Personal Injury

Personal Injury

Posted by Safe In4 Hub

PREMISE LIABILITY



As the name implies, this type of injury occurs on a premises. It can cover a wide variety of circumstances such as: slip and falls due to improper maintenance or faulty construction, dog bites, assaults which take place on property, etc. The key element to a claim here is notice of the defect or circumstance to the owner or operator before the injury occurs. The notice of the defect can be direct( actual) or constructive(implied) in form. In fact the majority of cases present themselves not with actual notice to the owner, as it is rare to have direct evidence that the owner was given actual notice of the specific defect or circumstance. Most claims are put forth based on constructive notice. Constructive notice is a situation where the owner knew or should have known of the defect given all of the surrounding facts and circumstances. For instance, a property owner of a store or business maintains the store entrance for use by patrons, a snow or ice storm occurs and the owner fails to check the entrance for accumulation of ice and snow for several days. Although no one directly informed him of the condition, he, being aware of the snow or ice storm, should have checked or inspected the entrance for the ice or snow. The snow or ice storm itself provided constructive notice to the owner of a potential dangerous condition which he should have remedied. Thus the law places upon him the duty to inspect for a dangerous condition when given constructive notice of the condition. This principle can apply many situations from someone who slips in a store on a wet floor to someone who is beaten and robbed in a parking garage. If there exists facts or circumstances which will indicate that the owner knew or should have known of the dangerous conditions existing, then the requirement of constructive is generally satisfied.

The second key element in these situations is control of the property where the injury occurred. Sometimes the owner is not the party in control of the premises. The law holds the party in control of the property responsible for the care, maintenance and inspection of same. Thus if the owner has leased the property to a party who has control of the premises it is that party who is responsible and not the owner. The key here is who had control of the premises.

Since most premise liability cases occur without witnesses or police investigation, it is extremely important that the injured party seek legal advice immediately and begin to gather the evidence necessary to prove the claim. The Attorney must investigate and find the elements of notice and control as quickly as possible. The owner or insurance company will almost always deny responsibility in these cases and offer a variety of excuses for non payment of claims. The initial response is almost always it was not our fault or responsibility. Unfortunately, most people who suffer these types of injuries wait to consult an attorney and do so only after their injuries manifest themselves as more serious after several days or weeks; by then of course, the evidence may be lost and the case becomes very difficult to prove. The best course is to consult the attorney as quickly as possible, let him or her do their job and then if your injuries are or become minor, withdraw the claim. This is the best course and only true method to protect yourself in the event that your injury later becomes more serious in nature. Remember, the insurance companies will not operate on sympathy or speculation; they will require that you prove your case and without the proper investigation your claim will be denied. These as well as all other types of injuries are subject to time limits in which you must bring or file your claim in court. These laws are called statutes of limitations and different time limits apply to different types of claims or injuries and each in turn are subject to individual state laws. In Connecticut you have only two years to file a court action for a premise liability case or be forever barred from doing so. Other states have one or three years as limits; consult with your local attorney for the appropriate time limits or contact this office for an appropriate referral.

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