Pool parties are fun for the whole family, but unfortunately, they are not without their risks. One such risk is a slip-and-fall injury, which can bring with it severe, even life-altering injuries or death. And, while it may be an uncomfortable conversation, you may wonder if you can sue your neighbor because the fall happened at their pool.
In our state, slip-and-fall accidents are covered by Florida Statute, Section 768.0755. That law mandates that property owners are liable for all fall injuries that occur if the property owner knew or should have known of the dangerous condition that caused the fall, but they failed to fix it or warn their visitors. In other words, this means that if you sue your neighbor, you will need to prove that they negligently failed to maintain the pool area or failed to warn you of the danger that caused your fall.
What causes pool-related hazards?
Pool-related hazards can cause slip and fall accidents. For example, the concrete or tiling surrounding the pool could be slippery, which caused you to fall. There could be cracked or uneven tiles or concrete that caused you to trip and fall. If there are loose or broken railings or ladders, both could cause injuries. Missing drain covers, insufficient lighting, debris, etc. are all pool-related hazards that could cause a slip-and-fall accident.
Connecting the pool-related hazard to your neighbor
If you can show that your neighbor was responsible for the pool-related hazard, did not take reasonable steps to mitigate it or warn you, then, you may have a valid slip-and-fall accident claim. Just having a claim is not enough to receive compensation, and you also may have contributed to your injury, which could affect your claim as well.
Florida’s comparative negligence rule
In our state, we have what is known as the comparative negligence rule. This rule means that your fault percentage can reduce the amount of damages. The most common way this occurs is if you were running around the pool or wearing the wrong type of footwear for the pool. If so, a jury could find that your fall was partly your fault. Though, this just reduces the amount you are awarded, and it does not fully stop any lawsuit.