Property owners have a duty of care to maintain safe premises. The duty of care extends to guests or people invited onto the property.
If you have been injured while on someone else’s property, let Lattof & Lattof, P.C., help you seek the compensation you deserve.
Our Mobile premises liability lawyers have over 100 years of combined experience helping injury victims in Alabama.
Give us a call today to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys. We are standing by 24/7, so call us today at (251) 432-6691 to schedule a time to discuss your case with one of our attorneys.
Why Should You Hire Lattof & Lattof to Help You With Your Premises Liability Claim?
Premises liability law can be very complicated. The cases are often based on negligence. Therefore, you must prove the legal requirements of a negligence case to win a premises liability case.
Our personal injury lawyers understand these claims. We have the resources and skills to investigate accidents to determine how the accident occurred and who is responsible. Our legal team gathers evidence to build a strong case against the property owner for fault and liability.
While you focus on your recovery, we focus on building a case for maximum compensation. Our lawyers do not stop until we exhaust every avenue of potential compensation for your premises liability claim.
How Do You Prove a Premises Liability Case in Mobile?
In most premises liability cases, you must prove the following legal elements:
- the property owner owed a duty of care to the victim;
- there was a breach of the duty of care;
- an accident occurred because of the breach of care; and,
- the victim’s injuries were a direct result of the accident.
Property owners owe a duty of care to their guests, invitees, and others on their property to keep the property free of hazards and dangers that could result in an accident. If there is a dangerous condition or hazard, the property owner must provide adequate warnings. For example, a store owner owes a duty of care to customers to keep the floor dry and free from tripping hazards.
Guests are owed the highest duty of care because the property owner invited them onto the property.
The second group of people, licensees, have implied or express permission to be on the property. They include mailpersons, repairpersons, and utility company employees. The owner owes licensees a fairly high duty of care too.
Property owners owe trespassers the lowest duty of care. A trespasser does not have permission to be on the property. The person is on the property illegally.
An Exception for Children
Children who are trespassing are owed a high duty of care, especially if there is an “attractive nuisance” on the property. An owner must take extra steps to prevent a child from being injured even if the child is trespassing. The reason is that children cannot appreciate the risk and danger because of their age and maturity.
The most common example of an attractive nuisance is a swimming pool. A child may be attracted to the swimming pool, even though it is dangerous for the child to be near the pool without supervision. A property owner could be liable for a child’s injuries if the owner did not take reasonable steps to prevent children from coming near the pool.
Reasonable steps might include putting a fence around the pool with a self-locking gate, removing the pool ladder when the pool is not in use, or installing an alarm on the gate and pool cover.
Causes of Premises Liability Accidents in Mobile
The factors that contribute to a premises liability accident vary. Many types of accidents can lead to premises liability claims. One of the most common types of premises liability claims are slips, trips, and falls.
A person may trip over items on the floor or fall because of uneven or broken flooring. The person could slip on something wet on the floor that causes the surface to be slick.
However, many other hazards can cause an injury. Common hazards and locations for premises liability claims include, but are not limited to:
- uneven surfaces, such as parking lots, walkways, sidewalks, carpeting, and other flooring material
- slick and slippery surfaces
- slip and fall accidents
- dog bites and dog attacks
- escalator and elevator accidents
- swimming pool accidents
- broken steps or stairs
- missing or broken handrails
- inadequate lighting
- amusement park accidents
- injuries and assaults because of lack of security
- porch or balcony collapses or railing problems
- playground accidents
- water leaks, spills, or flooding
- inadequate property maintenance and repairs
- electrical cords and outlets
- items falling from shelves
- cluttered walkways and tripping hazards
- fires and explosions
- exposure to toxic or dangerous chemicals or fumes
Our Mobile premises liability lawyers help injury victims prove that the property owner knew or should have known about the danger and failed to correct the problem, so that you can recover compensation for your injuries.
Common Premises Liability Injuries
When you fall or have an accident, you can sustain severe injuries. Some injuries caused by slips and falls can result in life-threatening conditions. In some cases, your injury could result in a permanent disability or impairment.
Common injuries sustained in premises liability accidents include:
- broken bones and fractures
- head and brain injuries
- neck injuries and whiplash
- back injuries
- spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- traumatic brain injury
- wrongful death
The severity of your injuries has a direct impact on the damages you might receive when you file a premises liability claim. Our legal team works diligently to document your damages so that we can maximize your recovery for an injury claim.
How Much is a Premises Liability Claim Worth?
The money you may receive after being injured on another party’s property depends on several factors. The type and severity of the injury, the duration of your recovery, missed time from work, medical bills, and available insurance coverage are just a few of the factors that impact the value of your premises liability claim.
Our goal is to ensure that all damages are included in your claim and valued at the maximum amount allowed by law. While each claim is unique, some damages are common in most premises liability cases.
Damages that are generally common to a premises liability claim include:
- medical expenses and bills
- hospital and surgical costs
- therapy and physician bills
- past and future loss of income and benefits
- loss of earning potential
- scarring, disfigurement, and disability
- physical pain and suffering
- emotional distress and mental anguish
- loss of quality or enjoyment of life
You can help our legal team by keeping copies of all receipts and invoices related to your accident. You may also want to keep notes in a journal regarding your pain and suffering, such as daily pain levels and activities you cannot perform. These notes can help maximize the value of your non-economic damages.
How Does Alabama’s Pure Contributory Negligence Laws Affect a Premises Liability Claim?
Alabama has adopted the harshest standard for contributory negligence. Only three other states and the District of Columbia use this standard.
Under a pure contributory negligence system of determining damages, if the victim contributes to the cause of the injury in any way, the victim is not entitled to compensation for any portion of the damages.
In other words, if the insurance company or defendant proves that you were even slightly at fault for the cause of the injury, you receive nothing for your claim.
For that reason, it is usually in your best interest to work with an experienced premises liability attorney in Mobile who understands how to fight false allegations of contributory negligence.
Working with an attorney from the beginning of your case can also help you avoid some of the common mistakes victims make that can hurt their claim, such as giving statements to the insurance company. Statements can be twisted to create contributory negligence when none existed.
What is the Statute of Limitations for a Premises Liability Claim in Alabama?
The Statute of Limitations or deadline for filing a premises liability claim in Alabama is generally two years from the date of the accident. However, there are some incidents in which the time to file a claim could be sooner, as in cases involving government entities.
Do not wait to contact our lawyers. Call now so that you can retain your legal right to file a lawsuit to hold a negligent property owner responsible for your injuries and damages.
Let Our Mobile Premises Liability Lawyers Help You Get the Compensation You Deserve
Being injured on another person’s property can cause catastrophic injuries and significant financial losses. You deserve to be compensated fairly for your damages. However, the insurance company and the property owner may not be willing to be fair.
Contact Lattof & Lattof for a free consultation with an Alabama premises liability attorney. We explain your legal rights, answer your questions, and provide the support you need as you seek compensation for your injuries and losses.