Anytime we visit another person’s property, that person has a legal duty to protect us from harm. However, the extent of this duty varies depending on why the visitor is there. In general, a landowner must protect visitors from all hazards that they know or should know about. The most common examples of injuries in these cases result from slips and falls.
People who suffer injuries in these sorts of accidents have the right to recover compensation for not just their physical injuries, but also any lost wages or mental anguish associated with the injury. A Swanton slip and fall lawyer can represent victims in claims to obtain the compensation they deserve. Contact an experienced injury attorney today to begin your claim.
How Do Slip and Falls Happen?
Slip and falls can happen at almost any time. All landowners have a responsibility to maintain their property and keep their land safe for all visitors. Realistically speaking, this can be difficult to do. Property owners should be aware of what is happening on their land at all times, especially when the land is open to the public. However, this does not absolve the landowner from the responsibility. Slip and falls can commonly happen when:
- Ice accumulates on walkways or in parking lots
- Spills are not cleaned
- Floors someone recently cleaned but did not properly cordon off
In general, landowners can fulfill their duty if they place warning signs in obvious locations or place employees in the area to let visitors know of the hazard. Whether or not the landowner took appropriate action to protect visitors is a core question in any slip and fall casein Swanton.
How Does a Visitor’s Status Affect Their Rights?
Swanton law places visitors into three classes, each with their own protections. The least amount of protection belongs to people who enter onto land without permission. These people are trespassers. Landowners must only avoid intentionally harming trespassers.
People who enter onto otherwise private property with the permission of the landowner are licensees. Landowners must exercise ordinary care to protect their visitors from hazards in addition to refraining from intentional harm.
The class of people with the most protection are invitees. These are people who enter onto land that is open to the public for a business purpose. Common examples of these include grocery stores, malls, and movie theatres. Property owners here have a duty to warn visitors of any hazards that they know about or should reasonably know about.
A prominent exception to this is the open and obvious rule. If there is a hazard that is so clearly a danger that an ordinary person would avoid it, the landowner has no duty to warn about it.
Speak with a Swanton Slip and Fall Attorney Today
A Swanton slip and fall attorney can work with victims to investigate their slip and falls. A lawyer can examine the reasons the individual was on the land and combine this knowledge with the actions taken by the landowner to determine liability. When landowners are negligent in their care for the property and a person suffers an injury, the landowner is responsible to pay for any damages.
This includes not just medical bills, but also compensation for lost earnings and any mental anguish suffered in connection with the accident. There is a limited time of two years after the incident to file a claim so do not wait, contact a Swanton slip and fall lawyer today.