Premises Liability Law: What Clients and Attorneys Need to Know
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury as a result of an accident caused by negligent or dangerous conditions on someone else’s property, you naturally would want to know more about your options. Can you receive compensation for your medical bills? What other types of damages can you recover? Who should be held responsible for your accident?
These are all smart questions to ask. However, premises liability can be a complex field to navigate. Your best bet is to seek out the advice of an experienced premises liability lawyer.
Status of the Injured Party
Premises liability accidents can occur anywhere—whether it’s a friend’s home or a park, apartment complex, restaurant or bar, office building, or the grocery store. Regardless of where the accident occurred, your premises liability lawyer will want to know what your status was at the time of the incident.
Invitees are people invited to enter the property when it was held open to the public. Business invitees could refer to anyone entering the property as a result of express or implied permission to conduct business activities. Customers of a store would be considered public invitees.
Property owners have the highest duty of care for the safety and wellbeing of invitees.
Licensees are individuals who had the express or implied permission of the owner to enter the property. If a friend invited you over to their house for a party, the invitation would serve as express permission to enter their home. Implied permission covers conduct that reasonably justifies the licensee’s assumption that the owner would allow them on the property if they desired.
Anyone who enters the property of another without their permission and for their own purposes is considered a trespasser. Contrary to what many property owners believe, owners owe a duty of care to discovered trespassers to make safe conditions or adequately warn the trespasser of unsafe conditions. Owners must also refrain from wanton or willful misconduct when it comes to undiscovered trespassers.
Conditions That Can Lead to Premises Liability Accidents
One of the most common types of premises liability accidents is a slip and fall. They can be difficult to litigate and require a skilled lawyer who can thoroughly investigate the conditions that caused your accident.
The premises liability lawyers at Langdon & Emison have extensive experience in investigating the causes behind slip and fall accidents. Some common conditions that can lead to slip and falls and other accidents include:
- Wet or slippery floors
- Uneven flooring
- Cracks in the sidewalk
- Poor or inadequate lighting
- Torn carpet
- Defective furniture
- Negligent care of a public area (e.g. potholes)
- Building code violations
- Dog bites
- Unsafe staircases
Your premises liability lawyer will need to know everything you can remember from the accident and the events leading up to it. They can conduct an investigation, review any available photo or video evidence, speak to eyewitnesses, and review your medical records from the injuries you sustained.
Slip and Fall Accident Injuries
A slip and fall accident may seem minor. However, they can lead to serious injuries that require extensive treatment and may lead to long-lasting effects. Many slip and fall accident victims suffer from:
- Broken bones
- Head trauma
- Deep cuts
- Sprained or broken ankles
- Back injuries
In fact, according to the National Floor Safety Institute, falls account for over eight million hospital emergency room visits every year. The NFSI also found that falls are the second-leading cause of injury-related death for people aged 65-84.
We urge victims of slip and falls or other premises liability accidents to seek immediate medical treatment. Otherwise, you could suffer long-term damage and face an even tougher road to recovery.
On top of seeking compensation for medical bills and other recovery expenses, premises liability victims have the right to seek damages for other costs. Lost wages, reduced earning capacity, financial hardship, loss of enjoyment of life, and pain and suffering are all different damages that can be recovered with the help of a premises liability lawyer.
How do premises liability and insurance work?
The defendant’s ability to pay out for the victim’s damages in a premises liability accident relies on their financial ability or assets. In most premises liability cases, the primary source of recovery will not be the defendant themself, but their insurance company.
Your lawyer will need to find out the answers to the following questions when evaluating your case:
- Is the property covered by insurance, typically either a homeowner or commercial liability insurance policy?
- What are the insurance policy limits?
- Are there different policy limits for different types of damages?
- What exclusions apply to the claim?
Work with the Experienced Premises Liability Lawyers at Langdon & Emison
For over 30 years, Langdon & Emison has sought justice on behalf of premises liability victims. Our experienced premises liability lawyers have taken on negligent apartment complexes, hotels, and other property owners and recovered millions of dollars for our clients.
Call our firm today at 800.397.4910 to schedule a risk-free, zero-obligation case evaluation. We can review the facts of your case, outline your legal options, and advise you on the best next steps to take for your premises liability claim. We look forward to hearing from you.