For many of us, the majority of our waking hours are spent outside of our homes — at work, at church, at community events or shopping. As guests at these places, it is not reasonable to think that we can be aware of all the potential hazards on the property. Personal injury at any of these places falls into the legal category of premises liability.
Premises liability generally refers to accidents that happen to a guest or trespasser and take place on another’s property. These property-holders include homeowners and business owners, and the injuries usually result from an unsafe condition on the land due to the negligence of the owner or some failure to warn of the dangers. Landowners retain varying degrees of responsibility towards their visitors, depending on the category of law into which the visitors fall: invitee, licensee or trespasser. These categories are usually determined by the nature of the visit — whether it is for commercial or social purposes, whether it is by invitation or an intrusion.
To determine liability, inquiries will be made into the creation of the hazard, the length of time the hazard has existed, whether the landowner knew of the hazard or whether the landowner should have know of the hazard.
If you need to speak with an attorney about premises liability litigation, the lawyers at Piet & Wright are available for consultation.