How Are Slip-And-Fall Or Trip-And-Fall Injuries Related To Premises Liability Law?
Slip-and-fall cases are a part of premises liability law as it relates to property. Property owners have an obligation to ensure safety and keep their property in good repair. If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall, recognize where the hazard has occurred – a convenience store owned by an individual or business entity, an apartment building owned by a landlord, an office building owned by a corporation. Most private, commercial, and public properties are insured for safety hazards. Usually, the property owner’s insurance or commercial liability insurance will cover losses for personal injury.
To be held legally responsible for injuries suffered as the result of a slip, trip, and fall accident, in general one of the three following conditions must be satisfied:
- the property owner or an employee caused the hazard to occur, e.g. spilling a slippery substance on the floor or leaving a trip hazard in the middle of a common area
- the property owner or an employee knew about the dangerous hazard, but did nothing to address it, i.e. not fixing a broken sidewalk or crumbling staircase
- the property owner or an employee should have known about the dangerous hazard because a reasonable person in charge of the property would have discovered the hazard and repaired it. i.e. the property owner has a duty to inspect their property and discovery defective conditions.
Slip and falls are but one part of premises liability law. Premises Liability law also may include any situation where an owner of premises can be held legally liable for injuries sustained by another person while on those premises. For example, bars, night clubs, sporting events, anywhere open to the public, can result in a claim for premises liability. In addition to being injured due to a physical attribute of the property, you can also have a claim if injured due to a third party on property where you have a reasonable expectation of safety. These claims are often referred to as negligent security claims and they typically involve places like hospitals, nursing homes, apartment complexes, bars, nightclubs, schools, daycare centers, and amusement parks.
What Are The Common Causes Of Slip-And-Fall Or Trip-And-Fall Incidents?
Slip-and-fall accidents are part of premises liability law which stem from common law torts. This is just a fancy way of saying slip and fall accidents are accidents that occur on someone else’s property due to their oversight or mistake. A landowner has a duty to keep their premises safe for people. They can be held liable for physical harm caused to another person as a result of a dangerous condition that they either knew about or should have known about, had they exercised reasonable care in maintaining a safe premise. Landowners—including those who own establishments that are open to the public, such as bars, stores, daycares, and grocery stores—have an even higher duty to keep their premises safe, are responsible for inspecting their premises, posting warnings of dangerous conditions, and fixing the condition within a reasonable time.
Some of the most common causes of slip and fall injuries include:
- Negligent Snow and Ice Removal
- Including: Negligent Removal, Failure to Remove Snow and Ice, Black Ice Refreeze, Pooling Water Runoffs.
- Uneven Walking Surface
- Including: Loose floorboard, Loose Mats, Parking Lot Pot Holes, Defective Sidewalks, Defective Stairwells, Mis-Leveling Elevators
- Poor Lighting
- Including: Stairwell, Parking lot, and apartment complex lighting.
- Environmental Hazards
- Including: Broken Handrails, Stray Cords, Poor Training of a Business’ Employees.
For more information on Slip/Trip And Fall Cases & Premises Liability, a personalized case evaluation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling Troy Crichton, Esq. at (267) 225-3317 today.
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