Justine Vogt is quoted as saying “Hospitality: making your guests feel like they’re at home, even if you wish they were.” The underlying goals of hospitality mean visitors should feel welcome, be attended to, and kept safe when they receive an invitation to visit someone else’s property. Unfortunately, owners, manager, and property caretakers ignore the principle of keeping guests safe too often. Though it may not be common knowledge, visitors are frequently injured because of dangerous condition on a host’s property – these injuries can be severe, permanent, or even fatal. If you were harmed by dangerous conditions as a guest on someone else’s property, contact a skilled Hemet Premises Liability Attorney today to learn if you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries.
Do Premises Liability Injury Risks Exist in Hemet?
Hemet is a city of over 84,000 in Riverside County. Even beyond daily life for residents working in the community, Hemet is a bustling locale for outdoor activity and culture that attracts locals and tourists alike. Simpson Park, Pachea Trail, Diamond Valley Lake, The Hemet Museum, and the historic Ramona Bowl Amphitheatre all attract large numbers of individuals, and the community has a sizeable number of restaurants, shops, and other businesses to accommodate residents and visitors alike. Any of these cultural attractions, workplaces, retail establishments, government parks, restaurants, or even private residences of Hemet locals could potentially house an unsafe condition or hazard that might injure a guest and results in a premises liability claim.
What Responsibility Does a Hemet Property Owner or Manager Have to Guests?
In Hemet, all owners, managers, and caretakers of property are legally obligated to safeguard visitors and guests through an exercise of reasonable care to maintain a property that is free from unsafe or hazardous conditions.
There is a further legal duty that these classes of people exercise reasonable care to uncover such conditions through property inspection and either warn visitors of the condition or hazard or else remove the danger. If, however, the unsafe condition or hazard is so blatantly obvious that a reasonable person would spot it, recognize the danger, and take steps to avoid it, then the legal duty to warn for owners, managers, and caretakers no longer exists.
If a guest is injured and can prove that had the property owner, manager, or caretaker exercised reasonable care and inspected the property they would have discovered the hazard, then the responsible party will be held to have had constructive notice of the condition in a premises liability claim.
What are Unsafe and Hazardous Conditions?
Unsafe and hazardous conditions are defined very broadly In California when it comes to claims of premises liability injury. Issues on property that commonly fall under the definition of unsafe or hazardous include:
- Liquids present on a floor;
- Broken or missing steps;
- Broken glass;
- Missing and broken handrails;
- Elevators with out of date inspection certificates;
- Fire safety measures such as sprinklers and extinguishers that are broken or do not exist; and
- Poor or nonexistent lighting.
Some hazardous or unsafe conditions on a property are easily spotted by a reasonable person, but not all of them. You may not have recognized the condition that caused your accident as obviously unsafe. This is why it’s important to speak to a Hemet Premises Liability Lawyer if you were hurt as a guest to learn if the condition that caused your injury could entitle you to compensation.
What Situations Create Premises Liability Claims?
No property is immune to premises liability claims – situations can arise on residential, public, government, and commercial properties that create liability and the opportunity for recovery. Even though all sorts of improbably situations can create premises liability claims, some accidents happen more frequently. These incidents include:
- Elevator door malfunctions and sudden drops;
- Slip and falls;
- Falling objects;
- Escalator issues including clothes caught in moving parts and sudden starts and stops;
- Cuts; and
- Slip or trip and falls.
People responsible for property may also be liable for guest injuries due to nonexistent or inadequate security there. The legal duty of owners, managers, and caretakers includes alerting visitors to known hazards or dangerous conditions as well as using reasonable care safeguard their guests. For example, a shopping center owner who is aware of multiple muggings and assaults of shoppers in their parking lot that fail to post warning signs, install cameras, or add security patrols may be liable for a shopper subsequently injured there.
What Is My Premises Liability Case Worth?
If a victim can establish a defendant’s negligence, the defendant is liable for any damages they can prove to a judge or jury. Victims are awarded compensatory damages to redress injuries they suffered at the hands of another. Compensatory damages may be for economic or noneconomic harms.
Economic damages are awarded to compensate for concrete, verifiable injuries that are proven by records and documents like medical bills or receipts. Economic damages are often awarded for harms such as medical expenses, funeral or burial costs, property damage, lost wages, and lost earning potential. Noneconomic damages are designed to redress more abstract injuries that often stem from mental and emotional trauma brought about by the accident and resulting harms. These damages are often awarded for emotional distress, mental anguish, pain and suffering, and loss of consortium among other injuries.
In some circumstances, additional damages may be warranted to punish a defendant’s vile or reprehensible behavior. These damages, known as punitive damages, require the victim satisfy a much higher burden of proof than the proof required for negligence and the resulting compensatory damages, which simply mandate a victim prove merely require a victim prove the it is “more likely than not” the defendant acted negligently. These damages are completely discretionary both in whether they are awarded and in what amount.
There are differing standards of proof for different awards of damage to issue, as well as the complex and potential difficult issues of establishing causation for a finding of negligence. Because of these difficulties, as well as the potentially negative legal consequences of presenting these arguments incorrectly, it’s advisable to consult a skilled Hemet Premises Liability Lawyer for help in strategizing and presenting your court case.
Contact a Hemet Premises Liability Attorney
If you were hurt while visiting someone else’s property, contact the Hemet Premises Liability Attorneys at Walton Law today. Our attorneys have spent years providing personalized, aggressive representation for victims like you and recovering millions of dollars for our clients. Call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at (866)-338-7079 or complete our online Contact Page to schedule your risk free initial evaluation today. The consultation is free, there is no obligation, and you pay nothing until we win your case. Let our skilled attorneys review the unique facts of your case, answer your questions, and fight to get the maximum possible recovery for you starting today.