Property owners have a duty to ensure the safety of their visitors, and that must be carried out by either repairing and removing hazards, properly indicating hazards that cannot be repaired or removed, and constantly monitoring property for the emergence of any new hazards that could result in an injury. If someone were to be injured by one of these potential hazards, they could be able to hold the property owner or operator liable for their injuries, provided they can prove each of the four “elements” of a premises liability claim was present at the time of the injury.
The Four Elements of Premises Liability
1. The person causing the injury was in control of the property.
This includes anyone who owns the property, was operating it at the time the injury occurred, leased the property, or in some other way was responsible for its condition at the time when the injury occurred. Let’s look at an example: say you went to a local fast food restaurant and slipped on a small puddle of spilled water that was hidden on a smooth, shiny floor. In this instance, the premises owner wasn’t directly in control over the conditions, but the restaurant itself was, and could be held liable for their failure to monitor their dining room and clean the spill.
2. The defendant was negligent in their control of the property.
You must be able to demonstrate that the person in control of the property in some way neglected their duty to ensure the property was safe for visitors and that this neglect led to the rise of the hazard which caused your injury.
3. You sustained an injury.
Just because a hazard that could have caused an injury was present doesn’t mean you can hold the property owner responsible. You must have sustained an injury as a direct result of that hazard in order to have a legitimate premises liability claim. Injuries sustained on the property but not as a result of any premises liability hazards are not the premises owner’s responsibility.
4. The owner’s negligence directly caused your injury.
In other words, you must be able to show that the negligence the property owner or operator showed was a direct contributor to your injury. It’s not enough to show that the hazard itself caused your injury; you must also be able to demonstrate that the property owner failed in their duty to care for any hazards that emerged and that failure led to the creation of the hazard that ultimately caused your injury.It’s strongly advised you have a skilled Nassau County personal injury lawyer on your side to help you with your case. For high-quality, experienced representation, call Foley Griffin, LLP today at (888) 966-8480 and request a case evaluation!