Know the rules before filing a premises liability claim

On Behalf of | Jun 29, 2020 | Personal Injury

Pennsylvania business owners and managers have a broad range of responsibilities, from increasing sales to managing budgets and staff. However, a crucial part of their duties includes keeping their customers safe. If you slip and fall while at a business, they may be liable for your injuries. We often represent clients in negligence and premises liability lawsuits. 

NuWire Investor says slip-and-fall accidents, covered under premises liability claims, occur if your injury is the result of a trip, slip or fall on another person’s property. 

Conditions of premises

Incidents can happen anywhere at any time. Outdoor conditions that often lead to an injury include broken or uneven sidewalks and potholes hidden from view by puddles or snow. Factors that could lead to injuries inside include: 

  • Wet floors 
  • Unsafe staircase (narrow, no handrail, steps in disrepair) 
  • Torn carpets 

However, just because these conditions exist, does not automatically make your liability claim valid. 

Claim elements

Premises liability issues include detailed investigations, and valid claims must contain specific elements. The first is that the responsible person causes the situation. They may have spilled liquid in an aisle but made no move to clean it up, or dragged a heavy item across a carpet, causing a tear. 

Another element is that an extended time passed without corrective action. In a small operation where there is only one person on duty, if they spilled liquid and was getting a mop when you fell, there may be no liability. If the spill occurred an hour or more ago and they did not take care of the issue, or put up a wet floor sign, there may be grounds for a lawsuit. 

The premises must meet building codes and other statutes. If you walked down steps that had no handrail, it might be a building violation. 

Failure to take precautions necessary for customer safety can result in injuries, including broken bones, concussions and spinal cord damage. Personal injury cases involving premises liability may or may not go to court, depending on your unique situation.