Premises Liability Claims That Arise During the Holidays

Premises Liability Claims That Arise During the Holidays

The holiday season is a time for joy, celebration, and togetherness. However, amidst all the fun, the risk of accidents and injuries can significantly increase, potentially leading to premises liability claims.  

A premises liability claim is a type of personal injury case that arises when an individual gets injured on someone else's property due to the property owner's negligence. This could occur in various settings, such as a retail store, a private home, or a public park. The injury might result from unsafe conditions like slippery floors, defective staircases, poor lighting, or falling objects, among others.  

In a premises liability claim, the injured party asserts that the property owner failed to maintain safe conditions, did not adequately warn of potential hazards, or was otherwise negligent, leading to the injury. This article outlines common types of premises liability claims that arise during major holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa, along with tips to avoid them. 


Many different accidents can occur while trick-or-treating or going to holiday parties. Common premises liability incidents that can occur include: 

  1. Trick-or-treat injuries. It's a longstanding tradition, but it can result in injuries on someone else's property due to uneven sidewalks, poor lighting, or hidden obstacles. To prevent this, ensure your walkways are clear and well-lit. 

  1. Decoration dangers. Decorations can pose a hazard if they are not securely fastened or if they obstruct walkways. Make sure your decorations are safe and secure. 

  1. Haunted house injuries. When it comes to attractions like haunted houses, the attraction's owners can be liable for injury in most cases. Be mindful of what waivers you sign when purchasing tickets. 


Thanksgiving is a special time when loved ones gather together, often over a bountiful feast, to express their thankfulness for each other and the blessings in their lives. During Thanksgiving, you may be at risk for injury because of:  

  1. Food poisoning. Improperly stored or prepared foods can lead to food poisoning. While hosts of Thanksgiving dinner should always follow proper food handling and storage procedures, sometimes stores can be liable for causing food poisoning accidents.  

  1. Slip and fall accidents. Wet floors, especially in the kitchen or bathroom, can cause slip-and-fall accidents. Keep these areas dry and clean. 


Hanukkah is famously associated with the miracle of the oil, where a single day's supply of consecrated oil miraculously lasted for eight days in the temple's menorah. During annual celebrations, people celebrate with the lighting of the menorah, special prayers, games, and traditional foods.  

Common premises liability issues that can arise during this holiday include:  

  • Candle-lighting-related burn injuries. If an individual suffers burn injuries on someone else's property, they may be able to file a premises liability lawsuit. It will need to be proven that a homeowner was negligent in some way. In the context of burn injuries caused by candles, a premises liability claim could arise if, for instance, a property owner negligently left lit candles in an area with a high risk of causing a fire, such as near flammable materials. Another example might be failing to monitor or extinguish candles in a crowded event, leading to an individual suffering burns. 

  • Cooking-related burns. Cooking-related activities, such as preparing food, using kitchen appliances, or handling hot liquids, could potentially lead to burn injuries that may result in a premises liability claim. For example, a guest could be burned by a defective stove or an improperly maintained deep fryer. To pursue a premises liability claim for cooking-related burn injuries, the injured party must prove that the property owner was negligent and breached their duty of care. This means the owner knew or should have known about the unsafe condition (like a faulty stove) but failed to rectify it, leading to the injury. 


During the Christmas holiday weekend, a variety of premises liability accidents can occur due to the festive activities and decorations. Such incidents include:  

  1. Christmas tree fires. Christmas trees can catch fire if they come into contact with open flames or faulty lights, and guests can suffer injuries. Regularly water your tree and check your lights for any defects. 

  1. Snow and ice accidents. Slip and fall accidents due to snow and ice are common. Property owners should keep their walkways clear and salted and have signs that caution you to watch your step in certain areas.  

  1. Holiday decoration-related injuries. Holiday decorations, while festive and joyful, can sometimes lead to premises liability accidents during the Christmas season. For instance, outdoor decorations like lights and ornaments can become potential trip hazards if not properly secured or placed correctly. Icy pathways or stairs, often overlooked in the excitement of decorating, can result in slip and fall injuries. Inside the house, Christmas trees can pose a risk if they are not sturdily mounted, potentially toppling over and causing injury. Furthermore, Christmas lights, if faulty or left on for extended periods, can cause electrical fires. 

  1. Commercial property incidents. During the holiday season, many people are out shopping, picking out trees, and doing fun activities; during these activities, people can suffer injuries because of negligent conditions on the property.  


Kwanzaa is a week-long celebration that is a time of joy, reflection, and unity. Kwanzaa involves the use of candles in the Kinara, which can be a fire hazard if not monitored properly. Property owners should never leave lit candles unattended and should keep a safe distance between candles and flammable items. 

Cluttered areas pose another risk. With the exchange of gifts and communal feasts, spaces can quickly become filled with objects that may cause trips and falls. Maintaining clear, clutter-free areas is essential, as is securing any decorations or lighting that could potentially fall and cause injury. 

Reliable Personal Injury Lawyers 

At Balbo & Gregg, Attorneys at Law, PC, we understand the financial strain that an injury can place on an individual and strive to alleviate this burden. Our attorneys work tirelessly to advocate for their clients, aiming to secure the best possible settlement award to which they may be entitled. Should you or a loved one be injured on someone else’s property, our team can help you pursue a claim.  

Call (866) 580-3089 to request a case consultation.