top of page

Understanding Premises Liability Claims: A Claimant's Guide

Premises liability law encompasses the legal principles that hold property owners and occupiers responsible for accidents and injuries that occur on their property. As a claimant, navigating these claims can be complex. This article provides an overview of common questions and answers related to premises liability claims from the perspective of someone who has suffered an injury on someone else's property.

Q1: What is a Premises Liability Claim? A premises liability claim arises when an individual is injured on property owned or maintained by someone else, and the injury was caused due to unsafe conditions or negligence on the part of the property owner or occupier. These claims can involve various situations, including slip and falls, inadequate security, or even dog bites.

Q2: Who Can Be Held Liable in a Premises Liability Case? The property owner or occupier can be held liable in a premises liability case. This includes individuals, businesses, or even governmental entities. Liability is generally based on the owner's or occupier’s failure to maintain the property safely or to warn of potential hazards.

Q3: What Do I Need to Prove in a Premises Liability Case? To succeed in a premises liability claim, you generally need to prove the following:

  • The defendant owned, leased, occupied, or controlled the property.

  • The defendant was negligent in the use or maintenance of the property.

  • You were harmed.

  • The defendant's negligence was a substantial factor in causing your harm.

Q4: What is Considered ‘Negligence’ in These Cases? Negligence in premises liability refers to the property owner's failure to use reasonable care to keep the premises safe. This could involve failing to repair a hazard, not warning visitors of a potential danger, or not inspecting the property regularly to identify risks.

Q5: Are There Different Rules for Trespassers? Yes. Property owners generally have a lower duty of care to trespassers than to invitees or licensees (people who are either explicitly or implicitly invited onto the property). However, owners may still be liable for willful or wanton conduct that injures a trespasser.

Q6: What Should I Do if I Am Injured on Someone Else’s Property? If you’re injured on someone else’s property:

  • Seek medical attention immediately.

  • Document the scene where the injury occurred, if possible.

  • Gather names and contact information of any witnesses.

  • Report the incident to the property owner or manager.

  • Consult with a legal expert specializing in premises liability.

Q7: What Kind of Damages Can I Recover? In a premises liability claim, you may be able to recover damages for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more, depending on the specifics of your case.

Q8: Is There a Time Limit for Filing a Premises Liability Claim? Yes. The time limit, known as the statute of limitations, varies by state. Florida has recently reduced this timeframe from four years to two years. It’s crucial to file your claim within this period, or you risk losing your right to sue.

Q9: Do I Need a Lawyer for a Premises Liability Claim? Having a lawyer can significantly benefit your case. Premises liability law can be complex, and an experienced attorney can help navigate the legal process, gather necessary evidence, and negotiate with insurance companies.

Premises liability claims can be intricate, involving various legal and factual issues. Understanding your rights and the basics of these claims is crucial. If you’ve been injured on someone else's property, consider consulting a legal professional to explore your options and protect your rights.


bottom of page