Premises liability is an umbrella term referencing a range of personal injury scenarios. Dog bite attacks often lead to premises liability claims, as do rare scenarios where a roof spontaneously collapses on people visiting a building.
The typical premises liability claim will result from one of two failings on the part of the property owner. If you experienced one of the two scenarios below, then you may have grounds for either an insurance claim or possibly a civil lawsuit.
Slipping can happen for all kinds of reasons, and some of them won’t be the responsibility of a property owner or business. If you slip because you wore high heels and also had several alcoholic beverages before stopping at a store, the business likely could not have prevented your fall.
However, if you tripped because of a wrinkled-up rug or an unsecured power cord, the business could have prevented that. The same is true of a slip-and-fall that results from spilled merchandise, moisture accumulating near air conditioners or improper sidewalk maintenance. If the business could have prevented your injury with better maintenance, they may be liable for your costs.
A crime in an unmonitored space
Is there a parking lot outside your apartment complex that is pitch black at night? Is the bathroom for the local bar in the basement, where no one else can hear anything? There are certain times when businesses can reasonably predict that opportunistic criminals will target specific spaces in their business.
Proper lighting, security professionals and surveillance cameras can all be crucial deterrents that prevent impulse crimes like burglaries and assaults. When someone falls victim to a criminal act that was reasonably predictable and might have been prevented with better security or lighting, the person harmed may have grounds for a premises liability claim.
The intersection of an incident being predictable and preventable makes it a negligence matter and therefore a potential source of premises liability. When you have provable losses, like a broken bone that caused hospital bills or major property losses, you may be able to file an insurance claim using the business’s coverage. Other times, it may be necessary for you to go to court to seek compensation for the cost of the injuries you suffered.
Learning more about the basics of premises liability claims could help you hold negligent property owners responsible.