So you’re always careful and maintain your house in good order to avoid potential insurance claims. Have you considered the fact that if you don’t properly maintain your sidewalks and steps that you could be inviting a claim?
Slip and falls make up one of the biggest reasons for liability insurance claims. Did you know that if someone slips and falls on a sidewalk in front of your house they could sue you for negligence? Injuries could include: fractures, internal injuries, concussions and dislocations, not to mention brain injuries. Damages can be awarded not only for pain and suffering, but could also include negligence and lost wages.
The good news is that your insurance company will defend you against a suit. Most homeowner policies include coverage from one million to two million dollars coverage for liability.
Property owners have a responsibility to ensure their premises, including their sidewalks are well maintained and clear of any slip and fall hazards. City bylaws require that sidewalks are cleared of snow and ice within 24hrs of a snowfall; however the law requires that you provide a “reasonable” standard of care considering the circumstances and conditions. Which basically means that if most of the street has their sidewalks cleared and you don’t you could be opening yourself up to a claim.
Mark Carruthers is a Registered Insurance Broker with Pioneer Insurance Brokers in Kitchener, Ontario.