Invited guests to both businesses and homes are made to feel welcome. Unfortunately, visitors all to often have a misplaced assumption they will be safe while on that premises. Visitors are commonly hurt by accidents on another’s problem caused by unsafe conditions – accidents that can result in catastrophic, life changing injuries. If an owner or manager has failed to protect visitors from dangerous conditions on their property, they can be liable if someone is hurt while present. If you were injured while on another’s property, you should speak to the an experienced Lake Elsinore Premises Liability lawyer to learn if you may be entitled to compensation for your damages.
Premises Liability in Lake Elsinore
Lake Elsinore is a growing city of over 66,000 that has a bustling tourism industry thanks to the picturesque lake. The expanding number of residents means housing, retail destinations, new parks, and visitor destinations are appearing almost daily – all places commonly associated with premises liability claims. Lake Elsinore also has events such as the Elsinore Grand Prix and games for the Lake Elsinore Storm Single A baseball team attract even more people to the area. Any such property could be the site of an accident resulting in owner or manager liability, and the potential for such claims will do nothing but increase in the future.
What Duty Does a Lake Elsinore Owner or Manager Have to Guests?
In Lake Elsinore, a property owner, caretaker, or manager has a legal duty to take reasonable care to protect visitors by keeping their property free of unsafe or hazardous conditions. There is also a legal duty to protect visitors by taking reasonable care regarding existing dangers to adequately warn, as well as take reasonable care to discover hazardous or unsafe conditions by inspecting the property and either warning of these conditions or abating them. However, owners, managers, and caretakers have no legal duty warn guests about any condition so obvious any reasonable person would both recognize it and take steps to avoid the hazard.
If a victim can show the controller of the property should have discovered the hazard be exercising reasonable care by inspecting it before the injury occurred, the controller is deemed to have constructive notice of the unsafe condition for premises liability claims.
What are Hazardous Conditions for Purposes of Premises Liability?
Unsafe and hazardous conditions are construed broadly as they relate to premises liability claims in California. Innumerable conditions on a property can injure guests and lead to liability, but common injury-causing conditions include:
- Broken or missing handrails and steps;
- Broken glass;
- Insufficient security around a pool;
- Poor, malfunctioning, or nonexistent lighting;
- Liquids on the floor;
- Malfunctioning or nonexistent fire safety systems such as sprinklers;
- Negligent security personnel hiring; and
- Failing to warn visitors about known hazardous conditions.
Some hazards are obvious, but others could be overlooked by an inexperienced party. If you were hurt as a visitor on a property, you should talk with a skilled Lake Elsinore Premises Liability attorney to see if your injuries may give rise to a premises liability claim.
Injuries Causing Premises Liability Claims
Though commercial and residential properties are where most premises liability claims arise, they may also come from injuries on government and public property. The circumstances which can cause premises liability claims are endless, but some accidents are more common causes:
- Slips or trips and falls;
- Drownings and diving injuries at pools;
- Harms as victims of crime on the property;
- Injuries from falling objects; and
- Dog bites.
Elevators and escalators are an additional source of risk commonly found in commercial buildings and apartment complexes. Common causes of injury on these structures includes:
- Faulty elevator doors;
- Sudden elevator drops; and
- Injuries due to clothes or shoes caught in moving parts.
Property owners may also be liable for consequential injuries resulting from lack of or insufficient security on their property. Their legal duty includes exercising reasonable care to protect visitors from crime risks that are known. If a restaurant owner is aware there have been multiple muggings in their unlit parking lot yet fail to install lights, post signs warning guests, or take other reasonable care to remove the risk of crime to their patrons, they may incur liability if a diner is injured during a later mugging in their parking lot.
What Is My Case Worth?
It’s common to wonder what you may recover for your injuries in a premises liability claim. After you demonstrate the party controlling the property was negligent and breached their duty of care to you as a visitor, you may be able to receive damages.
Compensatory damages meant to make victims whole for provable damages. They are awarded for two different types of harms: economic and noneconomic. Economic compensatory damages are redress for concrete harms including:
- Burial costs;
- Damage to property;
- Hospital bills and medical expenses; and
- Lost earning capacity.
On the other hand, noneconomic compensatory damages, are for physical, psychological, and emotional harms such as:
- Mental anguish;
- Pain and suffering; and
- Loss of consortium.
In certain circumstances, a victim may also be entitled to punitive damages as an additional form or relief. These damages are meant to punish a party’s reprehensible conduct as well as deter others from behaving the same way. Punitive damages require satisfying a higher burden of proof than compensatory damages, and whether they are issued and in what amount are at a judge or jury’s discretion. Due to the differing standards of proof, the discretionary nature of many damages, and the difficulty of establishing negligence to qualify for damages, you should look to an experienced Lake Elsinore Premises Liability lawyer who can avoid legal pitfalls in your case.
Speak to a Premises Liability Attorney
If you were injured as a guest on someone else’s property, you should speak to the experienced Premises Liability lawyers at Walton Law serving Lake Elsinore and the surrounding community. Our attorneys have spent years delivering personalized representation for victims just like yourself and obtained millions for our clients. Contact us at (866)-338-7079 or use our online Contact Page to set up a no-risk, no obligation case review today. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help you. The initial consultation is free, and you pay nothing until we win your case. Let our attorneys evaluate the unique facts of your case and start helping you on the road to recovery today.