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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Criminal Law
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Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I own rental property on which is located a swimming pool.

Resolved Question:

I own rental property on which is located a swimming pool. If the tenant opens the pool and there is an accident and someone is seriously hurt or drowned whose responsibility is it. Mine as the landlord or hers as the tenant All located in North Carolina
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Ely replied 4 years ago.

This depends - was the pool somehow dangerous or malfunctioning?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
It is abut 25 yrs. old and in fragile condition. The liner needs replacing, the side of pool has been rigged to help keep the liner in place. She has teenage boys living with her who are unsupervised during the day while she is at work and they have friends who are in and out of their house at present time. The pump needs reconditioning with new sand and general all over maintenance.But I am afraid the boys and friends being alone all day will get in trouble with it, finish demolishing the liners, fall or get caught in the bottom drain. I do not know of any actual malfunctions buy it could be dangerous.
Expert:  Ely replied 4 years ago.
Thank you.

First of all, we discuss the duty that is owed.

The guests are "licensees." The duty of care owed to a licensee by an owner or possessor of land ordinarily is to refrain from doing the licensee willful injury and from wantonly and recklessly exposing him to danger. McCurry, 90 N.C.App. at 645, 369 S.E.2d at 392. Thus, a licensee enters another's premises at his own risk and enjoys the license subject to its concomitant perils. See Turpin v. Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church, 20 N.C.App. 580, 583, 202 S.E.2d 351, 353 (1974).

But who is liable - landlord or tenant? Or both? Both are "owners." In NC, it is not quite clear. Both can be held liable, and then it is up to the jury to determine who was more responsible and what percentage of fault they are in.

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