Liability law is extremely complicated and counterintuitive.
However, one common factor is that it appears to generally be beneficial—or legally required—for the owner of a potential hazard to warn others about that hazard (e.g. the omnipresent California Prop 65 warnings: “Warning: This location contains chemicals that are known to cause cancer”).
Unfortunately, these Prop 65 warning signs have two issues:
- They only cover a limited subset of dangerous situations
- The warnings are inapplicable to normal residential hazards (e.g. fire, electrocution hazard).
We can bring the potential liability reduction of the Prop 65 warning to all homeowners (not just business owners) with a new type of wallpaper that lists every conceivable hazard on it (Figure 1).
Consider the following situation:
- A houseguest is bitten by 99 snakes (that were disguising themselves as a carpet)
- Then the houseguest sues the owner of the house for the cost of their medical expenses.
Now, at the civil trial, the homeowner can point to a photo of their wallpaper and say “Your Honor, it says right here that there is a ‘snake possibility,’ so my guest should have been well aware of this potential danger.” See Figure 2 for an example of what this photo might show.
Whether or not that would hold any legal weight is a question for the great legal minds of our time, of course.
How to create the list of warnings:
You might think it would be difficult to create a comprehensive list of warnings, but this is actually the easiest part: we simply collect all civil lawsuits and list out every single thing that a lawsuit ever happened over, and then add that to the wallpaper. At 12-point font, it would be possible to easily fit millions of unique warnings on a standard wall.
PROS: May (in a theoretical world in which lawsuits are resolved by robots) help reduce legal liability AND bring high-class interior decoration to a room.
CONS: It is unclear if this legal strategy would be successful, as it is has presumably not yet been tested in court.