Premises liability is the legal concept that property owners have a duty to their visitors and guests to ensure that the property has no unreasonable dangers, such as tripping or falling hazards. If a property owner fails in this duty to maintain adequately safe conditions, and this failure is the cause of injury to a person visiting their property, premises liability gives the victim of these injuries a pathway to recover compensation for the damage inflicted upon them.
One of the responsibilities of property owners, especially owners of public places that receive large amounts of foot traffic, is to clearly mark any potential tripping or slipping hazards. This is why stores often keep “wet floor” signs on areas that have been recently moped, or why short steps are often painted yellow to be sure that they are obvious to people passing by. The general standard is that the property owner must act reasonably to prevent what might be a dangerous condition. Though the safest thing to do is eliminate the hazard altogether, it can also be acceptable just to make the hazard clear to see.
It is important to note that there is also a standard to the visitor or guest to avoid acting in a careless manner that might lead to their injury. If there is substantial evidence that the victim was failing to act reasonably, then they will have immense difficulty receiving any compensation through premises liability.
This standard is in place because of the very real danger that an unnoticeable tripping hazard has on any person, especially if they are elderly or disabled. Falling can lead to broken bones, concussions, and costly emergency room visits. The severity of this should not be trivialized by property owners, and the importance of eliminating or labeling tripping hazards and other dangers cannot be emphasized enough.
If you have been the victim of a tripping and falling accident caused by an unnoticeable hazard, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney Atlanta GA trusts right away to see if you will be able to receive compensation for your injuries and medical expense. The carelessness of others should not be a cost to you, and with the help of a skilled premise liability attorney you can rest easy and focus on healing, without the stress of lengthy legal battle.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Andrew R. Lynch, P.C. for their insight into premises liability.