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Premise Liability Lawyer
The legal term “premise liability” implies little more than “the property, also known as the premise,” having some responsibility. It doesn’t matter whether the property directly caused the harm; if it can be shown that the property owners had the capacity to act and didn’t, they may be held liable.
Here is an example of how that may occur in real life. Shopper A may be in a store when Shopper B slips on the wet floor and knocks down a display. The display then knocks down Shopper B. The store did not directly cause Shopper B’s injuries, but the negligence on their premise did.
Under premises liability rules, if the grocery store failed to take action that would have made the accident easier, it might be held responsible as well.
The Responsible Party In Premises Liability
Say that you were entering a business you thought was secure and slipped on a wet, icy floor. Owners or possessors of that establishment are legally responsible for the safety of their consumers. This implies that the premises, including any business, store, or school facility, may be held liable for any kind of harm or accident that can happen there. These locations are required by state legislation to be safe and risk-free.
Premises liability claims can include any accidents that happen on or around a property during its operation or maintenance, such as:
- Slippery or icy surfaces
- Broken pavement
- Poor lighting
- Faulty electrical wiring
- Falling objects or merchandise
- Defective equipment, such as stairs or escalators
There are also security-related accidents that can occur, such as:
- Improperly trained staff
- Broken security gates
- Failure to warn about unsafe conditions
- Missing or inadequate signage
There are a variety of additional incidents that may be utilized as premises liability claims, such as animal assaults or drowning instances. These sorts are more often associated with personal homes rather than commercial enterprises.
It is not enough to be hurt at a business to get compensation. It is necessary to show that the property’s owner was involved in creating the hazardous environment, knew about the problem but did nothing about it, or informed customers of any potential hazard.
If this can be proved, the harmed party may be awarded for medical expenditures, missed earnings, and pain and suffering.
How A Texas Premises Liability Attorney Can Assist You
You may not know how to fight for proper compensation from property owners and their insurance carriers if you don’t have a legal background or a track record of litigating premises liability claims in Texas. An experienced local attorney from Texas Personal Injury Lawyers can assist you with premises liability claims. Your Texas premises liability lawyer can advocate for fair compensation if you suffered catastrophic or life-altering injuries or if a loved one passed away in a premises-related accident. During every phase of your case, an attorney may answer your queries and provide you with peace of mind.
We Handle A Wide Range Of Premises Liability Claims
In Texas, premises liability law covers a wide range of catastrophic events. Unfortunately, these types of incidents are all too prevalent. According to the National Floor Safety Institute, slip and fall cases alone send over one million individuals to US emergency departments every year.
Texas premises liability attorneys at Texas Personal Injury Lawyers have years of experience representing those injured by property owner negligence. We handle many types of premises liability cases throughout Texas:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Animal attacks and dog bites
- Workplace accidents
- Amusement park accidents
- Store or restaurant accidents
- Swimming pool accidents
- Child injuries
- Elevator and escalator accidents
- Negligent security
- Structural collapses
- Exposure to toxic substances
These are examples of common accidents that often lead to premises liability claims. You may have grounds for a claim, however, after any type of accident due to negligent property maintenance in Texas. A careless property owner can create many hazards and injury risks through the inadequate care and maintenance of a property.
The Basics Of Premises Liability
The plaintiff in a premises liability case in Texas must show that the defendant is liable for damages. The following three things must be proved in order to win on a premises liability claim:
- A legal duty owed by the defendant to the plaintiff
- Breach of that legal duty
- Damages caused by the breach of that legal duty
In a premises liability case, the defendant’s duty to the plaintiff is determined by the classification of the plaintiff at the time of the accident. Visitors are categorized as licensees, invitees, or intruders.
- Licensees: This is a person who has been given permission to enter the property by the owner. Furthermore, the individual is there for their own reasons (social guest, salesperson, etc.). When a danger is known to the property owner but not to the licensee, the owner has an obligation to inform the licensee about any hazardous conditions on the land that are known by the owner but not by the licensee (hollows in the ground, loose steps, pointy objects, and so on). Alternatively, dangerous situations may be made safe.
- Invitees: An invitee is someone who enters land with the owner’s knowledge and permission, for the mutual benefit of both parties, and is an inviter (business patrons, meter readers, etc.). An invitee is granted the utmost level of care. The owner must inform or safeguard any hazardous conditions that he or she is aware of, or could have discovered through a reasonable inspection.
- Trespassers: A wrongdoer enters another’s property without legal authorization or permission. The only obligation a trespasser is under is to avoid causing injury intentionally, wantonly, or through reckless disregard for his own safety.
The Principle Of Attraction Nuisance
Landowners must be aware of the law of attractive nuisance, which holds that a landowner may be held responsible for injuries to kids who trespass on his or her property if the injury is caused by a hazardous thing or condition on the land (such as a swimming pool, construction equipment, or gravel pit) that is likely to attract children who are unable to appreciate the risks posed by the object or condition.
The principle of attractive nuisance advises property owners to take all necessary steps to keep kids away from the thing or condition. This might include erecting barriers, locking doors, and so on.
Defenses To A Premises Liability Lawsuit
If a property owner can demonstrate one of the following scenarios in a premises liability lawsuit, they will not be held responsible:
- For example, if the injured person was aware of a hazardous condition before they were hurt (for instance, they knew the step was crumbling yet they persisted in ascending it),
- Any evidence of the hazardous circumstance being open and obvious (a condition is “open and obvious” if a reasonable person should have noticed it)
- When property is illegally used, it can cause an accident.
What If Someone Is Injured While Working On Your Property?
What if, for example, an independent contractor was cleaning your gutters from the second story and fell to the ground because the gutters weren’t properly secured? Aside from insurance concerns, who is responsible?
Unless Chapter 95 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code says otherwise, a property owner is not responsible for any injuries incurred by an independent contractor as a result of a defective workplace unless:
- Except for the right to start and stop it or to see how far it has gone, the owner of the property has complete control over the work done; and
- The landowner was conscious of the threat.
What Are The Various Types Of Compensation Available In A Premises Liability Lawsuit?
If you’re the victim of an accident caused by a third party, you may be eligible for compensation for the following:
- Past and future medical care
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional scarring
- Legal costs (in some cases)
Punitive damages (if the defendant’s behavior was deliberate or extremely negligent)
What To Do If You Get Hurt On Someone Else’s Property
Following an accident on someone else’s property, there are a number of things you should do right away:
- Step 1. Get help. Call emergency services immediately on 911.
- Step 2. Take pictures of the area. Take pictures of the hazardous situation that caused your harm, if possible. If you tumbled down a rotten step, for example, take photographs from various angles of the step. The more photographs there are, the better. If you’re too wounded to snap photos yourself, enlist the help of a friend, family member, or witness instead.
- Step 3. Gather witness information. Make a note of the names, addresses, and phone numbers of the other individuals who were there when the accident occurred. If you choose to file a claim, their account of events might be valuable.
- Step 4. Seek medical help. Make sure you visit a doctor and follow their instructions. You don’t want the defense to claim that you didn’t try to get better or that you weren’t genuinely harmed.
- Step 5. Document everything. Write down what you recall as soon as possible while the memory is still fresh to ensure important details aren’t forgotten, in addition to saving all bills, letters of correspondence, and reports connected with your accident.
Who’s To Blame For A Premises Liability Claim?
Owners of property have a duty to keep their premises safe for visitors and guests. As a result, the owner of the property will usually be held responsible in a premises liability lawsuit (even if they are not at home at the time of the incident). An owner can be an individual (such as the owner of a home), a company (such as the owner of a store), or a government agency (such as the owner of a city pool).
Landlords, property managers, and renters might be held responsible in certain situations. While Texas law holds landlords accountable for the cleanliness of their properties when they hand them over to tenants, the tenant is generally considered to be at fault for any injuries incurred by visitors to the rental home after that.
What Is The Legal Definition Of An “open and obvious” Condition?
Open and obvious conditions are those the court deems should have been noticed by a reasonable person. In other words, whether the plaintiff was aware of the danger isn’t significant. Rather, it’s whether a reasonable person would understand that the situation is hazardous.
Should You Contact The Insurance Company That Covers The Property Owner?
It’s not a good idea to contact the owner’s insurance company before consulting an attorney, in general. Many insurance adjusters just want to get the facts of a situation so they can make a claim for compensation. Some insurance adjusters, on the other hand, are more focused on getting you to make a statement that will harm your case so they can refuse your claim. An experienced attorney can work with the insurance company of the owner to get your claim adjudicated in a timely and fair manner while also avoiding any legal issues.
What Factors Should I Examine When Looking For The Best Premises Liability Attorney?
Make a list of attorneys in your region with the necessary background, expertise, and knowledge to choose the best. Determine if the attorneys have a positive reputation for resolving issues similar to yours.
In the end, you’ll know who you want to work with before booking any firm. Schedule a free initial consultation with each attorney (remove attorneys that don’t provide one). In person meetings will help you determine whether they’re a suitable match for your needs.
Do You Require The Services Of An Attorney When Handling Your Premises Liability?
You have the option of handling your premises liability claim on your own. You may, however, secure the best possible result in your case by hiring a personal injury lawyer. Attorneys with years of expertise investigating problems, gathering evidence, and negotiating with insurance companies represent skilled attorneys.
An attorney also demonstrates to the other side that you believe in your case and are not afraid to go to trial.
Is It Possible To Obtain Free Legal Assistance For Your Premises Liability Claim?
Whether or not you can locate a free or low-cost attorney to work on your claim depends in large part on your financial situation and location. Consider contacting your local bar association’s referral service for free or reduced-cost attorney possibilities.
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