Winter in Chicago can be fun. Ice skating and playing in the snow are common pastimes during the winter months. Nevertheless, winter does come with its share of inherent dangers and risks. Ice falling from skyscrapers and slippery sidewalks can make it dangerous to get around in our fair city during the winter months.
Illinois law limits the liability of home and business owners when it comes to snow and ice on sidewalks. Property owners cannot be held liable for snow, ice, or water that accumulates naturally on their sidewalks and driveways. Furthermore, they cannot be held liable for conditions that result from conventional snow or ice removal methods. The only way to fully understand your rights is to confer with an experienced Chicago personal injury lawyer.
Premises owners, managers, and others responsible for keeping the conditions safe on and around their property can only be held liable for injuries that occur due to unnatural accumulations of snow and ice. For example, if someone clears their driveway and piles the snow onto the sidewalk, they may be responsible for any injury that occurs due an individual navigating over or past the pile of snow.
Even though the law provides immunity to liability when it comes to snow and ice removal, this immunity does not extend to defective conditions or inadequate maintenance of a property. For example, if a walkway is broken or damaged, and a layer of snow is camouflaging these defects, the property owner may be liable if someone trips and injures themselves due to these conditions.
These rules apply to a wide variety of situations including gutters leaking onto the sidewalk and freezing, improper drainage that causes ice dams, and more. Therefore, it is important to speak with a knowledgeable premises liability lawyer if you or someone you care about has been injured due to snow or ice.
While you cannot file a claim against your employer if you fall on the ice or snow while entering or leaving the workplace, you may be able to file a worker’s compensation claim to offset your medical bills and lost wages.
Shea Law Group
At Shea Law Group, our team of dedicated legal experts has the knowledge and experience necessary to help you understand your legal rights in these sometimes-complicated situations. Reach out to us at (877)-365-0040, or fill out a contact form online-and don’t worry, we never charge a dime unless we win for you.