There are many legal concepts that business owners need to be aware of, and premises liability is one of them. This area of law deals with property owners’ responsibility for injuries on their property. If you are a business owner, it is important to understand how premises liability works to protect yourself from lawsuits. This article will discuss seven legal facts about premises liability that every business owner should know.
1. Property owners must keep their premises safe.
Under premises liability law, property owners have a duty to keep their premises safe for visitors. This includes taking reasonable steps to ensure that the property is free of hazards and is well-maintained. If a property owner fails to take these steps and someone is injured; as a result, the property owner may be held liable for the injuries.
2. The type of visitor determines the level of care that must be provided.
Not all visitors are treated equally under premises liability law. The law recognizes three types of visitors: invitees, licensees, and trespassers. Invitees are people who are invited onto the property for business or other commercial purposes. Licensees are people allowed onto the property for social or other personal reasons. Trespassers are people who enter the property without permission.
Property owners owe the highest duty of care to invitees. This means they must take reasonable steps to ensure the property is safe for invitees. For example, if a business owner knows that there is a dangerous condition on the premises, they must take steps to warn invitees or repair the condition.
Property owners owe a lower duty of care to licensees and trespassers. However, they still have a duty to warn licensees and trespassers of any dangerous conditions on the premises. Additionally, property owners cannot willfully injure licensees or trespassers.
3. There are some exceptions to premises liability law.
There are a few circumstances in which a property owner may not be held liable for injuries on their property. One exception is if the injured person was trespassing at the time of the accident. Another exception is if the injury was caused by an act of nature, such as a storm or earthquake. Additionally, some states have enacted laws that limit the amount of damages that can be recovered in premises liability lawsuits.
4. Different rules govern injuries that occur on public property.
Injuries that occur on public property, such as a sidewalk or park, are governed by different rules than injuries that occur on private property. In general, the government is not liable for accidents on public property unless the injured person can prove that the government was negligent in maintaining the property.
5. There is a limited time to file a premises liability lawsuit.
If you are injured in an accident on someone else’s property, you generally have two years from the accident date to file a premises liability lawsuit. This deadline is known as the statute of limitations. You will be barred from recovery if you do not file your lawsuit within this time period.
6. Premises liability lawsuits can be complex and expensive.
Premises liability lawsuits can be complex and expensive, especially if the accident resulted in serious injuries. Suppose you are thinking about filing a premises liability lawsuit. In that case, you should consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can evaluate your case and help you decide whether to proceed.
7. You may be able to settle your premises liability case without going to trial.
Many premises liability cases settle before they go to trial. If you are involved in a premises liability lawsuit, your lawyer will likely try to negotiate a settlement with the property owner or their insurance company. The case will go to trial if a settlement cannot be reached.
If you are injured in an accident on someone else’s property, you may be able to recover damages by filing a premises liability lawsuit. However, these lawsuits can be complex and expensive. Additionally, there is a limited time to file a premises liability lawsuit. Thus, it is important to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately after the accident.