Savannah Premises Liability Attorney
When you enter someone else’s property, you have the right to expect that you are reasonably safe. Unfortunately, many property owners in Savannah use or maintain their properties in unsafe ways. This can lead to serious accidents, visitor injuries, and even deaths.
If you were injured in an accident on someone else’s property, including a business or public property, contact Bowen Painter Trial Lawyers to discuss a potential premises liability lawsuit. Our experienced premises liability lawyers in Savannah can determine whether you have a case, who was responsible for your injuries, and what to do next. Call (912) 335-1909 today for your free case consultation.
How Can a Trial Attorney Help You?
Insurance companies want to avoid going to trial, as this will cost them more time and money than a settlement. Having a trial attorney represent you can show an insurance company that you are able to go to court and that you will not accept less than you deserve. A trial attorney will allow you to level the playing field when going up against a powerful property insurance company or corporation.
What Is a Premises Liability Lawsuit?
A premises liability lawsuit is a civil claim that alleges that the owner or occupier of property did something or failed to do something that a reasonable and prudent person would have in the same circumstances and that this caused the accident in question. In other words, the injuries you are claiming would not have happened but for the property owner’s negligence.
Negligence in premises liability law refers to a property owner’s failure to conduct the maintenance and repairs necessary to prevent foreseeable injuries. If a property owner knowingly ignored a trip and fall hazard, for example, the owner could be held liable for a related accident and visitor injury.
Four Elements of a Premises Liability Claim
There are four elements that you or your attorney must prove as more likely to be true than not true for a valid premises liability lawsuit in Georgia:
- Legal duty. The property owner must have had a legal duty to maintain safe premises when you entered the property.
- Breach of duty. The property owner must have failed to meet his or her legal duty due to some wrongful or careless act.
- Causation. The property owner’s breach of the duty of care must have created or contributed to the hazard that caused your injuries.
- Damages. You must have suffered compensable losses in the accident, known as damages. These may include medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
In general, all property owners owe you a duty of care unless you are a trespasser over the age of 18. An attorney can help you understand your status as a visitor, collect evidence, and build a compelling claim against one or more defendants in Savannah.
Differences in Duty of Care for a Property Owner in Savannah
The standard of care a property owner owes to a visitor depends on how the visitor is classified. Types of visitors include invitees, licensees, and trespassers.
An invitee is anyone who has been invited onto someone else’s property. Property owners must take care of invitees by mitigating dangers and warning them of potential hazards.
A licensee has been given permission to be on the property. A licensee is owed a lower standard of care than an invitee, but the property owner still has obligations to keep the premises safe for licensees. A property owner must warn them of any hazards they may not be aware of.
A trespasser does not have the property owner’s permission to be on the property, so there is no duty of care owed except to not intentionally inflict harm. An exception applies if the trespasser is a child. The property owner must take reasonable care to prevent children from accessing potentially dangerous attractions on their property, such as pools, hot tubs, and trampolines.
How to Determine Liability in a Premises Liability Claim
If you or somebody you know has been injured on another person’s property, you may be wondering if you have a premises liability case. The first step in determining whether you have a case is establishing liability. Consider the following examples.
To hold a landlord liable for your injuries, you must prove that the landlord knew or should have known about the dangerous condition of the property and failed to fix it. For example, if there is a hole in the stairs and the landlord knows about it but does not fix it, and you trip and fall down the stairs, the landlord would likely be held liable for your injuries. Additionally, if there is a hidden hazard that the landlord as aware of but fails to warn a tenant of its existence, the landlord could be held responsible if the tenant is injured as a result.
Private Property Injuries
To hold someone liable for your injuries that occurred on their private property, you must again prove that they knew or should have known about the dangerous condition on their property and failed to fix it. For example, there is a loose railing on somebody’s deck and they know about it but do not fix it. As you lean on the railing, and it breaks, causing you to fall off the deck and sustain injuries. The property owner may be held liable for your injuries.
Public Property Injuries
To hold a government entity responsible for your injuries that occurred on public property, you must first prove that your injury was caused by an act of negligence. This means that you must prove that the government entity knew or should have known about the dangerous condition on the property and failed to fix it. Holding a government entity liable is complicated, and there are different standards and deadlines for filing your claim. Always speak with an experienced lawyer if you are injured on government property.
What Damages Can You Recover After a Successful Premises Liability Claim?
When you’ve been injured on someone else’s property, you might be entitled to recover monetary compensation. The two primary types of compensation you can recover include economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are those that have a specific monetary amount attached to them. They are tangible losses that can be easily calculated by determining what financial losses you incurred. Economic damages usually consist of things like medical bills, lost wages, and property damage. Most financial losses directly attributed to the accident can be recovered under economic damages.
Non-economic damages are more difficult to quantify because they don’t have a direct dollar amount attached to them. This typically includes emotional injuries, such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Common Types of Premises Liability Accidents
If the owner of the property where you were injured reasonably could have prevented your accident, you may have grounds for a lawsuit. Many different types of premises liability accidents may allow you to bring a cause of action in Savannah, including:
- Amusement park accidents
- Construction site accidents
- Defective chairs or benches
- Dog bite injuries
- Elevator and escalator accidents
- Hotel and spa injuries
- Negligent security
- Slip, trip, and fall accidents
- Staircase accidents
- Struck-by falling objects
- Swimming pool accidents
If you are not sure whether you have grounds for a claim, our attorneys can listen to your story and go over your rights in more detail with you during a free initial consultation.
Contact Our Savannah Premise Liability Lawyers Today
You have rights as the injured victim of a premises liability accident in Savannah. At Bowen Painter Trial Lawyers, we are passionate about protecting injured property visitors and pursuing justice on their behalf. We will work tirelessly on your case for optimal results, even if this means going to trial. Our Savannah personal injury lawyers have maintained a reputation of excellence for more than 20 years.
We accept clients in the coastal regions of Georgia, South Carolina and Florida. For more information about your particular premises liability case, contact us today online or call us at (912) 335-1909.