What is Premises Liability?
The moment you enter a business, a home, a facility, or any other place that is considered another party's domain or property, the owner of the property is implicitly acknowledging an agreement with you, the visitor or patron, that the premises is safe. In other words, any and all hazards should be cleared or at least pointed out in an obvious manner so you don't experience an accident and get hurt. If the property owner fails to adhere to this agreement, and his or her negligent maintenance of the premises leads to an accident that adversely affects you, he or she can be held liable for all related damages.
For many years, the San Diego personal injury attorneys at the Jurewitz Law Group | Injury & Accident Lawyers have provided quality legal representation to clients with premises liability lawsuits. With our nuanced understanding of California's premises liability laws and extensive experience working these types of claim cases, we have established a reputation for success. If you have any questions regarding your premises liability lawsuit, please call us today at (888) 233-5020 for a free consultation.
Do I Have a Valid Premises Liability Case in San Diego?
California premises liability laws hold property owners to a reasonable standard of care that may include adequate upkeep of the premises, employment of competent security and staff, and proper lighting, amongst many other safety factors. The following circumstances must be present in order for premises liability laws to apply:
- The defendant retains ownership of the land or "premises."
- The plaintiff must have been an invitee or a licensee.
- The accident must have occurred due to negligence on the part of the defendant.
- California law requires that property owners keep children safe on their premises, whether they belong there or not.
Property owners are also expected to maintain public sidewalks in front of their premises. They must clear any potential hazards that may pose risk of accident to anyone who passes by on a sidewalk or on a public street.
What's the Difference Between Invitees, Licensees, and Trespassers?
Invitees are people who are allowed on the premises to conduct business with the owner. Shoppers are the most obvious example of this. All invitees are owed the highest duty of care.
A licensee is a person who is invited onto the premises of the owner's property for non-commercial purposes. A friend or other social guest would be considered a licensee.
Although trespassers are owed the lowest duty of care, they are still given some rights. While they do not have to be warned about any naturally occurring hazards, such as thorny bushes, they must be informed of dangerous, man-made hazards, that is, if the property owner is even aware of their trespassing while it is occurring.
What are the Common Conditions in San Diego Premises Liability Cases?
A premises liability claim case can be based upon a variety of conditions. The most common conditions include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Slippery or wet conditions
- Lack of adequate security measures
- Toxic exposure
- Poorly maintained stairways and elevators
- Dangerous animals
An accident may result in all kinds of injuries, including broken bones, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, internal organ damage, illness, and more.