Issue: WHETHER UNDER ILLINOIS LAW A PARK DISTRICT OWED A DUTY OF CARE TO AN INDIVIDUAL BASED ON ITS PRIOR KNOWLEDGE OF A PHYSICAL CONDITION AND ITS EXPRESS AND VOLUNTARY ASSUMPTION OF RESPONSIBILITIES.
|Area of Law:||Government Claims, Litigation & Procedure, Personal Injury & Negligence|
|Keywords:||Duty of care; Liability for a voluntary undertaking|
|Cited Cases:||224 N.E.2d 231; 216 Ill. Dec. 568; 674 N.E.2d 927; 562 N.E.2d 967; 665 N.E.2d 826; 605 N.E.2d 557|
In Bucheleres v. Chicago Park Dist., 171 Ill. 2d 435, 665 N.E.2d 826, 216 Ill. Dec. 568 (1996), which involved the issue of whether the city park district had a duty to post warning signs to prevent divers and swimmers from diving headfirst into the open and obvious natural hazard of Lake Michigan. As the Illinois Supreme Court stated, “Duty is determined by asking ‘whether defendant and plaintiff stood in such a relationship to one another that the law imposted upon defendant an obligation of reasonable conduct for the benefit of plaintiff.'” Id., 171 Ill. 2d at 445, 665 N.E.2d at 831 (citation omitted).
Lance v. Senior, 36 Ill. 2d 516, 224 N.E.2d 231 (1967), involved a hemophiliac child who swallowed a needle and was injured while a guest in the defendants’ home. The court stated that the “burden sought to be imposed upon the defendants is a heavy one, which would require intimate and constant surveillance.” Id., 36 Ill. 2d 516, 224 N.E.2d at 233. It also cites Widlowski v. Durkee Foods, 138 Ill. 2d 369, 562 N.E.2d 967 (1990), for its ruling that there is no duty “to guard against the ‘tragically bizarre.'” Id., 562 N.E.2d at 970.
In Widlowski, an employee who was deprived of oxygen became delirious and bit off part of a nurse’s finger. The Supreme Court held that public policy mitigated against imposing a duty to […]