What to do if my neighbor has requested access to my garage in order to perform renovation work?

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What to do if my neighbor has requested access to my garage in order to perform renovation work?

My neighbor requests access to my property’s garage to do renovation work such as painting, and coating of his building. The work is expected to be completed in about 3 days. Should I ask for a written document with disclosure that I am not liable of any workers’ injury at the site on top of a certificate of insurance? Also, should I be compensated for allowing their access?

Asked on November 14, 2018 under Real Estate Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

There is considerable downside or risk for you: if someone is injured in the garage; if your garage is damaged. Yes, there are ways to mitigate the risk with waiver forms and/or insurance, but not to eliminate it--there is always the chance that damage will be done that insurance will not cover, for example, leaving you in the position of having to sue for compensation. The best idea is to refuse the access. If you don't want to or feel you can't do that (such as based on the relationship between you and the neighbor), then--
1) The neighbor needs to sign a form stating the will indemnify you and hold you harmless from any claims or lawsuits against you arising out of the work being done in your garage; and that he will reimburse you for any/all damage to your property or costs you incur from this, including any clean-up costs.
2) The contractors have to provide proof of worker's compensation and liability insurance (to help protect you).
3) Everyone access your garage--each individual person--must sign a release agreeing to not sue.


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