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Los Angeles Premises Liability FAQ

What is Premises Liability?

Los Angeles premises liability typically refers to accidents that occur in and around Los Angeles due to negligent maintenance by the owners of private or commercial properties, or accidents that occur due to the negligent maintenance or unsafe conditions on property owned by someone other than the accident victim.

What is Premises Liability Law?

The legal terminology of "premises liability" holds owners and occupiers of property liable (legally responsible) for accidents and injuries that occur on that property. Premises liability law is the body of law which makes the person who is in possession of land or premises responsible for certain injuries suffered by anyone present on the premises, other than the owners.

Many states have laws that generally require landowners, including business owners and homeowners, to maintain their property and provide a safe environment for individuals on their premises.

California premises liability law requires that property owners must ensure the safety of children, regardless of whether they are "legally" supposed to be there or not.

Federal or state government entities might be legally responsible if you have been injured in a public park or on government property.

When is a property owner liable for an accident?

When property owners fail to keep their premises free of dangerous conditions, or fail to warn other people of existing hazardous conditions, they may be considered liable for any accidents that occur while other people—a guest, visitor, shopper or tenant living on another person's property--are on their property.  

If an accident or injury occurs to you due to dangerous or hazardous conditions, the property owner may be held liable if you can prove that negligence led to your injury.

What are some examples of premises liability dangerous conditions and locations?

Dangerous conditions may include poor maintenance of buildings (interior and exterior) or their surrounding areas or unsafe design or construction.

Los Angeles premises liability accidents can occur on any public, private, or commercial property, including:
  • Bars and restaurants
  • Hotels and Motels
  • Public Sidewalks & Walkways
  • Parking Lots / Ramps
  • Shopping Malls
  • Stores & Supermarkets
  • Stadiums, theaters
  • Warehouse Stores
Negligent security can be an issue in Los Angeles. It can include injuries caused by overzealous night club bouncers to an assault by another bar customer. Rape, robbery or physical assault can occur in a hotel, apartment building, or parking lot due to lack of guards, cameras or other security measures in a high-crime area.

What are some common premises liability claims?

The most common accidents are 'slip and fall' or 'slip and trip'. They can occur due to unsafe and inconsistent surfaces such as slippery floors, potholes, cracked concrete and loose gravel, icy entranceways, etc. More often than not, victims blame themselves for these kinds of accidents—by being 'careless'-- but an experienced Los Angeles premises liability lawyer can show that many of these injuries can be traced back to owner negligence and therefore liability.

Slip and fall accidents, which can result in very serious injuries, are often due to a defective condition, foreign substance or object that causes a fall, such as a wet floor, broken steps, stairways, pavement or asphalt.

An owner may be responsible for malfunctioning elevators, or inadequate lighting on stairs. Dog bites are also on the rise (more people have pets) and construction accidents are also frequent. Other incidents that give rise to California premises liability claims are exposure to toxic substance or mold, failure to supervise, assault & battery, and many more. 

Premises liability claims may also be filed for injuries resulting from equipment used on the property.

An accident occurred in my house. Will my insurance cover a premises liability claim?

It depends. Typically a homeowner's insurance policy will cover medical bills for accidents that occur in the house. Each policy is different, however, so it's best to check your policy or ask a Los Angeles premises liability lawyer.

How can I determine whether I have a Premises Liability lawsuit?

If you have been injured due to the negligence of a property owner and can successfully prove that you were injured as a result of a property owner’s negligence, you may be able to file a premises liability lawsuit and seek monetary damages.

In other words, before you file a premises liability claim, you must be able to prove that:
  • The property owner/wrongdoer knew the hazardous condition existed,
  • The accident occurred because the property owner/ wrongdoer failed to remove the hazardous condition,
  • The accident occurred because the property owner/ wrongdoer failed to warn you about the hazardous conditions,
  • You sustained an injury and suffered damages due to negligence: the property owner/wrongdoer breached the commonly accepted duty to exercise due care. 
How do I determine who is liable in a premises liability accident?

An experienced Los Angeles premises liability lawyer can help, and may be able to determine that the property owner is not be the only entity liable. Any party whose actions are said to be a proximate cause of your injury can be liable for damages.

How much time do I have to file a premises liability claim for damages?

The statute of limitations, which means the time in which you must file a lawsuit for damages, is two years in California. Regardless, a California premises liability attorney will advise you to file sooner than later, so that you can preserve the evidence to support your claim.

How much is my premises liability case worth?

If you have been injured due to the unsafe premises of another person or business you may have a right to bring a claim. Your damages can cover current and future medical costs, lost wages, lost quality of life, and pain and suffering. Each case is different and the monetary worth of your case will depend on a variety of circumstances and conditions.

How much will a premises liability lawsuit cost me?

Premises liability claims are usually handled on a contingency basis, which means that your attorney will only charge legal fees if you recover compensation for your losses. It is important that you find an experienced premises liability attorney to determine whether your case is viable and that you qualify for compensation.

LawyersandSettlements makes it easy for you to find the right premises liability attorney. We work with attorneys in Los Angeles and southern California who practice in this specialized area, and they have helped thousands of injured persons and families. A California premises liability lawsuit can be settled out of court, which will spare you added stress of a trial. If you have a strong liability lawsuit, however, you may win a larger settlement through court proceedings. Either way, it is important that you find the right attorney.
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Last updated on Feb-24-11

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