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Who is liable for a child’s playground injuries in New Jersey?

On Behalf of | May 29, 2022 | Premises Liability

Children enjoy spending time in playgrounds and parks. Typically, these locations remain in good repair and reasonably free of injury hazards.

Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that children are 100% safe from harm when using a playground. Who will pay for injuries a child suffers in a New Jersey playground? It depends on who owns the property.

Disturbing statistics

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some 200,000 children suffer playground injuries requiring emergency medical treatment each year. About 45% of playground accidents result in one or more of the following:

  • Internal injuries
  • Severe fractures
  • Dislocations
  • Concussions
  • Amputations

About 75% of these injuries occur on public playground property — most of them at daycare centers and public schools.

Responsibility varies

Playgrounds and parks require proper maintenance and care to remain safe for use by children. Legal responsibility is typically as follows:

  • City playgrounds: the municipality
  • Private playgrounds: the property owner
  • School playgrounds: the school

Examples of negligent playground conditions that can lead to injury include:

  • Rusted, damaged or broken equipment
  • Lack of adequate supervision (especially at a school)
  • Damaged and uneven foot surfaces
  • Lack of safe surfaces (in case of a fall)

If a defect in playground equipment led to the accident, the manufacturer of the equipment or its parts might be legally liable for a child’s injury.

What are your options for recovering compensation?

If the injury involves negligence, you may pursue a premises liability or product liability (for defective equipment) claim. It’s wise to learn more about accident and injury compensation to make the most of your claim.