Slip & Fall Accidents, Negligent Security & More
What is premises liability? This is an area of civil liability that involves the negligence or carelessness of a premises/property owner that results in the injury of an “invitee” and in some cases, even trespassers. Simply slipping, falling or otherwise getting injured on someone else’s property does not necessarily constitute a premises liability claim. It must be clearly shown that the premises owner is liable for injuries due to blatantly hazardous conditions.
Premises liability accidents can happen at the workplace, at a public place (restaurant, swimming pool, etc.), at a school and even in someone’s backyard. These types of cases are best handled by skilled injury attorneys, such as the Los Angeles premises liability attorneys at Martinian Lawyers. Contact us today!
In order for a premises liability claim to be valid, three basic points must be clearly shown:
- The defendant in the case must be the individual or corporation that is actually in ownership of the property in question;
- The plaintiff (injured party) must have been allowed to be on the premises at the time of the accident or injury. In some cases, as was indicated earlier, trespassers may also be entitled to a claim;
- Negligence or gross negligence must be clearly proven. For example, an employer’s failure to fix dangerous working conditions.
If you believe, after reading these three points, that you or a loved one is entitled to a premises liability claim, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our firm as soon as possible.
Types of Premises Liability Claims
Drowning & Pool Accidents
If your loved one was involved in a drowning or near-drowning accident at a public pool, then you may have a claim. In some cases, lifeguards are not paying attention or they are not properly trained, the premises may not have been maintained or there may not have been adequate warning signs.
This term refers to a lack/failure/breach of security that resulted in the injury of an invitee. For example, if a security gate was broken at an apartment complex, and the landlord failed to get that gate repaired, any break-ins or security breaches that happened as a result could constitute negligent security. Negligent security could also refer to security guards and similar personnel who fail in their professional responsibility to guard and protect a premises to the best of their ability.
Slip & Fall
This is undoubtedly one of the most common types of premises liability claims. In a simple slip and fall accident, an invitee, employee, etc. is injured because of dangerous or poorly maintained property. For example, a construction worker who slips and falls off of scaffolding because their employer
Those who work at schools such as teachers, proctors and even office staff have a responsibility to care for their students. If a student is seriously injured or even abused on school premises, school staff and the overall institution could be held liable.
Duty of Care in Los Angeles Premises Liability Claims
“Duty of care” is a foundational principle in Los Angeles premises liability claims, defining the obligation of property owners and occupiers to ensure a safe environment for those on their property. This duty mandates that property owners, both public and private, take reasonable precautions to shield visitors from foreseeable hazards.
The depth of this duty varies with the type of visitor. For instance, invitees, such as store customers, are owed the highest level of care, requiring property owners to proactively identify and remedy potential risks. In contrast, licensees, like social guests, should be informed of known hazards, though owners aren’t compelled to inspect for unknown threats. Interestingly, even trespassers, who are on the property without permission, mustn’t be willfully harmed, and if injured due to owner negligence, there could be partial liability, particularly if the trespasser is a minor.
When this duty of care is breached, resulting in injuries, the property owners or managers can be held accountable. Such violations manifest when owners neglect maintenance, fail to repair issues, or don’t warn visitors of existing dangers. However, in establishing liability, the victim must demonstrate that the owner’s negligence was the direct cause of their injury.
Comparative Negligence in Los Angeles Premises Liability Claims
Comparative negligence plays a significant role in premises liability claims in Los Angeles. The state operates under a “pure comparative negligence” system, which is crucial for plaintiffs to understand when pursuing compensation for injuries sustained on someone else’s property.
Under the “pure comparative negligence” rule, the compensation a plaintiff can recover will be reduced by the percentage of their responsibility for the accident. This system allows plaintiffs to recover damages even if they are found to be partly at fault for their injuries. For example, if a plaintiff is found to be 30% at fault for an accident that resulted in $100,000 in damages, they would be eligible to receive $70,000, reflecting a 30% reduction in compensation.
This approach aims to allocate damages in a way that is proportionate to each party’s degree of fault. It is the responsibility of the jury or judge to determine the percentage of fault assigned to each party involved. Therefore, plaintiffs must present a strong case that minimally attributes fault to them, maximizing the potential compensation they can receive. Even plaintiffs who are predominantly at fault can secure some compensation for their losses, though it will be significantly reduced based on their contribution to the accident. The comparative negligence rule can significantly influence the outcome of a premises liability claim.
How Documentation Helps in Los Angeles Premises Liability Claims
Documentation plays an integral role in substantiating Los Angeles premises liability claims, providing a tangible record that supports the victim’s account of the events leading up to and following an accident. Below are some examples:
- Medical Records: These are fundamental as they not only demonstrate the extent and nature of the injuries sustained but also establish a direct link between the accident and the injuries claimed.
- Incident Reports: If an accident occurs in a commercial space, there’s often a requirement for the incident to be reported and documented immediately. This report can be pivotal in recording the details of the event accurately and timely.
- Photographic Evidence: Photos of the accident scene, injuries, and any hazardous conditions serve as powerful visual proof, helping to recreate the scenario for the jury or insurance adjuster.
- Billing Statements & Receipts: Documents detailing the costs incurred due to the accident (medical bills, property repair invoices, etc.) are vital for justifying the financial compensation sought.
- Lost Wages Documentation: If the victim has to miss work, records of lost income and a letter from the employer can substantiate claims for lost wages.
- Witness Statements: Testimonies from individuals who witnessed the incident can corroborate the victim’s account, providing additional perspectives that support the claim.
- Ownership Documents: Establishing who the liable parties are is crucial, and documentation of property ownership or rental agreements can help clarify this.
- Maintenance Logs & Previous Incidents: Records of past accidents or maintenance activities can demonstrate a history of negligence or recurring issues on the premises.
- Expert Testimonies: Statements from professionals, like building inspectors or medical experts, can offer authoritative opinions on the case’s specifics, supporting the victim’s claim from an expert standpoint.
Statute of Limitations in Los Angeles Premises Liability Claims
For victims pursuing premises liability claims in Los Angeles, understanding the statute of limitations is imperative. The statute of limitations establishes the period within which a lawsuit must be initiated to seek compensation for damages and injuries incurred on someone else’s property.
Generally, victims have two (2) years from the accident date to file personal injury claims, while for property damage, the timeframe extends to three (3) years. Furthermore, in wrongful death cases arising from premises liability incidents, the deceased’s estate or family must initiate a claim within two (2) years from the date of death, which might not necessarily align with the accident date.
Special circumstances and exceptions also apply to these general rules. For minor victims under 18, the countdown for the statute of limitations commences upon turning 18, although claims for their medical expenses must usually be filed within the standard two-year window. Victims who are mentally incapacitated may have the statute tolled until they regain capacity.
What Martinian Lawyers Will Provide For Your Los Angeles Premises Liability Claim
At Martinian Lawyers, our clients receive the advantage of our vast experience in navigating the intricate landscape of premises liability claims in Los Angeles. Over the years, we’ve handled numerous claims, equipping us with a unique understanding of the nuances and challenges specific to this area. Our seasoned attorneys, with their unparalleled expertise, know precisely how to build a compelling case, ensuring that victims receive the justice and compensation they rightfully deserve.
Beyond our technical know-how, what truly sets us apart is our compassion for those we represent. We genuinely understand the distress and disruption that a premises injury can cause, and we approach every case with an empathetic ear. Our extensive connections within the legal community and industry experts provide an added layer of support, ensuring that every claim we handle benefits from a comprehensive network of knowledge and resources. Choosing Martinian Lawyers means entrusting your case to a team that embodies both heart and skill.
Experience. Compassion. Expertise. Connections. These are the pillars upon which Martinian Lawyers stands, dedicated to championing your rights and delivering the justice you deserve.
Get Representation from Our Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorneys!
The Los Angeles personal injury attorneys at Martinian Lawyers can assist you if you or someone you love has been injured in an accident such as this. We can help hold the premises owners liable for the injuries that they caused you.
Our experienced los Angeles premises liability lawyers at Martinian Lawyers is dedicated to providing you with personalized and attentive legal support throughout the entirety of your claim. With a deep understanding of Los Angeles premises liability laws, we’ll meticulously build a robust case on your behalf, gathering essential evidence, negotiating with insurance companies, and advocating for you in court. We recognize the emotional and physical toll an accident can take, and we are committed to fighting relentlessly for the compensation you deserve to cover medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Your journey to recovery and justice is paramount to us.