Understanding Premises Liability Law – An Overview
Written by Cooper and Friedman on July 5, 2018
Premise liability law is a legal concept used in personal injury cases to determine who is liable for an injury that occurred on a particular premise. If a property owner failed to use reasonable care, and an injury was sustained by a visitor, they may be held liable for compensation. Depending on the case, the injured party could be compensated. Compensation would be for medical bills, pain and suffering, and time off work among other things.
In order to hold a property owner accountable, an injured party must prove that the owner was aware of unsafe or defective conditions and didn’t attempt to remedy them. These conditions must then be shown to have caused injury.
Property owners have a general responsibility to provide adequate ownership and maintenance of their property so others don’t get hurt. Personal injuries can occur at stores, restaurants, parking lots, places of work, residential areas, and public property as well as other venues.
5 Common instances where premise liability law is utilized:
● Slips and falls
● Swimming pool accidents
● Assault due to lack of security
● Animal bites
● Burns or carbon monoxide poisoning from toxic fumes and chemicals
If a walkway wasn’t lit well enough, there were no signs warning of a wet floor, ice wasn’t treated with salt, or a body of water wasn’t gated off, the property owner in question could be found liable for injuries as a result of negligence.
However, just because a person is injured on someone else’s property, does not necessarily mean the property owner is liable. In order to determine if duty is owed to the injured party, the context of why the visitor was on the property must first be decided. The law usually defines a visitor as either an invitee, licensee, or trespasser.
Invitees, Licensees & Trespassers
An invitee is a visitor that was implied or directly given an invitation. Invitees tend to be those who have a mutual benefit with the owner for being on the property. Invitees for example are usually in a place of business. A licensee on the other hand is most likely on the property for their own purpose; either as a friend, family member, or salesperson.
While invitees and licensees both have permission to be on the property, a trespasser does not. Thus property owners are most often found not responsible for injuries sustained to a trespasser. The only exception to this is if he or she is a child.
If you were injured on someone else’s property, it’s recommended that you consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer like the lawyers at Cooper and Friedman PLLC. Premises liability law is complex, and usually varies state to state. While every case is different, it’s important that evidence and records are compiled before the statute of limitations expires.
Legal cases, especially personal injury cases, are often stressful to deal with. However, at Cooper & Friedman Law Office, we have years of experience working with personal injury cases and we will work with you to make the process as stress-free as possible. If you or someone you love needs a personal injury lawyer in Kentuckiana, contact us today for a free consultation. You can reach the Cooper & Friedman Law Office by calling 502-459-7555 or contacting us on our website by clicking here.