Why Do You Need Professional Snow Removal Services?
In a court of law, property owners are judged based on their duty of care to provide a safe environment for visitors, residents, or customers on their property. This duty of care is determined by factors such as the type of property, amount of traffic, and what is reasonable to keep the property safe. Even if you or your staff perform snow removal adequately and on time, without a proper contractor, you may still be held liable for any accidents or injuries that occur on your property due to snow or ice-related mishaps.
Liability Protection with a Written Contract
A snow removal agreement that is just an invoice or bill of sale will not protect you in case of a dispute with your contractor or in the event of personal injury or property damage. It is crucial to have a properly insured contractor with a written paper contract to transfer the liability of snow removal work. As a property owner or occupier, you are completely liable for any injuries or losses that occur on any portion of your property, including parking lots, walkways, sidewalks, steps, doorways, and patios.
The Importance of a Professional Contractor
The Canadian court system takes personal safety on private property seriously, and property owners who fail to maintain adequate duty of care can face stiff judgments. For example, consider a live-in landlord who handles their building's maintenance and fails to remove snow and ice from their property. If a slip and fall accident occurs due to negligence in snow removal, the landlord may be deemed negligent and face potential lawsuits. In today's litigious environment where slip and fall lawsuits are on the rise, it is crucial to hire a professional snow removal service to protect yourself from liability.
Choosing the Right Contractor
When hiring a snow removal contractor, it is not just a matter of hiring the first or least expensive one you encounter. It is important to read and understand their contract thoroughly and ensure that it provides adequate coverage for your property. A vague or simplistic agreement may not prove due diligence in maintaining your property. Make sure to fully understand the scope of work to be performed and whether it is reasonable for your type of property. Consider the contractor's professionalism, resources, service times, and what constitutes a snow or ice event, which should be clearly laid out in the contract.
Insights from Type of Properties Serviced
When evaluating a snow removal contractor, asking for references may not always provide a true picture of the contractor's service quality, as some references may be biased. Instead, look for the type of properties that the contractor services. High-priority, high-traffic locations such as health care centers, hospitals, major retailers, and large educational institutions are good indicators of a reliable contractor. Reliable contractors are unlikely to refuse to provide references for their services.
Ensuring Contractor Compliance
To protect yourself as the property occupier, ensure that your snow removal contractor maintains an insured and legal labor force and does not hire any "under the table" workers. If an "under the table" worker gets injured on your property, you may be held liable for their injuries or damages. Your contractor should only use properly hired, trained, and WSIB certified labor, and WSIB clearance certificates should be available upon request.
Avoid All Those Slip and Fall Accidents
Professional snow removal services in Toronto are essential to protect your property from liability in case of slip and fall accidents. Hiring a properly insured contractor with a written contract is crucial to transfer the liability of snow removal work. It is important to choose a professional contractor who understands the scope of work, provides adequate