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Premises Liability

Premises Liability Cases

Property owners are responsible for maintaining their premises in such a way that potential guests and visitors are not unnecessarily exposed to health and safety threats.

Premises liability laws ensure that property owners who expose others to injury risks can be held accountable for the impact that their negligence may have on the lives of others.

Premises liability claims can arise from a wide range of issues, from minor sprains to head and brain injuries or even wrongful death, but in circumstances in which a property owner was at fault, victims may be able to take legal action against the property owner in question.

Unfortunately, the negligence of property owners and managers all too often result in a wide variety of accidents and injuries including:

  • Slip and Fall
  • Elevator/Escalator Injuries
  • Porch Collapse
  • Stair Collapse
  • Fires
  • Lead Paint Poisoning
  • Mercury Poisoning
  • Swimming Pool Injuries

Frequently Asked Questions About Premises Liability

It’s important to be fully aware of all of your legal options. Review the answers to some basic premises liability questions below or contact us about any specific questions about your case to get the help you need.

What Is a Premises Liability Claim?

Premises liability is a situation in which the person or entity in possession of land, a home or a building is responsible for any injuries or death suffered by individuals present on those premises. In Texas, owners are required to exercise reasonable care and maintain their property to prevent harm to visitors, guests, or customers. An owner or manager should regularly inspect their home, business, or land for potential hazards and should either address and repair the problems, or post warnings of the dangers to others.

A premises liability claim involves an injury on someone’s property. You may have heard of some of these claims referred to as “slip and fall” cases. However, the negligence of property possessors can result in a wide range of injuries. These situations can include persons injured inside department stores, restaurants, grocery stores, banks, hospitals, and other buildings open to the public. These claims can also include injuries that happen outside a building such as a sidewalk, parking lot, common area, stairs, elevator, or on the grounds of the building or property.

Does a Property Owner Have a Responsibility to Me as a Visitor?

In Texas, to accurately assess a premises liability claim, you need to first understand how the injured person came to be injured on the property and what their legal status was at the time of the injury. The law in Texas recognizes three different legal statuses for people who are on someone else’s property, and they go a long way in determining what the owner should have done to protect them from harm. The statuses according to Texas law include:

  • Invitee – This is the most common status for plaintiffs in a premises liability case. Someone who is an invitee is on the owner’s property with consent and at the invitation of the owner. It is important to note that the person must be on the property and using it for its intended purpose or for reasons that are authorized by the owner. The owner has a responsibility to keep the premises safe for any and all invitees. If someone is hurt, the owner must prove that they took reasonable action to keep the premises safe.
  • Licensee – This is a person who has either expressed or implied permission from the owner to enter a property, but is not invited. The owner needs to make sure that licensees are not harmed by willful or negligent actions while using the property. They should make sure that licensees are notified of any potential dangers on the property.
  • Trespasser – If someone is on an owner’s property without invitation, permission, or authority, they are considered to be a trespasser. Texas law states that the owner only has to prevent intentional injury, and is not responsible for damages caused by hazards on the property. The owner cannot intentionally create dangers or “traps” to catch a trespasser.

Each legal status is different and plays a large part in determining the property owner’s duty of care if there is a premises liability claim. It is essential to have an experienced premises liability lawyer examine the facts of your case to determine your status as the injured party.

How Do I Prove My Liability Claim?

While it is critical to decide what the visitor’s legal status was before moving forward with any premises liability claim, it is also essential to prove the following four elements to secure compensation:

  • The owner of the property was aware of hazards or dangerous conditions on their property.
  • The hazards created or posed an unreasonable level of risk to persons visiting the property.
  • The owner did not address or attempt to fix the dangerous conditions on the property, or they failed to warn visitors of the hazards.
  • Persons injured on the property were directly harmed by the negligent or recklessness of the property owner.

If a person is injured due to the negligence of a property owner or property manager, they may be eligible to take legal action to secure compensation for their pain, suffering, lost wages, medical expenses and other damages.

Talk with a Premises Liability Lawyer

If you have been injured as a result of dangerous property conditions, you don’t have to deal with the situation on your own. With the help of a compassionate and experienced attorney from the Chris Mayo Law Firm you might be able to take legal action against the property owner responsible for your suffering. Contact our firm today!


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