October 5, 2021
The Best Legal Opinions Are Not Always Found On Social Media

I was alerted by a client Sunday morning in reference to a social media post active on something called NextDoor®. The NextDoor® app is set up for neighbor to neighbor communication and has been very helpful with slowing the Catalytic Convertor thieves and others who are active when the rest of us are sleeping.

The post involved a homeowner who extended the width of his driveway as a “do it yourself” project and potentially created a tripping hazard with a pre-existing SMUD box. I have’nt independantly verified any aspect of the post. I am simply offering comments. I’ve attached what I am told is a picture of the driveway extension and SMUD box in question. This picture does not show the edge of the driveway prior to the extension. What this picture shows is uneven levels of concrete and reveals the installation may not have been done to grade.

The overwhelming opinion on the conversation feed was this defect is SMUD’s problem and a call to them should clear everything up. If the facts I read were correct the fault may lie with the homeowner creating an unsafe condition. SMUD initially placed the box in the lawn area and it likely designed the positioning and grading with that use in mind. By adding concrete and making this area part of the driveway, the box is now being driven over by heavy cars or trucks. This added weight was not likely anticipated by SMUD when it was installed and is likely what is causing it to sink. A call to SMUD may prompt SMUD to take some action, but it does not relieve this home owner from potential liability in the event someone like a delivery driver or neighbor trips on it and is injured.

If the home owner knows of a dangerous condition on his property and fails to take steps to fix it, or place a warning sign or cone over it until it can be fixed, the home owner may end up being a defendant in a lawsuit. I would suggest the homeowner make an immediate call to SMUD and ask for an on-site visit by a SMUD construction specialist to determine the next course of action. In the meantime some action should be taken to warn or guard against someone tripping on the uneven driveway. Simply assuming its SMUDs issue is a risky position to take.

We represent people who are injured because of the careless and reckless acts of others. At the end of the day your case can only be settled one time and you need to know all of the facts beforehand. The reason that insurance companies have paid our clients in excess of $130,000,000.00 is that we get the facts and are not intimidated at the prospect of going to trial when insurance companies fail to offer full compensation. We help with serious injuries that require serious representation. We are the Law Offices of Guenard & Bozarth, LLP. Our attorneys have more than 60 years of experience specializing in only representing injured people.. Call GB Legal 24/7/365 at 888-809-1075 or visit www.gblegal.com We would be honored to represent you!






Guenard & Bozarth llp obtained a $2,962,903 jury verdict in the Sacramento County Superior Court for plaintiff David Schoonover, who suffered head and neck injuries and fractures in a head-on accident on Roseville Road in Roseville on July 22, 2012




Guenard & Bozarth LLP recently settled a case for $300,000 involving a hair weave that went terribly wrong. Our client was a young lady, and aspiring model, who experienced pressure necrosis from a tight weave and it changed her life.




Guenard & Bozarth LLP recently settled a slip and fall case for $500,000 a couple weeks before trial. The client slipped and fell on a wet piece of cardboard in a grocery store and sustained a serious shoulder injury that required surgery.




On February 13, 2013 Maricela, a Certified Nursing Assistant presented to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Emergency Room with complaint of neck and back pain. She was diagnosed with a neck strain and was given Ibuprofen and instructed to return if her symptoms did not subside.


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