Protecting Landowners… Limiting Liability

Under current law, a landowner can be held liable for injuries suffered by a trespassing minor if the land contains an attractive nuisance. HB 1086, by Rep. Kathleen Curry and Senator Mary Hodge, is designed to help protect landowner from being held liable for injuries to members of the public who trespass onto their private land for recreational purposes, unless the landowner willfully or deliberately caused the said injuries. This bill is focused on all waterways and ditches, including facilities used for diversion, storage, conveyance, or use of water, claiming that property is not an ‘attractive nuisance’ and therefore the landowner can not be held at fault.

Colorado Farm Bureau Policy #228 titled “Landowner Liability” states that we favor legislation relieving the property owner of any responsibility for accident or injury to those parties on his premises without permission.

People of any age who trespass onto private land, must recognize that they are putting themselves at risk. This is not about public recreation; this is about people breaking the law and entering someone else’s land without their permission. We are well aware of the recreational opportunities that exist on many stretches of private land. However, we want to make clear that this land has many purposes and it is where we run our operations and businesses. It is not the landowner’s responsibility to watch out for someone else’s children.

This bill is up in the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, January 28th. CFB Member, Brenda Seifken, will be testifying on behalf of Farm Bureau in support of this bill.

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