What is a homeowner’s responsibility if I slip on snow or ice?

There’s not necessarily a black-and-white answer on this. With most of these kinds of cases, the standard is one of due care. If a property owner can show that he or she exercised due care, considering all the factors, then they’re not considered to be negligent, and if they’re not negligent, they’re not going to be held liable. If they know that there’s an unsafe condition, for example, let’s say there’s a slope in the driveway which already makes it more likely that a person will slip and fall on ice, then they may have a duty of due care to remove snow or remove ice on a reasonable basis. How long has it been since it snowed? How long has the ice been there for? When did it form? What opportunity did they have to take corrective action?

Those are the factors, and every case is going to be decided on its own merits as to whether the landowner was negligent. The person who slipped and fell is going to be questioned about whether he or she was aware that it was icy or possibility of ice or snow on the walkway. There’s going to be an allegation, in most cases, that the person who fell was, at least to some extent, comparatively negligent, which will cut into both the value of their bargaining position or settlement position, or the value of their case.

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