Are you liable for injuries if someone falls on your sidewalk?

Are you liable for injuries if someone falls on your sidewalk? (WKEF/WRGT)

MIAMI VALLEY, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) -- It's not just roads seeing the threat for re-freeze overnight into Tuesday, your sidewalks could pose a safety threat on the way to work of the bus stop tomorrow.

FOX 45 found out you're only liable for injuries and what happens on your icy sidewalks on one condition.

Chelsea Waggamon works downtown and fell walking across her parking lot.

"It's very slippery and I can tell you walking over here I about fell," Waggamon said, "Not only people trying to get back to your cars after work, or going to work from parking their cars, it's a fall hazard!".

Waggamon found out the hard way it's no one's fault but her own.

Whether it's a home, business or municipality, property owners aren't liable for your fall on snow and ice.

Attorney Jason Saldanha with Dyer, Garofolo, Mann, and Schultz, said "generally under Ohio law, a property owner, a homeowner, they're not responsible for someone who falls on a natural accumulation of ice or snow."

But, Saldanha said you might be liable for a lawsuit if you clear your snow and ice in a way that makes it dangerous.

"If you make your property dangerous from shoveling or doing anything else, if you pile up the snow really high and then it melts down, yes there can be liability there," Saldanha said.

But he also said for it to hold up in court is on a highly case by case basis.

"Generally though you do have a duty to keep your house or your property safe from any type of danger," said Saldanha.

After her fall, Waggamon thinks, "I really think it should change especially with city sidewalks like this. I think it should be up to the city to take care of it and to make sure that people are safe."

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