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Personal liability exposure exists in many different - and often unexpected - forms. While everyone may have some liability exposure, high net worth individuals are especially vulnerable; wealth can make them natural targets for lawsuits.

Following are some examples of actual industry claims that highlight personal liability exposures. Unfortunate incidents like these can, and do, occur.

Premises Liability

  • A delivery man carrying packages tripped and fell over a dog resting on the steps.
  • An interior decorator fell through rotted board on a guest house porch and fractured her ankle.
  • While performing maintenance work, a domestic employee fell from a roof and sustained fatal injuries.
  • The employee of a landscaping contractor sustained severe injuries on the premises due to unsafe work conditions and equipment failure.
  • Excessive weight and improper design caused a deck to collapse during a party, injuring numerous guests.
  • A New Year's Eve party guest was severely injured while dancing.
  • The host of a private house party was sued for negligence after a party guest sexually assaulted another attendee.
  • A farm animal escaped from the property, wandered into a roadway and caused a fatal car accident.
  • An insured's elderly mother-in-law fell in a dimly lit entry foyer and fractured her hip.

Damage to Another's Property

  • A large tree branch fell onto a neighbor's greenhouse and caused extensive damage.
  • The drainage system from an insured's swimming pool caused flooding and water damage to a neighbor's property.

Personal Liability

  • Dog bites: a dog escaped from a closed bedroom and bit a party guest; a dog bit a contractor working on the insured's property; and while being walked, a dog bit a passing skateboarder.
  • Hobbies: An errant golf ball struck a pedestrian, causing severe injuries.
  • Children's activities: The playmate of an insured's daughter allegedly struck a domestic employee who was babysitting the children (personal negligence arising from the actions of a minor).

Defamation, Libel and Slander

  • An insured was accused of making slanderous remarks in a speech during a political campaign.
  • An insured was sued for defamation as a result of forwarding an e-mail containing disparaging comments about the someone.

Malicious Prosecution

  • After taking legal action to stop a neighbor from building an addition to his home, an insured was subsequently sued by the neighbor.

Wrongful Termination/Discrimination

  • A former domestic employee sued over allegations of discrimination and wrongful termination.

Wrongful Eviction

  • An insured ended a relationship with a domestic partner and forced the partner to move out of the home. The partner sued with an allegation of wrongful eviction.

Please contact your Private Client representative for more information on solutions to high net worth clients' personal liability needs.

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