Snow and ice covered sidewalks are safety hazards. The question is, “Whose job is it to shovel them?” That depends on whether you own or rent.
If you own
Yep, it’s you. A homeowner can be held responsible if someone is injured on the sidewalk that is on his/her property.
Chances are the condo association is responsible for snow removal. Ask your board to be sure.
If you rent
Usually the renter is responsible. Check your lease to see if it says if you or the landlord is responsible.
Usually the apartment management is responsible but, again, check your lease to be sure.
If you rent in a retirement community: The community management is usually responsible for snow removal but check your lease.
Some places have laws setting time frames by which snow must be cleared. For example, Pittsburgh residents are expected to remove snow within 24 hours but in some places you are responsible for shoveling sidewalks within three hours after a snowfall ends!
Most homeowner’s insurance provides some coverage if someone who does not live in your home is injured on your property. Unfortunately, there are times when the claim amount exceeds basic coverage limits. This could leave you personally responsible for any damages over the amount your insurance covers.
An Umbrella policy provides an extra layer of coverage over and above your auto and homeowners policies. Check with your agent to see if you have a need for an umbrella policy.
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