I was injured when a diving board broke while I was on it, who can be sued?

There are several potential parties you could sue:

(1) The property owner, if poor maintenance of the diving board was the reason it broke. In order to recover damages against the owner, you’d have to show that the board was not safe for usage and the risk of injury was great. To prove this you would want to establish that the pool owner either knew the diving board was unsafe, or should have known the diving board was unsafe.

The issue of whether he should have known that the diving board was unsafe is a determination made based on whether the average person in the same circumstances would have known the diving board was dangerous. That could be straightforward if the diving board was in obvious disrepair, or if there was a history of other people getting injured, or if there were reports of some sort (e.g, insurance, police) that showed that the diving board was dangerous. If there was nothing obvious, you may be able to show that the homeowner was negligent because of his inattention to the safety of the diving board. For example, let’s say that the homeowner’s insurance carrier provides a significant amount of information to the homeowner that gives him directions on how to determine whether the diving board continues to be safe. The argument would be, then, that anyone with that information would have been on notice of the necessity to check the diving board and if they had would have realized that the diving board was unsafe.

(2) The company that installed the diving board, if negligent installation was the reason it broke. To prove negligent installation, your lawyer will find a diving board installer who will analyze whether the diving board was installed correctly. If not, the opinion of the diving board installer will be used as evidence of the other diving board installer’s negligence.

(3) The manufacturer or seller of the diving board if there was a defect in the board that caused it to break. It may be that the diving board has manufacturing defects, design defects, that the warnings or labeling on the diving board were inadequate, or that the marketing was misleading. For example, if the diving board design did not allow for a 180 pound person to bear down on it without breaking, or if the material used to make the board couldn’t withstand 180 pounds of pressure, or, if the board was designed for use only by people who weigh under 100 pounds, but there was no warning label, or, the packaging may show an adult jumping on that diving board, you may have a product liability claim against the diving board manufacturer.

(4) The store that sold you the diving board if they represented to you that is was safe for you to use it, when it was not.

The success or failure of your case will probably hinge on the testimony of experts. Product liability lawsuits and/or negligence lawsuits are complex and therefore hiring an personal injury lawyer makes sense.

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