When you are injured while on another person’s property, you could be entitled to financial compensation. If a property owner violates their duty of care to their guests, financial liability may attach to that plaintiff. The amount of compensation obtainable will depend on the nature of the injuries and the cause of the accident. Complex legal rules apply to determine what level of obligation a property has toward a particular visitor to their property.
An experienced Perth Amboy premises liability lawyer can handle these complex cases and help a plaintiff seek financial compensation. Discuss your options with a seasoned personal injury attorney.
Property owners have a general obligations to protect others from harm while on their property. The specific level of protection differs depending on the legal statute of the visitor. Some injuries a plaintiff sustains while on another’s property are compensable by money damages through a premises liability lawsuit.
Injuries can occur in many types of locations that can be public or private. Common locations where injuries occur for premises liability cases include:
These locations and many more may have a duty to protect the plaintiff that they fail to follow. This failure could result in financial liability for the defendant, and money damages for a successful plaintiff.
New Jersey Statutes Annotated § 2A:14-2 requires most cases to be filed within two years of the date the accident occurred. Certain exceptions may “toll” this limitations period, but they are very fact specific. Consultation with an attorney is a must soon after the accident to avoid statute of limitations problems.
Owners of property owe different duties of care to different people. This is based on their legal status at the time they come on the property.
This legal status is given to those visitors who come to a business to shop or secure services. This could include grocery stores, big box stores, banks, or other places that make money because a person came into their store. This is the highest standard of care, and it requires the place be kept safe, reasonable inspections be conducted, and adequate warnings placed.
Licensees are permitted on the property, but it is usually for a specific purpose, such as a mail carrier or a package delivery person. A property owner is required to make the property safe from known hazards but is not required to specifically inspect it for the licensee’s safety. They might be liable for an injury that occurred due to a loose brick in the ground because they have an obligation to check for that.
Regarding social guests, a property owner is not required to inspect the premises for potentially dangerous conditions, and is liable only for latent defects, i.e., those that the social guest would not likely be able to observe, and of which the owner/lessee/occupant was aware. Thus, if an icy driveway was observable by the social guest, and the guest falls on the ice, the owner/lessee/occupant would not be liable.
Trespassers are owed very little in terms of the duty of care. The property owner is only required to abstain from intentionally hurting a trespasser. There is no obligation to warn of potential dangers, even if known, with rare exception.
Although a premises owner’s potential liability is still generally measured by these categories, New Jersey law has evolved to a “reasonable care under all of the circumstances” standard. Whether or not the premises owner has satisfied their obligation to one who enters the premises is highly fact-specific and requires an experienced lawyer to determine the appropriate standard to apply.
Compensation in this type of case can include:
Damages can range in amount and type depending on the specific facts of the case. A Perth Amboy premises liability attorney could calculate the damages and help determine the full value of a case.
Premises liability cases are often difficult to prove without an understanding of the legal obligations of the property owner and the rights of the plaintiff. Insurance companies may also try to contact you after the accident before you even have time to reach legal counsel. A qualified attorney knows the law and can put it to use for you. An experienced Perth Amboy premises liability lawyer will help you fight for compensation. Schedule a consultation today.