When you leave your house to run errands, shop at your favorite store, or visit a friend, you do not expect to suffer a severe injury. However, an unbalanced chair, exposed nail, or even a loose wire could create dangerous hazards that put you at risk of harm. Property owners have a responsibility to keep you safe when you are on their premises, meaning you could seek restitution after an accident. These types of accidents often leave victims facing not only pain, but rising expenses and overwhelming stress.
With a Wesley Chapel premises liability lawyer representing you, you could build a strong claim against the other party and obtain the compensation you need to fund your recovery. From falling objects to inadequate security, our experienced personal injury attorneys have handled several premises liability cases. We are prepared to help you achieve the best possible outcome in your claim.
What Types of Accidents Are Considered Premises Liability Cases?
When thinking of the types of accidents that could occur on someone else’s property, you might automatically think of slips, trips, and falls. These may be some of the most common incidents, but many other hazardous situations could result in accidents:
- Exposure to toxic chemicals
- Inadequate security
- Insufficient supervision at pools
- Malfunctioning elevators and escalators
- Structural collapses (stairs, porches, walkways)
- Aggressive dogs
- Swimming pool accidents
- Daycare injuries
If you visit another person’s property, you will most likely be unaware of the potential dangers you might face. Consequently, the person in control of the property has a responsibility to keep you safe. If they fail to do so, a dedicated premises liability lawyer could help you hold them accountable.
What Responsibilities do Property Owners have in Wesley Chapel?
State law requires property owners and operators to provide guests with a safe environment. However, the steps they must take to ensure your safety depends on their relationship with you. The law categorizes plaintiffs in these cases as invitees, licensees, or trespassers.
What is the Duty of Care Owed to an Invitee?
Invitees are people who enter a property to conduct business. For example, if you go to a restaurant for dinner, you are an invitee. Property owners owe the highest level of care to invitees. They must regularly inspect their property for hazards and take appropriate remedial actions.
If the property owner cannot promptly complete the required maintenance, they must warn their guests of the danger. Additionally, they can be held liable for threats they were unaware of but should have known about. However, Florida Statutes Annotated § 768.0755 sets a narrow exception to the inspection requirement.
If a non-permanent substance is discharged and creates an unsafe situation, such as water on a floor, owners cannot be held liable unless they had actual or constructive knowledge of the spilled item.
Responsibility to Protect Licensees
Licensees are social guests, family, and friends. If you go to your friend’s house to watch a movie, you are a licensee. The duty of care owed to these individuals is very similar to the care owed to invitees. Landholders must maintain their property and buildings and make repairs as needed.
Can Trespassers File Premises Liability Claims?
Trespassers are intruders with no right to be on the property. Although these individuals do not enjoy a general duty of care, Fla. Stat. Ann. § 768.075(2) outlines some limited exceptions to this rule. You might have a valid claim if the property owner set up hazards to discourage entry onto their land. Skilled attorneys familiar with this area of law could help you determine if you have the right to file a premises liability case, whether you were an invitee, licensee, or trespasser.
What if a Government Entity in Wesley Chapel Owns the Property?
Different rules apply when making an injury claim against a government entity. As stated in Fla. Stat. Ann. § 768.28, there is a specific procedure for notifying the opposing party of your intent to pursue a claim. Additionally, this statute limits the compensatory damages you may recover and prohibits punitive damages awards. A diligent lawyer could guide you through this process so you do not inadvertently miss deadlines and undermine your premises liability claim.
Work with a Wesley Chapel Premises Liability Attorney
When you legally enter another person’s property, you should not have to worry about your safety. You should be able to put your trust in the property owner to keep you safe. Unfortunately, the occupier or manager of the premises might fail to meet the requisite standard of care, causing you to suffer injuries.
If you were harmed after a preventable accident on someone else’s property, you may be uncertain whether you have a valid legal claim and at a loss with how to proceed. Our Wesley Chapel premises liability lawyers are here to support you throughout your case and give you the counsel and advice to move forward Click the button below for a free consultation so that you can focus on getting better while we take care of everything else.