Premises Liability Lawsuits
When the negligence of a property owner contributes to an accident or injury, the case may qualify for compensation under premises liability law. Costs associated with pain, disfigurement, emotional distress, medical bills, lost wages or permanent physical disability could be recovered if it is possible to prove that the owner of a property was negligent in maintaining the property or otherwise failing to protect visitors or tenants from injury.
Common Premise Liability Lawsuits
Thousands of people are injured each year as a result of on-premises hazards, some very seriously. Injuries often result from the following situations:
- Slippery or icy parking lots and/or walkways
- Spills at restaurants or grocery stores
- Falling objects
- Loose carpet
- Elevator malfunctions like sudden drops that cause injury
- Injury from malfunctioning automatic doors
- Exposure to hazardous substances such as mold or lead
- Cracked sidewalks or parking lots
- Preventable drowning
- Loose stairs
- Construction defects that cause personal injury
- Dog bites or mauling
- Preventable fires
- Height differences in parking lots and sidewalks
Property owners should be responsible for keeping their property safe for others. However, determination of fault for a premises liability injury can get complicated, which is why you should discuss your case with an experienced attorney immediately after your accident.
Determining Premises Liability for Compensation
To be legally responsible for the injuries you suffered from a slip or fall on someone else’s property, one of the following must be true:
- The owner of the property directly caused the spill, worn or torn spot, or other slippery or dangerous surface.
- The owner of the property knew about the danger and chose to do nothing about it.
- The owner of the property should have known about the dangerous condition because a “reasonable” person taking care of the property would have discovered and removed or repaired the spot in question.
Judges and juries determine whether the owner of the property was “reasonable” or responsible by deciding if the owner took proper steps to keep the property safe.
Property Owner Negligence and Premises Liability
In determining the “reasonableness” of the owner, the law concentrates on whether the owner makes regular efforts to keep the property safe and clean.
Here are some questions to determine if the property owner’s negligence contributed to your accident:
- Had the dangerous spot (such as a torn or bulging area of carpet, floor, or ground) been there long enough that the owner should have known about it?
- Does the property owner have a regular routine for examining, cleaning and repairing the premises? If so, what proof do they have of regular maintenance?
- Could a simple sign or barrier have been placed to prevent people from slipping or tripping?
If the answer to one or more of these questions is yes, you may have a good case for premises liability compensation.
Premises Liability Insurance Investigations
If you have been injured on someone else’s property, BE ADVISED that the insurance company is not going to want to compensate you. Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately and DO NOT TALK to the insurance company without first discussing your case with an attorney.
Some questions an insurance company might ask you can include:
- Did you have a legitimate reason for being where the dangerous area was?
- Would a careful person have noticed the dangerous spot and avoided it, or walked carefully enough to not slip or trip?
- Were there any warnings that the spot might be dangerous?
- Were you doing anything that distracted you from paying attention to where you were going?
Your answers to these questions could make or break your case, which is precisely why you should seek legal counsel as soon as possible.
You are not expected to be aware of every danger or defect you encounter.
If you have been injured or are suffering because of the carelessness of someone else, let us offer you a free case evaluation. Send us an email about your accident & we will contact you today.
Free Case Evaluation
Send us an email about your accident & we will contact you today.
Saint Louis, Missouri Office
Lieser Law Firm, LLC
1034 S. Brentwood Blvd. PH-1C
Saint Louis, Missouri 63117
Southern Illinois Office
Lieser Law Firm, LLC
(By Appointment Only)
6 Executive Woods Court
Belleville, Illinois 62226