Texas Premises Liability Lawyer
Property owners are responsible for maintaining a safe and secure environment for guests who visit their property. When they fail to do so, guests can get seriously hurt.
If you or a loved one suffered a preventable action on someone else’s property, the personal injury attorneys at Hernandez Law Group, P.C. will make sure that you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Contact us today for a free consultation regarding your premises liability case.
What is Premises Liability?
If someone gets hurt on another person’s property, the injured party may be able to bring a premises liability suit against the property owner. In Texas, premises liability falls under the umbrella of negligence. In other words, to win a premises liability case, the injured person must be able to prove that their injuries were caused by the property owner’s negligence. The following are the most common types of premises liability cases.
Negligent security cases involve circumstances in which a property owner neglected to take the proper precautions to keep a tenant or visitor safe. Also known as inadequate security, this negligence often leads to a person becoming a crime victim. Neglecting to provide proper lighting, perform background checks on other tenants, or take other preventative measures can often lead to a person getting assaulted and seriously injured. When this happens, a tenant or visitor may be able to bring a negligent security lawsuit against the property owner.
Slips, Trips, and Falls
Slip, trip, and fall cases are the most common type of premises liability cases. This is because property owners often fail to quickly take care of conditions that can lead to injury. Slips, trips, and falls are often caused by:
- wet and slippery floors;
- broken tiles;
- cracks in sidewalks; or
- negligent security.
Parking Lot Accidents and Assaults
The walk through a parking lot to a store, building, or apartment can be dangerous. When it’s dark, criminals may use the cover of night to sneak up and attack you. And if drivers aren’t paying attention, they may strike you as you cross the roadway. Common causes of parking lot accidents and assaults include:
- Negligent security
- Inattentive drivers
- Cracked, broken, or uneven asphalt
- Lack of crosswalks
Since parking lots are private property, the property owners are responsible for keeping the lots safe. Drivers are also responsible for looking out for pedestrians and making sure that they don’t strike anyone. When they neglect to do so, it can lead to a pedestrian getting injured in the parking lot. These types of accidents may also take place in parking garages.
Amusement Park Accidents
A fun day at the theme park can quickly turn sour when rides are poorly maintained. All it takes is a loose bolt, bent rail, or safety bar that won’t go down for someone to get flung from the ride and seriously injured or even killed. Amusement park owners are responsible for maintaining equipment and making sure employees are properly trained; when they fail to do so, it puts everyone at risk.
Swimming Pool Accidents
Pools and pool areas can be incredibly dangerous – especially for children. Swimming pool premises liability cases may involve circumstances such as:
- Uncovered drains which suck people in, causing them to get seriously injured or even drown
- Broken deck tiles or concrete which cause people to trip and fall into the pool, leading to trauma or the drowning of a child who can’t swim
- A lack of lifeguards which causes there to be no one available to save a person who’s drowning
- Unlit pool area which makes it impossible for someone to see the edge of the pool, so they fall into it
- Ungated pool areas which make it possible for children to wander in and fall into the pool
Invitee vs Licensee
An invitee is a person who is invited onto a property for the mutual benefit of both the property owner and the guest. This may include shoppers in a store or a guest at a hotel.
Invitees are owed the highest duty of care by the property owner. Property owners are responsible for not taking actions that would prevent an injury. They must perform such actions as putting up wet floor signs, fixing broken floor tiles, cordoning off dangerous areas, and doing other things that will prevent injury to their invitees. It’s important to note that if a person does not spend any money on a property, they are likely to be considered a licensee rather than an invitee.
The term “licensee” is a bit misleading. Licensees are almost always social guests – with a few exceptions. Essentially, a licensee is someone who isn’t visiting for the mutual benefit of both themselves and the property owner. A licensee will usually be the only one who benefits from the visit – such as being allowed to attend a party on the property. Exceptions to this include performing volunteer work.
A property owner owes a licensee a much lower duty of care. They are responsible for warning guests of any unsafe conditions on their property that they are aware of; however, they are not required to repair those conditions. For example, a property owner isn’t responsible for a licensee falling through a rotten floorboard if the property owner specifically told the licensee to avoid said floorboard.
Attractive Nuisance Doctrine
In most cases, property owners will not be responsible if a trespasser gets injured on their property. An exception to this rule is known as the attractive nuisance doctrine. This doctrine protects children who wander into an unprotected area and get hurt. The reasoning behind this doctrine is that children aren’t mature enough to recognize where a property line begins or where danger may lie.
The attractive nuisance doctrine covers circumstances such as when
- a child falls into a pool that isn’t gated;
- a child wanders onto an unguarded construction site and hurts themself with a tool;
- a child climbs a ladder beside a house and falls off; or
- a child falls into an unguarded pit.
Contact a North Texas Premises Liability Lawyer Today
If you have been injured on someone else’s property, you deserve compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain, and suffering. Contact the law office of Hernandez Law Group, P.C. today to schedule a consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys. The team at Hernandez Law Group, P.C. is passionate about making sure that you can pay for your medical bills and recoup your lost wages when someone else causes you to suffer. We will fight for you in court to make sure that you receive the justice and compensation you deserve.
Juan Hernandez is board-certified to practice personal injury law in Texas. Only 2% of attorneys have received this Texas board certification. Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with him and his team.