baseball struck my windshield

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baseball struck my windshield

Last Friday evening, I went to a baseball park to walk my dog my routine. The baseball park consists of several baseball fields and a walking trail. I parked my car in front of a baseball field Let’s call it field A that was locked for the day. While I was walking my dog, I noticed three high school aged boy climbed over the fence of field A into the field. As I was getting ready to leave, one of the boys hit a ball that went over the fence by at least 100 feet and struck my windshield. I was standing very close to the windshield when the ball hit. My question is who’s fault it is here that my windshield got broken by being struck by a baseball?

Asked on March 2, 2017 under Accident Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You can try to sue the boys' families, since the boys and their families *may* be liable; the part definitely is not liable (they did nothing wrong). But be warned: there is a good chance you will NOT win: even if the field was then locked, there is a reasonable chance that someone would access it in one way or another and play baseball--that's what the field is for, after all. But:
1) Generally, if you park near a ball field (or golf range, etc.), you are held to have "assumed the risk," or taken the chance, of a ball hitting your car. Assuming a known or obvious risk generally bars you from recovering compensation--basically, you took your chances, and can't complain if things did not pan out.
2) Even without assumption of the risk, you'd have to show that the boys were at fault in some way--either intentionally hit the ball at your car, or did something unreasonably careless ("negligent") in how they were playing or hitting the ball. Liability, or an obligation to pay, depends on fault--if they were doing nothing unreasonable or wrong but were using the field the way it was intended, they would not be liable.


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