pool owner, it is your duty to remove or warn potential users against any known safety hazards involving the pool. Missing barriers, slippery surfaces, unmarked depths and defective equipment are just some of the things that can make pools risky.

When are pool owners liable for death or injury?

Failing to address known issues or meet state regulations could result in an accident. If someone suffers an injury or dies in your pool, they or their family could hold you liable. You might find yourself facing a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit.

Essentially, the only time a pool owner is not liable is when the person who drowned or died is an adult trespasser. You could still be subject to liability if the victim is a child, whether they were trespassers or not.

Any drowning or injuries that occur in your pool can be traumatic. Instead of being a haven for relaxation, your pool would be associated with unpleasant memories. To ensure that your private pool is safe for friends and family, take time to review the state’s safety regulations and do routine maintenance.