What is premises liability?
You do not want to consider the prospect of an injury while out and about, but the reality is, there is always a chance. However, what makes an incident qualify under premises liability versus an unfortunate accident?
Premises liability covers incidents that happen on someone else’s property. Whether it is an accident or a liability comes down to the conditions leading to the injury. Find out more about what may warrant a premises liability claim.
Was there visible damage?
One of the first things examined in the wake of an incident is whether the area had visible damage. For example, if a person trips and falls on the front stoop of a building, the danger is visible. Anything visible that is repairable presents a hazard. It is reckless for the owner to leave damage that risky lurking where anyone can get hurt. A condition that exists and not fixed is negligence. This means the owner is liable for the injury.
Was the hazard known?
Some hazards may not present as damage. In the case of an animal bite, the danger is present but not evident. If a homeowner knows his or her dog has the propensity for biting but fails to restrain the animal properly, premises liability applies. An animal that bites a visitor or passerby may inflict serious and traumatizing injury. Thus, when a homeowner fails to ensure the animal remains safely away, he or she is negligent.
The legal standard of premises liability lies in proving the owner knew of a risk and failed to rectify it. Even something as simple as a wet floor sign may help stave off a premises liability claim.