Under local, state and federal laws, property owners have an obligation to keep their buildings and land safe for authorized visitors and businesses. When a property owner fails in their “duty of care” to provide a reasonable expectation of responsibility, innocent people can suffer personal injuries. If you or a loved one were injured due to another’s negligence, the best course of action for recovering what may be owed to you is to contact one of the skilled personal injury lawyers at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt.
What is Premises Liability?
In personal injury law, premises liability cases deal with incidents caused by an unsafe or defective condition on someone’s property.
Premises liability cases depend on two factors — the negligence of the owner and/or renter of the space where the injury occurred, and a lack of fault in the plaintiff. Proprietors, landlords and homeowners have a duty to keep their property free from serious hazards. If they fail to do so and someone gets hurt while exercising reasonable diligence, the site operator may be held responsible.
The Premises Liability Cases We Handle
With over $200 million recovered for personal injury clients in McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt’s 30 years handling premises liability claims, our law firm has seen every type of situation that can come up. We handle premises liability claims involving the following:
- Amusement park and recreational accidents: Companies that do business by selling thrills sometimes neglect safety in the process — the law protects expectations of safety.
- Collapses: When a seemingly sound structure collapses during normal use, this may be considered premises liability.
- Dog bites: About 4.7 million people are the victims of dog bites each year, most of them children.
- Drowning incidents: Drowning ranks as the third-leading cause of unintentional injury death and accounts for 7 percent of all injury-related deaths.
- Elevator accidents: Elevator accidents injure over 10,000 people per year.
- Escalator accidents: Poor maintenance of this heavy machinery can be catastrophic.
- Falling object accidents: This type of premises liability is the number two cause of construction workplace deaths.
- Inadequate security accidents: Property owners have an obligation to keep their property safe, through reasonable preventative measures.
- Revolving door accidents: Properly-functioning revolving doors should have detectors that will prevent them from turning if something or someone is in the way.
- Roadway safety and defective safety controls: Roadway maintenance is a lawful expectation for the 4,000 pound vehicles meant to drive upon them.
- Slip and fall accidents: These injuries are both a top workplace danger and a scourge of older adults, responsible for 3 million emergency room visits per year.
- Tourism and travel: When you are in an unfamiliar setting, you must rely on the diligence of those who host you.
What Causes Premises Liability Cases?
A property owner is held to two expectations within their “duty of care” — first, they must undertake reasonable measures to ensure their property is safe, and second, they should foresee any harm that may occur from the conditions on their property.
Premises liability cases are often caused by:
- Snow, ice or water left on walkways
- Defective electrical wiring
- Poor construction using cheap materials
- Building code violations
- Slippery floors
- Lack of maintenance
- Lack of signage
- Messy and poorly-lit areas
- Uneven, broken sidewalks
- Design flaws on the property
- A hidden defect on a walking surface, like a broken stair
What Damages are Recoverable in a Premises Liability Case?
The value of a premises liability claim depends on the extent of the injuries suffered, provided that the plaintiff has done everything in their power to mitigate their injuries. The losses aimed for in a settlement will cover both accident-related expenses and non-economic losses, including:
- Current and future medical bills
- Current and future lost wages from missed work
- Physical therapy
- Pain and suffering
- Wrongful death (in the event of losing a loved one)
When to Consult with an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Many people make the mistake of thinking that they can properly handle an injury claim on their own. This is a mindset that insurance companies bet on — they can afford to take their time in paying out your claim without their own lawyers on the clock.
At McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt, we take a vested interest in your case. You never pay a dime unless we win. In many cases, we can also advance the expenses necessary to work with experts. We like to view ourselves as partners in your case, and in the challenge of maximizing your claim.
With 30 years of experience litigating personal injury cases, McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt welcomes clients from New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania communities near and far. To schedule a meeting for a free consultation, fill out our form or call us directly at 1-800-590-4116.