Are Colleges Liable for Murdered Students?

Personal Injury Lawyer

The question of college and liability is one that is complicated. When it comes to university students, for the most part, the college does not have an obligation to protect adult students from criminal acts. In the 1960s, college students fought for the right to control their own lives and since then, the college itself has less of an obligation to protect the student against acts of violence.

All or Nothing

Now, in the case of a student’s murder, many schools might take an all or nothing stance. This isn’t necessarily how the law works. Instead, the college has enough of supervision and control over the students to have a legal obligation to protect them. Most cases that prove to be exceptions to the no-duty rule is on the field during sports. Due to this, however, it’s reasonable to think that the school has an obligation to students during core college activities.

If a school presents itself as being a safe environment, then the students attending the school will expect safety. It’s in the school’s duty to keep their students safe. When it comes to the legality, however, often, these kinds of cases have to go to trial.

Protective Measures

In some instances, a school cannot predict a student’s violence. If a student is killed on campus by another student or by an outsider, this doesn’t necessarily mean that the school is liable. The situation needs to show a reasonable failure of protection on the school’s behalf. For instance, lax security in dorm rooms or the administration ignoring threats to one of their students may leave the school liable. When it comes to colleges and liability, nothing is black and white. Colleges are not excused from liability, but just because someone is hurt on campus or off campus does not mean that they are liable for the death. In fact, if an injury or death occurs off campus, there may be no case at all. The college needs to have a reasonable duty to protect the student.

When it comes to college liability, it’s a complicated subject. Most claims against colleges for student death go to trial. If you’re considering filing a suit against a school, then you’ll want to contact an attorney. He or she will help you figure out if the case is worth pursuing and if you can expect to win. With all of the complex law involved, it helps to have a wrongful death lawyer on your side. For more information, contact a lawyer today.

Resource: Personal Injury Lawyer Charlottesville, VA, MartinWren, P.C.

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