Property owners must take steps to ensure the safety of anyone who has a right to be on their premises. Unfortunately, individuals do sustain injuries caused by the negligent actions of property owners. At GOLDLAW, we are here to help if you need a West Palm Beach premises liability attorney by your side. We have the resources needed to handle every aspect of your claim, and we want to help you secure compensation for your losses.
West Palm Beach Premises Liability Resources
- What is Premises Liability?
- Most Common Types of Premises Liability Claims
- How Can You Prove Premises Liability?
- What Compensation is Available?
GOLDLAW Can Help With Your Premises Liability Claim
We understand the pain and anguish that brought you to our website, so let us help. Don’t wait to seek legal assistance–the sooner you contact a lawyer, the better. If you choose the personal injury lawyers at GOLDLAW, you will be in good hands; you’ve come to the right place.
- The attorneys at GOLDLAW can help with any type of premises liability claim and will do whatever it takes to get you what you deserve.
- We value your time, respond to your needs, and diligently pursue every aspect of your case. You will always know where your case stands, and we are always available to answer questions.
- We specialize in personal injury and premises liability claims.
What is Premises Liability?
Premises liability is the area of law that makes a property owner or possessor responsible for injuries that occur on their property due to negligent or poor maintenance.
Common Types of Premises Liability Cases
There are many different types of premises liability claims. A few of the most common include:
Slippery Floors and Spills
One of the most common types of premises liability cases involves slip and fall claims. Whether it’s water, oil, or some other type of liquid, if a business owner fails to clean up a spill promptly, they can be held liable for any injuries. For example, if you were to slip and fall on a wet floor in a grocery store and suffer injuries, the store could be held responsible.
Defective Elevators and Escalators
If you’ve ever been on an elevator or escalator that suddenly malfunctioned, you know how scary it can be. And while most elevator and escalator accidents don’t result in serious injuries, sometimes serious injuries and even fatalities occur. If you’ve been injured in an elevator or escalator accident, the building owner may be liable for your injuries.
If you are attacked by a dog while you are lawfully on private or public property, you may have a premises liability claim against the dog owner.
Swimming Pool Accidents
If you are injured in a swimming pool accident due to negligent maintenance or inadequate safety precautions, such as a lack of lifeguards or barriers around the pool, you may have a premises liability claim against the property owner.
Proving a Premises Liability Claim
One of the first steps in premises liability cases is determining whether the injured person was an invitee, a licensee, or a trespasser. Invitees are those who are expressly or impliedly invited onto your property for business purposes, like customers at a grocery store.
Licensees are those who have been given express or implied permission to be on your property but are there for social reasons. For example, if you have a dinner party, your guests would be considered licensees. Additionally, a contractor or someone doing work on your property is considered a licensee.
Trespassers are people who do not have permission—express or implied—to be on your property.
Landowners have a duty to keep invitees and licensees reasonably safe while they’re on your property, though licensees are owed a lower duty of care. However, they usually don’t have this same duty to trespassers.
To win your premises liability case in West Palm Beach, you must first show that the landowner or possessor owed you a duty of care based on your status as an invitee, licensee, or trespasser. Second, you must show that this duty was breached – in other words, the landowner failed to live up to their obligation of keeping their property safe. Finally, you must show that this breach of duty resulted in your injuries. If you can prove all of these things, then you may be able to recover compensation.
You Must Show That The Owner Knew or Should Have Known (Foreseeability)
For an injury to be compensable under Florida premises liability law, the injured party must show that the defendant (usually the property owner) knew or should have known about the dangerous condition that caused the plaintiff’s injuries. To prove that the defendant knew or should have known about the dangerous condition, the plaintiff must show that the condition was foreseeable.
There are a few ways to show that a dangerous condition was foreseeable. First, if the dangerous condition was created by the defendant, it is presumed to be foreseeable. For example, if a storeowner spills a drink on the floor and does not clean it up, and you slip and fall on the drink, it is presumed that the store owner knew or should have known about the dangerous condition and failed to take reasonable steps to fix it.
Another way to show that a dangerous condition was foreseeable is to show that similar accidents have happened in the past. For example, if there have been several accidents involving people slipping and falling on a particular floor at a particular store, it is more likely that the storeowner knew or should have known about the dangerous condition and failed to take reasonable steps to fix it.
Generally speaking, the more time that passes between when the owner knew or should have known about the hazard and when the injury occurred, the more likely it is that the owner will be held liable. This is because the longer that goes by, the more time the owner has had to take steps to either repair or remove the hazard.
What Compensation Can Be Recovered in a Premises Liability Case in West Palm Beach?
There are a few different types of Compensation that can be recovered in a premises liability claim.
The first type is economic damages. Economic damages are those that have a specific monetary value attached to them. These most often include:
- Medical Bills: you can recover all past and future medical bills related to your injuries. This includes hospitalizations, surgeries, doctor’s appointments, physical therapy, prescriptions, and any other medical treatment related to your injuries.
- Lost Wages: you can recover wages you have lost from being out of work and any future lost wages. If you are unable to return to work or have to take a lower-paying job because of your injuries, you can recover those lost wages as well.
- Property Damage: if any of your personal property was damaged in the fall, you can recover the cost to repair or replace that property.
Another type of compensation you can recover is non-economic damages, which do not have a set monetary value. The most common types of non-economic damages include:
- Pain and Suffering: This is compensation for the physical pain and emotional suffering caused by your injuries.
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life: this compensates you for the ways in which your injuries have affected the pleasures and activities you enjoyed before the accident.
There is no set formula for calculating these damages because they are more subjective. Some factors that may be considered when calculating non-economic damages include:
- The severity of your injuries;
- The effect of your injuries on your daily life;
- Whether your injuries are permanent; and
- The amount of economic damages you have incurred.
In limited circumstances, you may also be awarded punitive damages. These are designed to punish the at-fault party for particularly negligent or reckless behavior and are not available in every case. To recover punitive damages, you must prove by clear and convincing evidence that the at-fault party’s conduct was outrageous and intentional with a conscious disregard for your safety.
Contact a West Palm Beach Premises Liability Attorney Today
If you or someone you love has been injured due to the negligence of a property owner in the West Palm Beach area, turn to the team at GOLDLAW today. We have the resources needed to handle the entirety of your claim, including negotiations with insurance companies and the personal injury trial process. We want to help you secure the compensation you are entitled to. When you need a West Palm Beach premises liability attorney, contact our office to schedule a free consultation today.