Cable company liability due to injury from their box?

by Steve
(Colorado, USA)

We have a cable box in our back yard, approximately 2 ft tall by 6 inches square. It is approximately 4 feet out from the fence, and 10-15 ft on either side from the edge of the yard. It is within the main activity area of the yard. The box is maintained by the cable company in the event their is an issue with the cable transmission.

We have 2 kids (5 and 2 years old) that are very active in the back yard. Our 5 year old has run into the box and been injured, although not seriously this time.

We would like the cable box moved but the cable company wants to charge approximately $1,000 to do so. What is the cable company's liability, if any, for injuries sustained to a person from running into their box? Is there anything else we can legally do to get the box removed, without paying $1,000? Thank you!

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Cable company liability due to injury from their box?":

Steve (Colorado, USA):

To have installed a cable box in your yard, the cable company must have had an "easement" to your property. An easement doesn't mean they own the property upon which the cable box is situated. Rather, it means the cable company has a right to use part of your property to install the cable box along with cable lines.

Unfortunately, because the cable company has an easement, they have the right to charge to move the cable box. The easement also allows them to simply refuse to relocate the cable box. Instead, they are charging you to do so. That is entirely legal.

If your children are injured by running into the cable box, the cable company will likely not be liable. The existence of the cable box is inherently safe. If though, the cable box were to deteriorate, or in some manner become inherently unsafe, and as a result of that defect your children were injured, the cable company would likely be liable.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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