Whether you go out shopping, to a park, or even to visit a friend, property owners are responsible for your safety. Property owners who fail to keep their guests safe can be held liable for any injuries sustained on their land.
Let a Melbourne premises liability lawyer help you better understand what kind of compensation you can pursue after a property accident. Sit down for an initial consultation with our personal injury attorneys to learn what documents you need to file a lawsuit.
An individual who becomes injured on another person’s property may be able to file a premises liability complaint against the landowner. They may have slipped, suffered a swimming pool accident, been attacked by an animal, or otherwise had their safety compromised by the property owner’s negligence.
A person’s right to pursue compensation after a property accident will depend on their status as a visitor at the time of injury. Specifically, premises liability law makes distinctions between invitees, licensees, and trespassers.
Invitees are individuals who have been invited onto a person’s property and are owed the greatest degree of care by the landowner. This invitation can be implied or explicit. The duty of care owed to invitees usually includes remedying any known property hazards and warning guests of those which cannot be remedied in a timely manner.
Licensees, on the other hand, may enter a person’s land without permission, usually for their own benefit. An example of a licensee would be an independent contractor who enters a premises to check meters, do maintenance work, etc. Property owners are only required to post warnings to put licensees on notice of known hazards.
Lastly, trespassers are those who enter someone’s property without permission or reason and are not owed any level of care from landowners, according to Florida Statutes §768.075(3). However, the state’s attractive nuisance doctrine makes exceptions for when a child is caught trespassing on another person’s property. The law specifies that property owners must make deliberate attempts to protect children from any dangerous conditions on their premises if they house landscape features that might attract child trespassers, such as pools or construction equipment. A Melbourne premises liability attorney could help you better understand your visitor status and the duty of care you were owed.
Injured parties who wish to file a premises liability complaint in Florida must first establish their own relationship to the property on which they were injured. If the property owner owed the individual a duty of care, then that party may proceed with a premises liability claim.
After establishing the landowner’s duty of care, it is necessary to prove that they knew or should have known about the dangerous conditions on their property that caused the claimant’s injuries and damages. This will involve connecting the plaintiff’s losses to the defendant’s negligence.
A premises liability claim must be submitted within the statute of limitations outlined in Florida Statutes §95.11. This statute gives injured parties four years to submit the appropriate paperwork for a complaint. Otherwise, claims filed after this deadline expires risk being dismissed. Retaining the guidance of a dedicated Melbourne attorney could help you ensure your premises liability claim is filed within the statute of limitations.
Property owners who violate their duty of care can expose you and other guests to dangerous conditions and serious injuries. If negligence played a role in your or your loved one’s property accident, you may be able to collect compensation from the responsible landowner.
Our office has 30 years of combined experience litigating premises liability cases. If you want to discuss your accident and file a legal complaint, we can help you gather the information you need to get started. You can rely on a Melbourne premises liability lawyer at our firm to represent you in court if your case goes to trial.
Schedule an appointment today to discuss what our team can do for you.