Our slip and fall lawyers have considerable experience in helping individuals who have been hurt while on another person’s or business’ property. This area of the law is known as premises liability and it can involve intricate issues that should be analyzed by a skilled professional.
If you have had an accident on someone else’s property, our personal injury attorneys can assist you in filing a claim for compensation.
Proving Negligence in Premises Liability Cases
There are several considerations that may arise in a premises liability case. Like any other lawsuit involving a claim of negligence, it requires that a plaintiff prove that the defendant owed him or her a duty of care. It also is necessary to show that there has been a breach of the duty that caused injury and damages.
Types of Plaintiffs
A key factor in a premises liability case is how a plaintiff is classified with respect to the property upon which he or she was hurt. Any person who enters a particular area may be categorized as trespasser, licensee, or invitee.
- Trespasser – A trespasser is someone who has entered the premises without an invitation or any other right to be there. In this situation, the duty owed to the individual is simply to avoid inflicting any willful or reckless injury.
- Licensee – Another type of guest is called a licensee, which is defined as an individual who enters the premises for a social purpose. In these cases, a property owner must avoid reckless or willful acts that could injure the licensee. The property owner also cannot intentionally expose the licensee to danger and must warn of any known dangerous conditions that would not be visible through ordinary observation.
- Invitee – An invitee is someone who has been invited to enter or remain on a particular property for a public or business use, such as a store customer or a restaurant patron. In these cases, the owner of the premises owes the highest duty of care. In addition to taking the same precautions as for a licensee, it must eliminate or warn of any dangers that the owner knew or should have known.
Proving a Slip and Fall Case
Premises liability cases often involve an accident that has occurred on property belonging to a business. A plaintiff in this type of case is generally considered an invitee. For example, a grocery store owes a duty to its customers to maintain its floors in a reasonably safe condition, even when it is common for slippery substances to spill.
In order to prevail in a slip and fall case, it is necessary to show that the business had either actual or constructive knowledge that a foreign substance was present. This would lead to an inference that it should have done something to fix the situation.
One distinctive premises liability issue is the occurrence of third-party criminal acts on commercial property, for which owners are sometimes liable. The Florida legislature has enacted laws that limit accountability for certain types of businesses with regard to crimes committed by others on their property, provided that they have taken specific security measures. Most Florida courts, however, determine whether a crime committed by a third party was foreseeable in order to determine a property owner’s liability for it.
Our Legal Team
If you have been injured on property belonging to another person or business, you may have a claim. The personal injury attorneys at Lusk, Drasites, & Tolisano understand this complex area of the law.
We can help with claims related to:
Our legal team is dedicated to representing injured individuals near Cape Coral, Fort Myers, and Naples. To speak with one of our Florida injury lawyers, call us toll free at (800) 283-7442.