Property Owner Negligence
When someone buys property, they take on a lot of responsibility — and not just to pay the mortgage. Property owners also have a responsibility to ensure their properties are safe for visitors, customers and others who visit the property. When a property owner is negligent in this duty, they may be found liable if someone is injured.
I’ve Been Injured on Someone’s Property – Do I Have a Premises Liability Claim?
Property owner negligence cases usually stem from situations where someone is injured because a property owner failed to take reasonable steps to keep a property safe. These types of claims can happen in these examples:
- A diner is hit by a falling piece of tile while eating at a restaurant.
- A hotel guest slips and falls on a wet floor.
- A child is injured after climbing into a pool.
- A customer is beaten during a violent robbery in a poorly-lit parking lot.
- A child is bitten by a dog when visiting a family friend’s home.
Very often, premises liability claims happen on business property. This is because business owners have the highest duty of care in the eyes of the law to their customers. If you walk into a mall or store, in other words, the store owner should have taken due care to ensure you have a safe shopping experience.
If a store owner or other business owner knows there is a danger to customers, they are expected to take steps to address the danger. For example, if a retail store manager knows about a series of violent muggings in an area but fails to fix poor lighting in their parking lot, they may find themselves fighting a legal claim if someone is injured on their premises.
Homeowners have duties of care, too, however. For example, if you are a utility worker or postal employee and are injured because a property owner had a poorly maintained yard you needed to enter as part of your work, you may be able to seek compensation.
Homeowners also have a special duty of care to children. For instance, if they have areas of their home that may be attractive to children (such as a pool, for example) they are expected to take extra care to ensure children can’t easily access that area and get injured.
Most premises liability cases occur when someone who is lawfully supposed to be on a property is injured by negligence, but even trespassers are protected by the law. If someone trespassing on the property is injured, the owner may be sued. However, unlawful users of property are owed the lowest duty of care.
What a Property Owner Negligence Attorney Can Do
If you have been injured, a property owner negligence lawyer can listen to what has happened and can discuss your situation with you. The attorney can explain whether you have a claim and what options may exist for getting insurance benefits or a settlement. If you have any questions, a negligence lawyer can talk about them and offer answers. If you decide to pursue a claim, an attorney can take care of the details and can negotiate for you — or even take your case to court if that’s what you decide to do.
If you’re looking for a property owner negligence attorney in Delaware, contact Rahaim & Saints for a free consultation. From our offices in Newark and Wilmington, we’re proud to serve clients in New Castle County, Kent County, Sussex County and all of Delaware.