Our Atlanta wrongful death lawyers know that losing a loved one is one of the toughest things to go through, but that difficulty seems even crueler when the loss is of a child. But that is what Jacob and Patti Peters have had to deal with for the past two years, since the death of their nine year old son Jakob. And now, according to news reports, the grieving parents have filed a wrongful death lawsuit, trying to get some belated justice for their son.
In June 2011, Jakob was swimming in a man-made pond when he stepped on a channel, fell underwater, and drowned. The pond was on land owned by Barney Parnacott, who is a Dawson City Manager. And now Jacob and Patti Peters are suing Mr. Parnacott for the wrongful death of their son, saying he did not take proper precautions on his property. The lawsuit claims that Mr. Parnacott knew kids nearby had access to the pond and that, even if they were trespassing on his land, he should have used safety measures like a fence, or should have gotten rid of the pond.
In this, the family is using the “attractive nuisance” doctrine, which exists in law for situations just like this. Under the “attractive nuisance” doctrine, a landowner is liable for injuries to a trespassing child if the injuries were caused by a dangerous man-made thing that naturally attracts children. The doctrine is meant to make landowners think ahead and anticipate children coming onto the property by taking precautions like barriers or fences. Georgia has been quite strict in applying this doctrine in the past, and conditions must be met in order for it to be applicable. The owner must know children are likely to trespass, he/she must know that the thing in question poses an unreasonable risk to any such trespassing children, the children don’t realize the risk, the burden to the landowner of eliminating the risk is slight compared to the potential harm to children, and the landowner fails to take reasonable care to eliminate the danger. All of these conditions must be met in order for the “attractive nuisance” doctrine to be applicable to an accident like Jakob’s. We will have to see what the court decides on this issue in the Peters’ case.
The lawsuit claims that, as an estimation, the healthy nine year old boy would have lived another 68 years if not for this accident. The family asks a jury to decide what they should receive for their terrible loss and also asks for $9,000 in funeral costs.
Atlanta Wrongful Death Lawyers
If a loved one has died unnecessarily as a result of the negligence of another, the experienced personal injury attorneys at Sammons & Carpenter can help you understand your case and what can be done to get you the compensation you need and deserve. To learn more, contact the Law Office of Sammons & Carpenter today at 404-814-8948, or fill out our confidential online case evaluation form for a free consultation.
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