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Attractive Nuisance Could Get You In Legal Trouble

feldman_amy Amy Feldman
Amy E. Feldman is a business commentator and legal business...
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By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Do you have to be drunk to find a nuisance attractive? Well it helps.

Toronto firefighters were called to free a college student from a safe that, on a dare, he’d crawled into then got stuck inside. Did I mention he was inebriated?

It’s a known fact that alcohol makes people look more attractive; apparently it does the same to hazards on a property which, with or without alcohol, pose a real danger. In the US, there is a legal principle called an attractive nuisance. (Nope, it’s not the drunk at the party who dares you to do something dangerous.) It’s a dangerous condition on a property – like an unenclosed swimming pool or a dumped refrigerator or an open safe – that is so interesting that it would tend to lure a child to investigate.

So if you know that your property has an attractive nuisance on it, you need to get it fixed because you can be sued for it if a child – even one who is trespassing – gets hurt by it.

Whether a drunken college student should have known better would be up to a jury and his fraternity brothers to decide.

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