Houston, TX Premises Liability Lawyers Guiding Injured Victims Through Liability Claims
Every time you go to a local store, restaurant, gas station, or even a friend’s house, there’s a chance you could accidentally injure yourself on the property. Whether you slip and fall or trip on a curb, you could end up seriously hurt, leading to expensive medical bills. When this occurs, you might wonder if you have any legal recourse to help pay for the bills you’re now facing. In many cases, the answer is yes, as long as your personal injury lawyer can prove that you have a strong premises liability claim.
If you’re not familiar with the concept of premises liability, it applies when a property owner fails to maintain safe conditions in or around any building or land they own. This applies to business properties and residential properties alike, which means victims of premises liability accidents can bring an injury claim against business owners, landowners, or homeowners.
To get started, you should have a basic understanding of Texas law when it comes to premises liability cases. Then you should reach out to Houston personal injury lawyers who can take on your legal issue. At Milano Legal Group, PLLC, we encourage you to come to our law firm for a free consultation so you can meet with our trusted legal team to discuss your options.
What Are the Basics of Texas Premises Liability Law?
If you’re not sure if your accident would fall under premises liability, you should talk to a Houston attorney about how and where you were injured. An experienced premises liability attorney can let you know if your incident would meet the guidelines for a claim. As you start thinking about this type of case, you should get to know the Texas laws surrounding this concept.
In general, premises liability law in Texas states that property owners have a legal responsibility to maintain safe conditions on their property so that people who visit it are unlikely to get injured. If you can show that the property owner did not take precautions or simply ignored existing safety hazards, leading to your injuries, you could bring a premises liability claim against them. However, premises liability claims are complex, so some accidents don’t qualify for compensation under this law.
In particular, to bring a premises liability lawsuit against a property owner, you first have to define what your reasoning for being on the property was. This will determine what kind of legal duty of care the landowner, homeowner, or business owner had to you. Most people fall into one of the following categories: invitee, licensee, or trespasser.
What’s an Invitee?
If the owner invited you to visit the property, and your presence is of mutual benefit to both parties, you’re an invitee with permission to be there. An example of this is if you’re shopping at a grocery store or getting your car’s oil changed at a local mechanic shop, where customers are encouraged to visit the property. In this case, you’re given the most amount of protection possible by law, so it’s assumed that the owner has made sure that the area is free of hazards that could hurt you.
What’s a Licensee?
If the property owner gave you permission to visit the space, and you are there for your own benefit, you’re considered a licensee. In many cases, licensees weren’t exactly invited on the property, but they do have permission to be there. This may apply to a salesperson, a friend visiting someone’s house for a party, or someone stopping by a business to use the restroom. If you’re a licensee, then the property owner has a legal obligation to warn you about any dangers on the property that you might not already know about.
What’s a Trespasser?
If you’re not a licensee or an invitee, then you may be a trespasser, meaning you did not have permission to be on the property. If the owner of the property did not invite you and was not aware you were there, the legal system states that the duty of care is minimal. They do not have to warn you about any dangerous conditions. The only expectation is that they cannot cause you any harm through intentional actions or gross negligence. As a result, if you trespassed and tripped on a pothole in the parking lot, the property owners likely would not be held liable for your claim. However, they might be considered the responsible party if there’s evidence they injured you on purpose.
This only applies to adult trespassers, not children. When children trespass on a property and get injured, the property owners may be held liable unless they did everything they could to keep out young trespassers. For instance, swimming pools are known for being appealing to children, so it is the property owner’s responsibility to reduce the risk of young trespassers gaining access to them. This might mean installing a sturdy fence with a locking gate to keep people out. If there’s no evidence the property owners made this effort, they could be held liable as the negligent party in a premises liability accident that injured one or more children.
Most people who are involved in a premises liability case are considered either a licensee or invitee. But your premises liability lawyer can tell you which category of visitors you fall into and will then assist you in beginning your claim in order to recover compensation. Come to Milano Legal Group, PLLC in Houston, to meet with an experienced personal injury attorney in Houston for a free case evaluation.
What Are the Most Common Premises Liability Cases?
If you’re not sure if your case fits in with other premises liability claims that Houston lawyers can take on, you should get to know some of the most common types of cases of this kind. In general, any time you’re hurt while on someone else’s property, there’s a chance you have a premises liability claim to pursue. The following are some common examples of personal injury cases that may be categorized as premises liability claims:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Elevator or escalator accidents
- Animal attacks, including dog bites
- Failure to provide adequate security leads to assault
- Swimming pool accidents
- Fire safety issues
- Inadequate lighting
- Defective roads
- Building code violations
- Falling objects
While slip and fall accidents tend to be the most common type of premises liability case, it’s not the only way to get injured on someone else’s property. At our Houston law firm, our personal injury lawyers can handle cases that range from a slip and fall accident that caused injuries to a construction accident that resulted in wrongful death. Regardless of the severity of your injuries or the reason you were visiting the property, you deserve the chance to take legal action to seek compensation for medical expenses and more. Contact us for a free consultation at our Houston law firm.
What Compensation Can You Recover After a Premises Liability Accident?
A Houston premises liability attorney will help you recover the maximum compensation available. After all, you will have expenses to pay after you’re injured due to property owners not warning you about known dangerous conditions. The compensation your premises liability lawyer helps you seek will be split into economic damages and non-economic damages.
What Are Economic Damages?
With this type of compensation, you can add up your expenses that resulted due to the accident that left you injured. For instance, if you ended up with head injuries, broken bones, or other medical issues, you likely got medical attention. This translates to medical expenses that may include hospital bills, prescriptions, medical equipment, and more. Your premises liability attorney can help you pursue the maximum compensation to pay for these bills.
The journey to financial and physical recovery can also include seeking funds for property damage after the incident. If the dangerous condition that hurt you also damaged your property, such as your vehicle or smartphone, your Houston premises liability lawyer can help you get compensated for this. Similarly, if you took time off work after being injured, you may have lost income that you can get as part of your premises liability lawsuit.
What Are Non-Economic Damages?
The consequences of a devastating slip and fall incident or other types of accidents can include humiliation, loss of enjoyment of life, and pain and suffering. These are all non-economic damages that your attorney can seek for you.
There’s no way to take away the emotional trauma and embarrassment of being injured on someone else’s property. But being financially compensated for it can at least allow you to take time off work if necessary and help pay for therapy in the future, which is why many accident victims seek these damages.
How Do Lawyers Help with Premises Liability Claims?
If you were injured due to a dangerous condition on someone else’s property, you deserve the chance to recover compensation so you’re not left with bills that you shouldn’t have to pay on your own. This is why you need legal representation. When you attend a free consultation at a Houston law firm, you can talk to a legal team about your options.
In most cases, your premises liability lawyer will gather all the evidence in your case, including what the legal responsibility of the property owner was and how a dangerous condition left you injured. The lawyer will then bring a claim against the property owner’s insurance company, staying in communication with them and negotiating until a settlement is reached. They can also initiate a lawsuit against the insurance company when necessary.
If you don’t want to have to deal with insurance companies to get the compensation you’re entitled to, you should hire an experienced personal injury attorney who can do the work for you. At Milano Legal Group, PLLC, our legal team is experienced and compassionate, so you can count on us to talk to the insurance companies involved to get the settlement you deserve. Contact us today at 855-545-1777 to schedule your free case evaluation.