Attractive nuisance

Definition
1  : a thing or condition on one's property that poses a risk to children who may be attracted to it without realizing the risk by virtue of their youth
2  : a doctrine or theory employed in most jurisdictions: a possessor of property may be liable for injury caused to a trespassing or invited child by a condition on the property if he or she failed to use ordinary care in preventing such injury (as by fencing in a pool) and had reason to foresee entry by the child and if the utility of the condition was minor compared to the likelihood of injury <declined to extend the doctrine of attractive nuisance...to moving trains ­Honeycutt v. City of Wichita, 796 P.2d 549 (1990)>
The doctrine of attractive nuisance originated in an 1873 U.S. Supreme Court case Sioux City & Pacific Railroad Co. v. Stout, 84 U.S. 657 (1873), involving a trespassing child injured by a railroad turntable; an early premise was that the attractive nuisance caused the trespass, and so by extension the owner was responsible for the trespass as well. Subsequent modification of the doctrine has focused on the possessor's duty to use care in preventing injury, whether a child is a trespasser or invitee.



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Based on Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©2001.
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