Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Protection from legal action for accidents

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Protection from legal action for accidents

    We are still waiting for our pool to be installed. Some rain caused some delays this weekend, so I've had time to think about some things.

    How do you all handle liability issues with regard to kids in the pool? My understanding is that if someone gets hurt on your property, you are liable for it. Is this true or is it a myth? What is the best way to limit liability?

    Some suggestions I have heard/read already are:

    - never let children swim unsupervised
    - require the parents of a child to be present and be responsible for their own child
    - post a set of pool rules near the pool and make each child read them before entering
    - have the parents sign a liability release
    - don't allow kids in the pool area at all

    The last one is just not realistic. The other ones are more so. I am just trying to find a balance between limiting my liability and not totally destroying the fun aspect of having a pool.

    Thanks for any advice.
    Doughboy 18x38 AGP buried 2' deep. 18,400 gal. Hayward Power Flo Matrix. Hayward Pro Series High Rate Sand Filter. TF-100 test kit.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
    Posts
    37,879

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Liability is a slippery subject. Make certain you have liability insurance. The first level of protection is to make certain there is nothing that poses an unusual risk above and beyond the risk of having a swimming pool at all. That means having a fence with a gate that is kept locked, making certain your drain covers, if there are drains, are compliant with current rules, that the electrical system is up to code, and taking all of the obvious precautions like that. If there is something obviously dangerous/wrong and you let people swim you will be liable.

    However, even if you take every ordinary precaution you can still be liable in very very rare, extreme, and tragic situations. There have been some very scary court cases, where people who did everything right were held liable for things that no sensible person would consider their fault. When people die tragically, juries do strange things sometimes. That is just the way of the world. If you are totally risk averse, you shouldn't have a pool

    Trying to be more realistic, about plausible precautions: Your first three points are great ideas. However, asking parents to sign a liability release is pushing it in my book. That is very likely to cause social troubles.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    East Texas
    Posts
    9,004

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Guard yourself against the reasonably forseeable things is all you can do. It doesn't take any talent for somebody to be able to sue you these days.
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
    2 Speed Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 85 g.p.m. 22" 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Pool Rover Jr., Pool Blaster Max, Diver Dave TF100 Test Kit/Speed Stir
    Margaritaville Frozen Concoction Maker, Liqour Chiller, & Drink Mixer & Party Tub----Collect 'um all!

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Greentown, IN
    Posts
    914

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Set rules and limitations and expect people to abide by them... if they don't, they don't come back to swim simple as that.

    You have those rules for both your safety (liability) as well as their safety. If they don't like or agree with your rules, they don't have to swim at your pool.

    Also be sure your insurance is aware of your pool and be sure you are up to their regulations for the pool. My insurance company simply wanted us to be in line with our local codes which we were doing anyway, but good to be sure.
    Indiana, ABG 24'x52" Galveston by Blue Cascade (Craigslist buy w/part of deck included), 13,500 gallons, Intex SWG, solar panels mix 2, TF-100 test kit.

    Test kits compared
    Purchase test kits

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    The liability portion of your homeowners will cover anything that happens. If you don't already have an umbrella policy now would be a good time to get one. They're cheap.
    29,000 gallon, concrete pool and spa, SE PA
    Jandy 2HP pump, Raypak 400 heater, Polaris 380

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by bosox1086
    If you don't already have an umbrella policy now would be a good time to get one. They're cheap.
    I'm convinced this is about the only method that will make a difference. Of course if things are not up to code that will cause problems too.

    Our city inspector said that if anything is not up to code your insurance can deny any claims.
    Aaron
    [ Vogue Vectra 24' AG | Hard plumb: Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 1HP 2-speed, 27" sand filter & Pentair MiniMax 100 NG | Taylor K-2006 | Central IL ]
    Powered by: TFP, PoolMath & TFTestkits

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Mickleton, NJ
    Posts
    229

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Def. be sure you have proper permits and are up to code with everything, ie, fences, gates, pool barrier or steps etc. My dh is a lawyer and represents home owner policies. So if you got sued dh would be your man. from the insurance company. Anyway, he hates when people didn't get proper permits because it already shows the person wasn't overly concerned with following proper procedures.

    Since we have everything up to code, my biggest concern is that parents watch their kids when they are in the pool. I'm not afraid to call a parent out either.
    Currently Pooless

    Former Pool:Buster Crabbe resin and steel 30'x15' oval 52" ABG pool Pentair sand dollar filter 1.5 Pentair Dynamo pump13,500 gallons

  8. Back To Top    #8
    texasdad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    DFW Metro
    Posts
    186

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedo
    Quote Originally Posted by bosox1086
    If you don't already have an umbrella policy now would be a good time to get one. They're cheap.
    Our city inspector said that if anything is not up to code your insurance can deny any claims.
    Most city building inspectors are contractors that couldn't cut in on there own so got city jobs. They usually barley know construction practices and are certainly not experts on insurance or legal issues. Your insurance will cover what your policy says it will cover.......... read it.

    Umbrella insurance is a great idea - and it is cheap.
    13k gallon IG gunite pool
    Jandy 2 speed pump
    Jandy cartridge filter
    Stenner Pump and tank

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    18

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Make sure you have an occupancy permit for the pool........
    18000 gal Gunite free form
    Jandy 1 HP pump
    Jandy DEV 48 filter
    Raypak 400 heater
    Goldline Proligic SWCG
    Solaxx chemical feeder
    Dolphin Deluxe 4

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by chucklh
    Make sure you have an occupancy permit for the pool........

    What is this?
    Doughboy 18x38 AGP buried 2' deep. 18,400 gal. Hayward Power Flo Matrix. Hayward Pro Series High Rate Sand Filter. TF-100 test kit.

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Posts
    5,061

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Quote Originally Posted by ROTJob
    Quote Originally Posted by chucklh
    Make sure you have an occupancy permit for the pool........

    What is this?
    They are issued by the city usually after a fire marshal inspection is done. I think that would only apply to a public pool though.

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    18

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    I dont know if all states do this but in Maryland when all of your permits are satisfied, electrical, plumbing, building, you or the pool builder will call for a final inspection in my case I had to do it, they will come out and check that all permits are closed and make sure all safety devices are in place they check everything off and about a week later you will recieve a occupancy permit just like a house you then send a copy of that to your insurance company. Swimming pool codes are very specific inground or above doesnt matter..........
    18000 gal Gunite free form
    Jandy 1 HP pump
    Jandy DEV 48 filter
    Raypak 400 heater
    Goldline Proligic SWCG
    Solaxx chemical feeder
    Dolphin Deluxe 4

  13. Back To Top    #13
    NWMNMom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Waaay NW MN
    Posts
    1,582

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Depends on where you live. Rural people may not have the same requirements as IN city limits. We did make sure of insurance coverage. My rules are the same regardless, parents must supervise their own children, if the childs chin is not above the water while standing, they must wear a life preserver in the pool unless the parent is IN the water with them. I dont care how much they insist that little Billy is a good swimmer
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

  14. Back To Top    #14

    In the Industry

    Donldson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    NW Ohio
    Posts
    2,637

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    For anybody reading this that doesn't know: an Umbrella policy is designed in part to fill in some gaps in your homeowners policy and primarily to give you protection above and beyond your policy. We are usually talking multi-million dollar policies. The good news with that is they are so rarely used (since the home policy is typically enough) that the rates are very cheap per thousand. As long as you are well covered in your homeowners policy, umbrellas can be a great peace of mind at a relative discount. Talk with your agent, there are some companies that only do umbrella policies and so can be recommended freely if your insurance company doesn't work with them.
    JD - 28' Round Above Ground Pool, 17,000 Gallons. Dual speed Jacuzzi pump with cartridge filter. Dual speed 1 HP pump, Hayward S210T sand filter
    Pool School - PoolMath - HIGHLY Recommended Test Kits

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Would this be the same thing as personal liability? I do have that on my policy up to 100K.
    Doughboy 18x38 AGP buried 2' deep. 18,400 gal. Hayward Power Flo Matrix. Hayward Pro Series High Rate Sand Filter. TF-100 test kit.

  16. Back To Top    #16
    texasdad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    DFW Metro
    Posts
    186

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    an umbrella policy would be above and beyond that 100k. Minimum insurance should be equal to your total net worth. A $1million umbrella is cheap.
    13k gallon IG gunite pool
    Jandy 2 speed pump
    Jandy cartridge filter
    Stenner Pump and tank

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    San Antonio
    Posts
    424

    Re: Protection from legal action for accidents

    Typically umbrella policies raise your liability coverage on everything you can have liability on - auto, homeowners, boat, airplane, etc. Most companies will require you maximize your regular policies on all of the above. The reason for having an umbrella is to have coverage in the event of a sky high judgment. Say your homeowners covers liability up to $100,000 and your sued and the jury awards $800,000 - the insurance company pays the $100,000 and you are responsible for the remainder. If you have a $1,000,000 umbrella then your homeowners would pay the first 100K and the umbrella would pay the remaining 700k. The umbrella policy is cheap, but having the maximum on auto and home can cost a few bucks.
    Larry in Texas

    Above ground 7,700 gallons, 19 inch sand filter ( 2 sq. ft.), Liquidator, and a WaterWay Hi-Flo Pump with an A.O. Smith 1 hp SF 1.0 motor.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •