As an experienced litigator trying cases in California courts for over 30 years, attorney Steven Martin of the Law Offices of Steven L. Martin helps people who have been injured in slips and falls and other personal injury accidents occurring on dangerous premises, including public and private property, retail establishments, and more.
Duty to Keep Premises Reasonably Safe
Property owners owe a duty to keep their premises reasonably safe. This is especially true of retail store owners and others who invite the public onto their property in order to benefit the property owner, but this duty applies to private property owners as well. In order to keep one’s premises reasonably safe, it makes sense to maintain your property in good condition, including making periodic inspections and repairs as needed. If repairs cannot be made, an adequate notice should be posted to warn members of the public about the danger.
If a person is injured due to an unsafe condition that the property owner knew about or should have known about, the owner of the premises may be liable for the damages caused, including all medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other costs. A slip and fall can cause serious injury, such as vision loss or cognitive impairment from a concussion or traumatic brain injury, or permanent paralysis such as paraplegia or quadriplegia in the event of a broken neck or spinal cord injury. Serious bone fractures are also a likely consequence of a trip and fall, particularly among the elderly population.
Dangerous conditions can exist in numerous ways, including:
- Broken handrails
- Unmarked steps
- Bumps in carpet
- Food or liquid spill in restaurant or grocery store aisle
- Exposed electrical wiring
- Broken or uneven sidewalks
- Objects falling from shelves
Complicated Cases Require Experience and Expertise
Sometimes temporary unsafe conditions are created, such as food spills in restaurants or grocery stores, which can be easily remedied by a store employee. This type of case often turns on the question of how long the dangerous condition existed before the accident occurred, and whether the property owner had enough time to know about the condition and to secure the area or clean up the spill. A thorough investigation must be made in these cases, and expert testimony is often required as to the standards and practices of routine inspections in the particular industry. These cases are often more complicated than one might think. An attorney who is experienced in premises liability cases understands how to prepare a successful case, which is often defended by large corporations and their insurance company lawyers.
A lawsuit can do more than obtain financial compensation for a negligence victim. It can also force a change in policy and practice and make premises safer, so that accidents like these don’t happen again. If you have been injured from a slip and fall or other accident on another’s dangerous premises, contact the Law Offices of Steven L. Martin for a free consultation.