Although modern societies enjoy some of the highest standards of public safety this world has ever known, accidents still happen with very little warning. Accidents can happen anywhere and when they do, they often impact the victim and the lives of the victim’s family in very extensive ways. This is where an Atlanta premises liability lawyer ensures that victims of accidents can seek fair compensation and hope to get their lives back in order.
At H Groves Law, we work with a wide range of clients many of whom know little or nothing about premises injury law and how to seek compensation in case of an accident. Many people are reluctant to seek compensation if they sustained their injuries in an accident at their favorite restaurant, gym, or even their friend’s house — furthermore, seeking compensation is not the initial reaction most people have to an accident.
The important thing to remember in a premises liability accident is that it is the insurance provider of the property insurance that will be footing the bill for compensation and a good lawyer can facilitate this transaction — we will discuss why this is so further in the article.
If you or someone in your family has sustained injuries in an accident that took place on another person’s property, you may have reason to make a premises liability claim. Call H Groves Law and get in touch with the experts in Atlanta personal injury liability law — Call (770) 329-9981 and arrange a FREE consultation with our expert legal team!
Do I Have a Premises Liability Claim?
If you have suffered an injury while visiting the property of another person or entity, you may have a case premises liability. The concept of premises liability is based on the notion that property owners are responsible for the safety of anyone they invite to their property. The grounds for premises liability are established if an accident were to happen to such a visitor.
But just having an accident on someone else’s property is not enough reason to pursue compensation. To seek compensation in premises liability claims it is also essential that injuries were sustained because the property owner was “negligent”. We will delve into the subject of establishing negligence further in the article.
But most importantly, you will be required to establish that you were indeed injured on the property in question at the time you say. This is where the evidence you collect will play an important role in the outcome of your case. Be sure to collect receipts, parking stubs, the contact information of eyewitnesses, and plenty of photographs of the location in question.
What are the Most Common Accidents in Premises Liability Cases in Atlanta, Georgia
H Groves Law has seen it all and has represented our clients in innumerable premises liability cases here in Atlanta, Georgia. We have also collected damages ranging from a few thousand dollars to many thousands of dollars. If your family has been affected by an accident that occurred on another person’s property — call (770) 329-9981 and get in contact with the experts in premises liability law!
While any number of different accidents can occur on another’s property, here are some of the most common types of accidents we have seen in our extensive legal experience:
Slips and falls
It only takes a small spill of liquid to turn a sturdy floor into a slippery danger zone. Property owners who would like to invite people over should immediately address spills, floods, and other hazards that can potentially cause a slip and fall.
Tripping on an unmarked step and uneven terrain
If the floor is not smooth and clear for easy walking, someone is going to trip. Drops, ridges, steps, and uneven terrain should be identified and properly illuminated to avoid accidents.
Faulty stairs or railings
The first impulse when we feel we are falling is to reach out for support. If grab bars, railings, handrails, and banisters are not properly supported, they can cause just as much damage as if they were not there at all.
Children injured while playing in an unsafe area
When considering the safety of children, extra care and concern are required. Pools, deep pits, and other excavations can cause hazards and should be fenced and covered to ensure that a child has no way to access the danger zone. Furthermore, a child can take no responsibility for their accident as they lack the reason to make the necessary judgments for their safety.
Being hit by a falling object
Falling objects can cause serious damage to anyone below. Great care should be taken when installing and storing items on high shelves. Installations made above areas meant for human traffic should be properly secured in place.
Escalator and elevator accidents
while they offer great convenience and are generally harmless, escalators and elevators can be especially dangerous if not properly operated, maintained, and serviced.
Structural failings that lead to an injury
Since the dawn of construction, great advances have been made in stacking materials and we have almost perfected the science art of creating strong and enduring structures… almost!
Of course, these are only some of the accidents common to premises liability. There are many ways that simple carelessness and negligence can cause serious harm to other people. If you have been injured on someone else’s property and are not sure about the legal perspective on your case, call (770) 329-9981 and arrange a meeting with our legal experts who can advise you on what to do next.
Who is Responsible for an Injury in a Premises Liability Case?
While it is the property owner or manager who is responsible for the injuries that occur on their property, it is the insurance provider that will be making payments for damages sustained in an accident on their property. As mentioned, the property owner must do all they reasonably can to ensure the safety of any visitors to their property. This means they are conscious of the conditions of their property, aware of any potential dangers, and have done all they can to protect their visitors from these risks.
Premises liability allows citizens to enter commercial locations and other people’s homes without fearing for their lives and safety. But accidents will still happen and, excluding freak accidents, they are typically caused by the negligence of another party.
To establish negligence in a premises liability case, four specific legal points must be established.
The property was dangerous
Construction projects, pools, wells, spills, loose wires, and other hazards are not uncommon features on private property. But they can present serious dangers to visitors.
The property owner was aware of the danger
Any reasonably minded property owners should make it their business to care for their property especially if they will be inviting people over. Part of this care involves being aware of potential dangers on the property.
The property owner failed to take action
“Negligence” is established if the property owner was aware of the danger on the property but did nothing to address the situation or warn visitors of the threat to life and limb.
Negligence on the part of the property owner led to injury
It is not enough to legally establish that the property owner acted negligently, it is also essential to establish that the negligence on the part of the property owner led to injuries. This is why you will need the doctor’s report to link the cause of the injuries to the accident and property in question.
Once these four legal elements have been established, a premises liability claim can be pursued and the property manager will be faced with liability for the accident. Of course, no two cases are alike and liability can often be shared between a variety of different parties, like contractors, managers, tenants, etc. At H Groves Law, we will conduct a thorough investigation into the matter and properly identify all parties connected to your premises liability claim.
What if My Child is Injured?
Georgia premises liability law applies somewhat differently in the case of accidents that occur to small children. Children do not respond with the same kind of reasonable caution that you will see in adults. Small children may even be attracted to the brightly colored warning signs and fall into the very hazard they warn against.
But no matter what happens or how it happens, children are never at-fault for the accidents that occur to them. For this reason, property owners must be especially careful when bringing children onto their property. The potentially hazardous area must be sealed off behind a child-proof barrier.
Unused areas of the home, areas without illumination, or areas of the home that present hazards must be surrounded by fences that a child could not breach or traverse.
Pits, wells, and excavation work should also be sealed off from access with fences, lids, or coverings that can’t be opened or accessed without considerable strength that a child lacks, or the right key.
Construction sites must be kept off limits to all juvenile access.
What if I was Injured at My Workplace?
If you are injured at the workplace, Georgia law allows you to seek worker’s compensation through your employer’s worker’s comp provider. All employers are required by law to take out workers’ comprehension. This provides coverage for the time taken off work and medical expenses if a worker becomes injured while in the line of their professional duties.
But there are some very important differences between worker’s compensation and personal injury that should be highlighted here.
Worker’s Compensation is No-Fault
There is no need to prove who was liable for your injuries if you are making a worker’s compensation claim. All you have to do is prove that you were injured at your workplace or within the line of your professional functions.
In return for the no-fault system which greatly facilitates injured workers’ seeking compensation, employers enjoy immunity from any personal injury claims made against them.
Workers’ compensation covers the following:
- Medical Expenses
- Doctor bills
- Travel expenses (if necessary)
- Prescription Medication
- Physical therapy
Worker’s compensation can also cover other expenses that are related to injuries that happen at the workplace, for example, vocational rehabilitation. Families od workers that are killed on the job can also take out worker’s compensation claims.
Worker’s Compensation will not cover all the damages that will be covered in a premises liability case. For example, in a premises liability claim, the victim could file to cover non-economic damages like “pain and suffering”. This category of damages is not something that is covered by worker’s compensation.
Is There a Deadline for Filing a Premises Liability Claim?
Different states have different time limits for filing personal injury claims which are called the “statute of limitations“. Because premises liability is a kind of personal injury claim, the statute of limitations for filing a premises liability claim in Georgia is two years from the date of the injury.
Even though you are granted this two-year time frame to make your claim, we advise you get started right away. If you are serious about securing your future against all implications of the injuries sustained in the accident, your chances are improved the earlier you begin.
H Groves Atlanta Premises Liability Lawyer
While you can never tell when accidents will happen, our civilized society has laws that ensure you will be cared for if you or your family is impacted by a personal injury. Remember that your safety is a priority when you enter the property of another person or entity, that includes commercial locations, as well as the homes of friends and family, and many other places too.
If you have been injured on someone else’s property, but are not sure what to do next, call us right away. We have a team of legal professionals who will look over the specifics of your case and aid in your pursuit of lawful compensation.