A person who is injured while on the premises of another has the right, under Premise Liability Law, to seek compensation from the property owner. A court may determine whether or not compensation should be paid, and will also determine the amount of compensation. In general, compensation will only be payable if the claimant can prove that the property owner was negligent in some way, and that it was this negligence which led to the injury or loss.
Premise Liability Law and the Workplace
Any employee who suffers an injury while in his or her place of work is covered by the terms of Premise Liability Law. If the employee can prove negligence on behalf of the employer, compensation may be payable.
This is a complex area, and it is advisable to seek advice from an accident lawyer. To see why, it is best to look at a couple of examples.
1) The first example is relatively straightforward. A storeowner decides to replace the flooring behind the store counter. The new flooring is elevated several inches above the surrounding flooring. It is installed overnight when the store is closed.
The following morning, the employee responsible for opening the store, trips over the new flooring and injures herself. The storeowner had not told her of the new flooring, and accident lawyers could claim that the owner is negligent.
2) The second example is more complicated. A store uses a basement area to hold stock. Access to the basement is via a trapdoor. The owner realizes that the trapdoor is potentially dangerous when open. She buys a protective cage to be placed around the trapdoor before it is opened. Every member of staff is shown how to use the cage, and given explicit orders that they must use it every time they want to open the trapdoor.
An employee, believing he is the only employee in the store at the time, opens the trapdoor without putting the safety cage in place. A cleaner coming to work earlier than expected falls through the open trapdoor and is injured.
While the cleaner's injuries are clearly the result of negligence, who is actually responsible for paying compensation? An accident injury lawyer could best explain the options in this particular example.
Nearly every area of law has the potential to be extremely complicated, and Premise Liability Law is no exception. What may seem to be a straightforward case can have many twists and turns. Whether you are a plaintiff (claimant) or an employer, it is a high-risk strategy to proceed without getting professional advice from a specialist accident lawyer. Not only can an experienced accident lawyer insure that all the facts beneficial to your case are presented, but he or she is best qualified to know if the compensation amount offered or asked for is realistic.