Property owners have a responsibility to keep their properties safe and well maintained. If they are not properly maintained and someone gets hurt, the property owner can be held legally responsible. The person who is injured has the right to file a lawsuit called a premises liability claim.
What are the Most Common Causes of Premises Liability Cases?
Premises liability cases cover a wide range of accidents and defects. There are some causes of premises liability cases that are more common than others, however. Some examples include:
- Slip, trip and fall accidents
- Defective sidewalks
- Faulty stairs
- Elevator and escalator accidents
- Accidents involving children playing in unsafe or unsecured areas
- Being hit by a falling object
- Structural failings
- Faulty electrical wiring
- Inadequate security
- Dog bites
- Inadequate lighting
- Swimming pool accidents
These are just a few examples of the types of accident that can lead to a premises liability case. There are numerous possible accidents, injuries and scenarios that could lead to a case.
What are the Most Common Injuries Sustained in Premises Liability Cases?
A premises liability claim allows the injured victim the opportunity to seek compensation for their injuries. This can be extremely helpful depending on how serious the injuries are. Many premises liability cases involve serious injuries that require ongoing medical treatment or rehabilitation. Some of the most common injuries claimed in premises liability cases include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Torn ligaments or muscles
- Joint injuries
- Neck injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Electric shock injuries
- Cuts and lacerations
- Illness caused by exposure to toxic chemicals
In addition to physical injuries, many types of premises liability accidents or injuries can cause trauma and emotional distress. The emotional element of a premises liability case is as important as the physical element.
What Kind of Compensation Can I Expect in a Premises Liability Claim?
If you qualify to file a premises liability claim, you will have the burden of proving your claim. That means that you must prove to the court that you were injured as a result of the property owner’s negligence. If the property owner knew about the danger or should have known, but failed to correct it, then he or she was negligent.
If you prove your case to the court, you may be eligible to recover damages. Damages refers to your losses as a result of the injury. Damages you may qualify for include:
Economic damages are losses that are easily quantifiable and provable. These are real losses or expenses, such as:
- Medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Loss of income
- Loss of earning capacity
- Prescription or medical device costs
Non-economic damages are losses not directly related to your finances. These losses are more difficult to quantify, but they are as important to your case. Examples of non-economic damages you may qualify for include:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of companionship (applicable in cases where the victim dies)
Determining what damages you may qualify for and the value of your case is not a simple process. You must work with a premises liability lawyer to determine how much in damages you should pursue. Your lawyer will consider factors such as your real losses, your future prognosis, your ability to gain or re-gain employment, your emotional status, and the level of negligence or malice present in the case. It is highly recommended that you do not attempt to file a premises liability lawsuit without first consulting a lawyer.