My handicapped child was on a pool lift in a hotel. It broke with him on it causing him to crash down hard into water. Is the hotel liable

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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My handicapped child was on a pool lift in a hotel. It broke with him on it causing him to crash down hard into water. Is the hotel liable

We are staying at a hotel in
GA. I picked this hotel because
it had a handicap accessible
room, and pool lift for my son.
The lift broke with him on it
causing him to crash down hard
into the water. He was so
scared he didn’t want to stay
there anymore. We are now at a
different hotel. I took
pictures and it was witnessed
by 4 people.

Asked on May 20, 2018 under Personal Injury, Massachusetts


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The first question is--liable for what? You do not write that he was injured. You do not indicate that you incurred medical expenses. Except in the case of intentional wrongful behavior (e.g. trying to hurt someone on purpose), a person or business is only liable for physical injury and economic costs or losses. If, as you appear to indicate and we hope, you son was scared but otherwise unharmed, there is no recovery (compensation) to which you would be entitled.
Second, a person, business, property owner, etc. is only liable for accidents on their property when they are at fault, such as by being unreasonably careless. They are not liable just because an accident occured on their premises. So even if there had been physical injuries or medical costs, to recover compensation, you'd have to show that the hotel was negligent or careless in how it maintained the lift. That's not always the case: sometimes people maintain objects or devices and they fail without fault anyway. If you could not show that the hotel had been negligent, you would not be able to hold them liable.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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