Slip & Falls: The 3 Elements of a Premises Liability Claim
Accidents happen all the time, and some of these accidents can cause serious health problems to the people who experience them. For example, slip and fall accidents are the leading cause of accidental death of seniors. However, personal injury claims only happen if the accident can be pinned on the negligence of another individual. In fact, in order to file a premises liability claim, there are 3 elements you need to have in the case.
Proof of Liability
To file a premises liability claim against the owner of a property, you need to prove the owner is legally responsible for your injury. Liability requires a property owner to have caused a spill, worn or torn spot, or other dangerous surfaces or items to be underfoot. Likewise, the owner of the property or an employee of the owner must have known of the hazardous surface or area but did nothing about it. Last, the owner or employee should have known of the dangerous surface because a “reasonable” person taking care of the property would have discovered and removed or repaired it.
“Reasonable” people use common sense in most cases because they are responsible for their property. If common sense dictates the owner should’ve known it would cause a problem, they are liable for the accident. All negligence claims hinge on whether the defendant acted in a reasonable way. The law determines reasonability by concentrating on whether the owner makes regular and thorough efforts to keep the property safe and clean. For example, if you tripped on an uneven floor the owner knew about for years but never fixed, the owner was unreasonable by not repairing the floor issue when he or she first discovered it.
Carelessness of the Victim
In all slip and fall cases, the court must decide how much your own carelessness contributed to the accident. Rules of comparative negligence help measure your own reasonableness in going where you did just before the slip and fall occurred. If you didn’t act logically before choosing to walk in a specific location, you might not be awarded the full amount because you were partially responsible for your own accident.
If you’re interested in pursuing a premises liability lawsuit after your accident, talk to one of our skilled Los Angeles premises liability attorneys as soon as possible. We can look at your case and offer recommendations about your best course of action.
Contact us for a free case consultation today!