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What is a Premises Liability Case?

Premises Liability

Owners or occupants of a premise(s) have a “duty of care” under California premises liability laws. As part of their "duty of care", they must proactively maintain their property in a reasonably safe condition and to warn others about any dangers that may exist. Here are some of the ways property owners should be proactive in maintaining their property: they maintain their property frequently; periodically and thoroughly inspect the property; repair any potentially hazardous conditions; and/or any potentially dangerous conditions should be adequately forewarned.

It is possible to be deemed negligent if the property owner fails to keep it in an adequately safe condition, and they may be liable for injuries that occur on the property. Additionally, a plaintiff may file a personal injury lawsuit against the property owner if they have caused the plaintiff's injuries through negligence.

Among the compensatory damages that can be awarded to a plaintiff in a premises liability lawsuit in California are: medical bills, physical therapy, life care plans, lost wages, lost earning capacity, pain and suffering.

Overall, California premises liability laws are based on the concept of negligence.

Accident on Escalator

Under California Civil Code 1714(a):

“Everyone is responsible, not only for the result of his or her willful acts, but also for an injury occasioned to another by his or her want of ordinary care or skill in the management of his or her property or person…”

It is the plaintiff's burden to prove that the defendant mismanaged the property, and he or she suffers harm as a result. 

In order to prove the negligence of the property owner, the plaintiff must prove the following: ownership, leasing, occupancy, or control of the property by the defendant; the defendant was negligent in the use or maintenance of the property; the plaintiff was harmed; and the defendant’s negligence was the most influential factor in causing the plaintiff’s injuries. 

Property owners have a duty of care to outline the reasonable and feasible proactive measures they could have taken to prevent a mishap. It may be necessary to consider several factors in determining whether the duty of care has been breached legally, including: the location of the property; the likelihood that someone would come onto the property as the plaintiff; the likelihood of an injury occurring; the probable seriousness of such an injury; whether the owner knew of or should have known of the condition; the burden of reducing or avoiding the risk; or the owner’s degree of control over the risk-creating condition.

Private or public properties can be involved in premises liability accidents. There are many common places where premises liability claims occur, including government property, parks, office buildings, shopping centers, parking lots, and apartments. I can represent you if you have been injured on a premises of any type and you want to recover your damages. 

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