Premises Liability Accidents
Traditionally, a landowner owes the highest duty to invitees, who are on the property for a business purpose, such as shopping at a retail store. An intermediate level of care is required for licensees, who have permission to be on the property as social guests. The lowest level of care is owed to trespassers, who have no legal right to be on the property.
Premises liability claims can result from a wide range of accidents, including:
- Falls resulting from standing water, ice or other hazards
- Trips caused by holes in pavement or floors, uneven surfaces or loose carpeting
- Inadequate security
- Falling merchandise
Regardless of the cause of an accident, it is important that the injured person contact an attorney who has the knowledge and experience to fully investigate the accident and document the resulting injuries and damages.
Some of the issues that may need to be explored in a premises liability case include:
- The length of time that the defect that caused the injury had been in place
- Whether the landowner was actually aware of the dangerous condition or in the exercise of due diligence should have known of the condition
- What efforts (if any) had been made to correct the hazard
- Whether other people had been affected by the condition prior to the accident
In wrongful death cases that result from a tragic loss of life, the victim’s family may seek payment for funeral and burial expenses, loss of consortium, lost net earnings to the estate and other damages. It is important to note that, in order to recover damages, the case must be filed within the statute of limitations period. Failing to file a claim within that time usually results in the dismissal of an otherwise valid case.