As a customer of a business, you have the right to a reasonable expectation of safety. Yet, some do not abide by safety standards and put patrons at risk. If you slip and fall at a business, you may worry that its owner will not take responsibility for your injuries. But premises liability may make them accountable by duty.
Understanding premises liability
Premises liability gives customers recourse after a slip and fall accident at a business. It applies in situations where a business owner showed negligence by failing to maintain their property. Yet, premises liability will not protect you if your slip and fall injury stemmed from your own negligence. And it does not protect you if you injured yourself while trespassing on a business’ property.
To make a valid slip and fall claim, you must prove:
- You were lawfully on the business’ premises
- The business’ owner knew or should have known about the unsafe condition and failed to correct it
- The business’ negligence led to your injury
Understanding your defenses
After your accident, you can protect yourself by documenting the scene. You must also report the incident to the business’ owner or an employee. Yet, the burden of proof may remain on you after making your claim. The amount of evidence in most slip and fall cases is small. And courts often issue judgments based off a preponderance of the evidence, meaning whether they find your claim probable. You also may have the defense of constructive notice. This argument will apply if the business’ owner should have known about the danger on their premises yet failed to take appropriate action.
While proving a slip and fall claim is difficult, it is by no means impossible. Furthermore, it’s crucial to make one if you want to receive the recourse you deserve. An attorney with personal injury experience can help you do so.