When you enter someone else’s property – whether it be your neighbor’s home or the grocery store – the owner and/or operator of the premises owes you a certain duty of care to maintain the property and protect you from foreseeable harm.
If the owner or operator of that property fails to do so and you are injured as a result, they could be found liable for your injuries and help responsible for covering the costs of expenses you incur because of that injury.
While all of this might sound easy enough, this type of law – known as premises liability law – is quite complex. Rather than being straightforward, it includes variables such as your purpose for being on the property, whether or not the owner or operator adhered to all applicable municipal codes and state laws, and whether the injuries you suffered were reasonably foreseeable.
Given these complexities, it is often a good idea to seek legal representation if you are injured on someone else’s property. A skilled premises liability lawyer at Kirkendall Dwyer LLP, will know how to navigate your case and help you seek the most favorable outcome possible. Reach out to our personal injury attorneys to learn more.
Types of Visitors
To determine the viability of your premises liability case, it is necessary to consider your purpose on the property in question. In Texas, there are three different classifications of visitors:
- Invitees: An invitee is someone who has permission to be on the property in question. A customer at a store is an example of an invitee.
- Licensees: A licensee also has permission to be on the property in question. An example would be a licensed contractor who enters the premises.
- Trespassers: A trespasser is someone who enters a piece of property without the owner’s permission. Property owners do not owe trespassers the same duty of care that they owe invitees and licensees. The only exception to this is if the trespasser is a child and the property features an unsecured “attractive nuisance,” such as an open pool, construction equipment, or anything else that might lure a child who doesn’t know any better.
While there are some minor differences in the duties a property owner owes an invitee versus a licensee, they are generally the same, because in both cases the visitor has permission to be on the property. Typically, the property owner must warn both invitees and licensees about hazardous conditions on the property and make efforts to remedy those conditions in a timely manner.
What this means is that if an invitee or licensee is injured on someone else’s property, and the property owner failed to exercise their duty of care, the invitee or licensee would have a sound basis for legal action, whereas the trespasser would not.
Common Types of Premises Liability Cases
Certain types of premises liability cases occur more often than others. Some of these cases include:
- Swimming pool accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Inadequate or negligent security
- Heavy equipment and machinery accidents involving escalators, elevators, and moving walkways
If you or a loved one were injured in a property accident, the best way forward could be to hire an exceptional premises liability attorney. A quality premises liability lawyer will know how to best present your case and ensure the property owner is held accountable for failing to exercise the duty of care they owed you.
When a Property Owner Might be Found Liable
If a property owner or operator fails to adequately maintain their premises or warn you and other visitors of hazards which cannot be remedied in a timely manner, they could be found liable for any resulting injuries. This can look different on different properties and in different situations. It might include:
- A homeowner who failed to shovel their front step in a timely manner
- A store owner who failed to warn shoppers of slippery floors
- A gym that failed to comply with all necessary safety requirements when operating a swimming pool
Of course, all of these scenarios are contingent on the injury and harm that a visitor suffers due to these hazardous conditions.
Recoverable Losses in a Premises Liability Case
A person can be affected in many different ways when they are injured on another person’s property. Some of these effects are physical, while others are emotional or psychological.
In many cases, it is possible to recover monetary compensation for losses and damages in premises liability cases. Examples of recoverable losses after a property accident include:
- Lost wages if you have to miss work because you are injured
- Medical costs for doctors’ visits, surgery, and other medical bills
- Rehabilitative costs as you try to recover from the injury
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress and loss of enjoyment of life
Some of these costs are easier to calculate than others, and a skilled premises liability lawyer can help you with the calculation of your losses. With expert knowledge of case law and the most recent settlements, Kirkendall Dwyer LLP lawyers can help ensure you don’t leave any money on the table.
Work with a Premises Liability Attorney at Our Firm
To maximize your chances of success in a premises liability case, retaining an experienced lawyer is a must. At Kirkendall Dwyer LLP, we have been handling premises liability cases for years and would be glad to start with a free consultation of your case.
From there, our premises liability lawyers ensure the utmost effort and ethics as we gather evidence and witness testimony on your behalf. Finally, you can rest assured that we will not make any money unless you do. We work on a contingency basis, meaning we do not charge any up front fees. This means you can contact us risk-free today to see if you have a solid premises liability case.