If atenant’s dogs got of the backyard after a gardner did the lawns and itcost $300 to getthem released from SPCA, who’s liable?

UPDATED: Jul 26, 2011

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If atenant’s dogs got of the backyard after a gardner did the lawns and itcost $300 to getthem released from SPCA, who’s liable?

The tenant claims his 2 dogs got loose from the backyard after the gardener did the lawns. He had to pay to get the dogs back from the SPCA. The gardener claims he locked the gate when he left and is not liable, although he does admit that he mowed the lawn a day earlier than he normally does; he also a used a helper, which he normally does not. The gardener does not have liability insurance.

Asked on July 26, 2011 California


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The problem that you have is proving that the gardener or his/her assistant was careless in not locking the gates to the enclosed area properly so that the tenant's dogs got out resulting in them being caught by the SPCA where the fine for their releaseis $300.00.

If you or the tenant can prove that the gardener or his/her assistant did not properly lock the gates and the dogs got out, the gardener would be responsible for the results of his or her conduct that caused the damages, namely the $300.00 fine.

You as the landlord could be liable if you hired the gardener as your agent, the gardener was negligent and and the gardener cannot pay the $300.00 amount.

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