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When a person arrives at a private property, a rational anticipation of security is expected, this means that a land owner is accountable for upholding a reasonably secure atmosphere. This is "premises liability", for anyone who enters the property. A delivery person has the right to sue you for damages assuming falls on a patch of oil on your asphalt. But, if that delivery driver was under the influence, or did something intentionally risky, he would likely not have an effective claim.
The concept of premises liability keeps owners and residents responsible for any mishaps and damages that happen inside of their property. Kinds of events that can produce a premises liability claim array from a fall on a walk way, to damage incurred in an elevator incident.
LEGAL STATUS OF VISITOR: INVITEE, LICENSEE, OR TRESPASSER?
The 4 types of people who are said to be a visitor:
- An invitee; a person who has been requested to enter the property, like a patron inside a business.
- A licensee, who can come onto the property for a reason that the owner is informed of.
- A guest; company to the owner.
- Trespassers; who come onto the property without permission.
In the case of licensees and trespassers, there is no implied promise that reasonable care has been made to assure the safety of the property.
CONDITION OF THE PROPERTY AND ACTIONS OF THE VISITOR
A “standard of care” pertains to people who were invited, and and people who have permission to be on the property. It necessitates reasonable care for the security of a visitor, with the exception of someone who is trespassing. Owners or someone who lives on the property are required to not endanger any.
Basically, owners have control over the safety of a premise and visitors do not.
If “standard of care” is sufficient depends on a lot of different influences:
- Reason that the visitor came onto the the land;
- The use of the property;
- Potential the incident;
- The owner’s exertion to fix a hazardous problem, and/or advise visitors of the problem
THE VISITOR MUST USE THE PROPERTY NORMALLY
The behavior of the hurt person is where another part of premise liability is put in play. If the injury occurred while acting in an unnecessary or risky fashion, the owner or dweller is not responsible. if a invitee goes onto the roof after being warned not to, and the guest falls after a shingle becomes unattached, resulting in a broken bone, the property owner is not accountable.
WHAT ABOUT TRESPASSERS
With trespassers, assuming that the owner is aware that trespassers can theoretically get into the property, they possess a responsibility to advise to avert injury. Specifically for security measures set in place by the owner, like guard dogs or an electric fence, being aware that they can seriously hurt someone.
COMPARATIVE FAULT: WHEN BOTH PARTIES ARE AT FAULT
A visitor can be moderately accountable for an incident. Visitors generally have a responsibility to act reasonably. When they do not, the compensation will probably be less if they also exercised negligence.
This is called "comparative fault" in personal injury law. When the hurt person's legal compensation is cut by a ratio that is equal to their culpability in the accident. For example, if the injured person is 25% responsible for an incident where damages totaled $20k, their portion would equal $15k.
Personal Injury Attorney Stephen L. Winig, Esq. is a member of the Palm Beach County Bar Association, and is licensed to practice before all
Florida State Courts, as well as the United States District Courts for Southern and Middle Florida.
Winig Law routinely handles cases throughout Palm Beach County including West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Wellington,
Jupiter, Palm Beach Gardens, Greenacres, Lake Worth, Royal Palm Beach and surrounding areas.
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