Trespasser defense is one of the arguments available to homeowners whose negligence leads to other people's injuries. However, this defense is not available in all injury situations so you should take appropriate measures to prevent injuries in your homestead. For example, you may not succeed with the trespasser defense if:
Your Property Handles Regular Trespassers
By nature of their location, some properties handle more trespassers than others. For example, if your land is located close to a park, and the boundary is not clearly demarcated, then people are likely to stray into your property. In such a case, you need to take extra precautions to warn potential trespassers of the dangerous conditions on your property.
For example, if you keep dangerous pets, then you should post warnings to that effect. If you don't do this and a pet attacks a trespasser, then you may be held liable for the injuries.
You Have Attractive Nuisance
You may also be liable for trespassers' injuries if you have attractive objects on your property, and these objects attract a child who then gets injured. This is known as the attractive nuisance doctrine, which is based on the assumption that the natural curiosity of children will attract them to certain objects.
Children are attracted to peculiar things such as swimming pools, piles of sand, and automobiles, among other things. Therefore, if you have an object that would attract an average child, then you should take precautions to keep children, even those who trespass on your property, safe. For example, you should fence your pool and make it difficult for any child to reach it. Therefore, you may pay for damages caused by an attractive nuisance if you didn't take the necessary precautions to shield it from trespassers.
Your Willful and Wanton Conduct Causes the Injury
Lastly, you may be held liable for trespasser injuries that are caused by your willful and wanton conduct. For example, even if you live close to a park and people routinely stray onto your lands. Suppose that, to deter the trespassing, you dig a trench and cover it up so that trespassers can fall into the hole and get trapped. This is a willful and wanton conduct that will attract personal injury charge even if the victim is a clear trespasser.
Therefore, you shouldn't assume that you are safe from a personal injury lawsuit just because the victim was trespassing on your property. Consult a personal injury lawyer like one from Bishop Dorfman Lazaroff & Meehan PC to evaluate the circumstances of the accident and help you with a solid defense.