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3.9-5  Status of Parties - Children

Revised to January 1, 2008

If certain conditions are present, the law imposes upon the possessor of land the duty to take reasonable care to safeguard children from danger even if they are trespassers on the property.

The conditions which must all be present to give rise to this duty are these:

  1. the injury suffered by the child must be due to some structure, thing or other artificial condition on the premises;

  2. the place where the condition exists is one upon which the possessor knows or has reason to know that children are likely to trespass;

  3. the condition is one that the possessor knows of or of which the possessor has reason to know;

  4. the condition is one that the possessor realizes or should realize involves an unreasonable risk of death or serious bodily harm to such children;

  5. children coming on the premises, because of their youth, would not discover the thing or condition, or realize the risk of meddling with it or coming within the area made dangerous by it;

  6. the utility of maintaining the condition as it is and the burden of eliminating the danger by changing it or safeguarding it, are slight as compared with the risk to children; and

  7. the possessor fails to exercise reasonable care to eliminate the danger or otherwise protect the children.


Duggan v. Esposito, 178 Conn. 156, 158-59 (1979), citing Restatement (Second), Torts 339 (1965); see also Morin v. Bell Court Condominium Assn., Inc., 223 Conn. 323, 332-33 (1992).


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