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Holding a property owner liable in a premises liability action

We all likely enter the property of others on a daily or at least weekly basis. Whether you are going to work, school, shopping or to a friend's house, one is accustomed to entering another's property without issue. There is the underlying assumption that the property owner has taken measure to reduce and even eliminate any hazards or dangers that may be present on the property. Unfortunately, this is not always that case. A visitor could suffer a sudden and unexpected injury, giving rise to a premises liability action against the property owner.

In order to hold a property owner liable, certain factors need to be assessed. To begin, the legal status of the injured visitor should be established. Were they an invitee, social guest, licensee or a trespasser? In most cases a trespasser does not have an implied process that the property is safe and clear of hazards. Next, the condition of the property should be assessed. This means determining if reasonable care has been exercised for the safety of any visitor.

Finally, one should determine if both parties were at fault. This means that both parties had a duty and both parties failed to uphold that duty. In these matters, comparative fault may apply, which could result in the injured party getting a reduced percentage of the damages.

Whether it was a slip-and-fall incident, a dog bite or any other injury suffered on the property of another's, it is important to fully understand the matter. This means exploring your rights, possible legal recourses and what steps are necessary to complete an action. A premises liability claim could help an injured party hold a negligent property owner accountable and assist with the recover of compensation to address the resulting losses and damages.

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