“Torts” is the area of the law that addresses injuries to your person or your property. For example, if you are injured while on the property of another party you may have the basis for a lawsuit based on the legal concept known as “premises liability’ which is a specific type of tort. You have probably heard of “slip and fall” accident, which falls under the purview of premises liability; however, does premises liability cover only slip and fall accidents? The answer to that question is “no.”
The underlying concept in a premises liability lawsuit is simple. If you are injured as a result of a dangerous or unsafe condition, or because of a defect, while on someone else’s property you may have a valid premises liability claim. Although slip and fall accidents are a very common type of premises liability lawsuit, they are far from the only type. Some other common types of premises liability lawsuit include, but are not limited to, injuries incurred while on the property of another and that are caused by:
- Inadequate lighting
- Insufficient security leading to violent assault
- Defective workmanship
- Failure to maintain or repair the premises
- Defective elevators or escalators
- Failure to properly secure or guard a swimming pool
- Failure to restrain a dog or other animal
- Toxic fumes or chemicals
- Water leaks or flooding
- Failure to repair or maintain amusement park rides
- Failure to remove ice or snow on sidewalks or walkways
What all of these examples have in common is that a victim was injured because the owner of the property breached the duty of care owed to the victim in some way, leading to an injury. The extent of the duty of care an owner owes to a visitor on the property depends on what category the visitor falls into – invitee, licensee, or trespasser. The highest duty is owed to an invitee and the lowest to a trespasser. An invitee is legally present on the property and is typically someone from whom the owner of the property expects to realize a financial or material gain. A shopper in a retail store, diner in a restaurant, or guest at a hotel are all examples of an invitee because the property owner stands to gain from the individual’s presence on the property. A licensee is also legally present on the property but not because the owner expects to gain something from the individual. A friend visiting the property, a plumber fixing a leaky faucet, or the meter reader checking the water meter are all examples of licensees. Finally, a trespasser is not legally present on the property.
If you have additional questions or concerns about a potential premises liability accident, contact the Louisiana premises liability accident attorneys at Broussard & Hart, LLC by calling 337-439-2450 to schedule your appointment today.