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Premises Liability

Maybe you slipped and fell on a sheet of ice while entering a store. Or your landlord failed to fix that broken stair after you told him about it dozens of times. Or maybe you were injured in a bar fight. Whatever it may be, when you are injured on someone else’s property, that owner may be responsible for your injuries. And you’re going to need a lawyer to help you with your case.

For 20 years, the Pennsylvania premises liability lawyers at Fellerman & Ciarimboli have been fighting for the injured across the Keystone State. We understand how difficult it is to recover following an accident and we will fight for your rights both inside and outside the courtroom. Whether it’s a slip and fall accident, a dog bite injury, or a swimming pool accident, our personal injury attorneys are ready to get you the compensation you deserve.

WHAT IS PREMISES LIABILITY?

When you are injured on someone else’s property as a result of a hazardous condition, then you may have a case of premises liability. Under this law, the victim needs to prove that the owner was negligent in maintaining the property, causing an accident to occur.

Some of the more common types of premises liability cases include:

  • Slip and Fall Accidents: This is the most common of premises liability claims. If you slip and fall because of a hazardous situation, such as a buildup of ice and snow on a walkway, you will have a claim against the property owner.
  • Animal Attacks: If a dog bites you and causes an injury, you will be able to sue the dog’s owner for your injuries.
  • Negligent Security: If you are attacked in a store’s parking lot where there are no security lights or video surveillance, this may be a case of negligent security.
  • Inadequate Maintenance: If the property is not properly maintained, causing an injury, there may be a case. Such inadequate maintenance includes liquid, debris or ice accumulations.
  • Toxic Fumes/Chemicals: If a property owner uses cleaning supplies causing you to get sick, you may have a premises liability claim.

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The Property Owner's Duty of Care

Premises liability claims all come down to whether the property owner had acted in a negligent matter. The victim will need to show the following:

  • The property owner has a duty of care to the victim
  • There was a failure to fulfill that duty
  • Because of this failure, the victim was harmed
  • The harm resulted in damages

It all comes down to the owner's duty of care -- a legal obligation to adhere to a standard of reasonable care without harming others. For example, you stop at a gas station on a cold, stormy day. You get out of your car and notice the pavement is slick. As you walk toward the cashier, you slip on a spot of black ice and fall, injuring your leg. The gas station owner may be held liable for your injuries because it is their responsibility to make sure the area is safe for customers.

However, the amount of duty of care all depends on what type of visitor the victim was.

Trespasser: If the victim had entered or remained on the property without consent from the owner, typically the owner has no duty of care. Yet, the owner cannot intentionally inflict injury on the trespasser.

Licensee: If the victim entered the property for his/her own purposes without benefit of the landowner, there is a higher level of care. For example, a neighbor coming to visit you after a snowstorm. The property owner has a duty to warn the neighbor of the dangerous conditions of the property.

Invitee: This type of victim is owed the highest level of care. The invitee has come to the property to benefit the property owner, such as a business owner, or it is public property.

It is important to know that the property owner may not be the only individual held responsible for acquired injuries. Other liable parties include a tenant, work crew, a landlord, security guard or other company responsible for maintaining the property. It also can include people who commit intentional criminal actions which caused your injuries on the property as well.

How Our Pennsylvania Premises Liability Lawyers Can Help

Premises liability can be quite complex. It's important to have a lawyer who understands the nuances of the law, such as those at Fellerman & Ciarimboli. Once you hire our injury attorneys, we will get to work right away. We'll get witness testimony, examine the accident scene, speak with experts, and complete the paperwork with the insurance company. We'll make sure you get the compensation you deserve so you can get back on your feet quickly.

You may be able to recover damages for medical expenses including doctor visits, treatments, surgery, prescription drug costs, therapy, and medical equipment. In some cases, you may be able to also recover lost wages and damages for pain and suffering.

If you or someone you love has suffered an injury because of a property owner's negligence and you would like to learn more about your options, now is the time to act. Contact the Pennsylvania premises liability lawyers at Fellerman & Ciarimboli now for a free consultation.

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