Premises Liability: A Powerful Injury Concept
By Chris Kramer
An elderly man's body is scalded by a sudden burst of 180-degree water in the shower...a nightclub fire in Rhode Island causes the death of nearly one hundred...a woman misses an unmarked step at a Texas hospital parking garage and breaks her hip...
What do all of these seemingly unrelated injuries have in common? They involve what is referred to in personal injury law as "premises liability." The concept behind premises liability is that the owner of property - store, restaurant, private property, etc. - has the obligation to maintain that property in a way that makes it safe for the public and/or anyone who may be affected by its maintenance.
This may mean any situation where owner negligence has resulted in a personal injury, including a slip and fall injury on an icy sidewalk, a drowning in a private swimming pool that has not been properly gated and locked, or overgrown trees on private property that create a hazard, just to name a few.
If the owner was or should have been aware of risks and failed to act to remove those risks-called "negligence"-then he or she may be held liable for damage or injuries caused.
Personal Injury: Who is at Fault?
The property owner typically cannot delegate this responsibility and pass off liability to another entrusted with physical maintenance of property. For example, if an owner of apartment buildings subcontracts to different individuals for repair work, renovation, landscape maintenance and other work, he or she is still responsible for any liability associated with the apartments.
In the case with the elderly man who was burned in the shower mentioned above, not only did the company who provided in-home nursing for that man pay for its liability in failing to properly supervise the shower, but the property owner and others paid for their contribution, either directly or indirectly, for the shoddy work that led to the improper regulation of temperature and the burns.
Premises Liability Compensation
In many cases, homeowner's or business insurance cover premises liability for damage or injuries. If you are concerned about payment or receipt of compensation for a personal injury on someone else's property, you can examine the insurance policy for that property to find out if it covers injuries on the property and in what amount.
A personal injury lawyer can also advise you on the financial implications of a personal injury and who might be responsible as owner of the property where the injury occurred.
Discuss Your Case with a Personal Injury Lawyer
As you can see by some of the issues raised, premises liability cases can be very complex. In fact, depending on the nature of your injury and what medical opinion and legal experts judge to be the cause of your injury, you may have recourse to premises liability in a situation of which you weren't even aware. Or, a clear-cut premises liability case may be judged to be only a small percentage the fault of the property owner, and you may receive little to no compensation.
The personal injury lawyers who sponsor Total Injury can explore the difficult issues that your slip and fall or other personal injury raises. A personal injury attorney can go to trial to prove negligence in premises liability as the cause of your injury.
Personal Injury Attorneys and Premise Liability
At Total Injury, we make finding a personal injury lawyer who practices in your area especially easy. Simply fill out our free case evaluation form or call our toll-free number at 877-288-7564, and we'll connect you with a local personal injury attorney within minutes who can provide you with a free case evaluation.
Additional Premises Liability and Injury Resources: