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An Overview of Premises Liability Laws in the State of California 

In the State of California premises liability laws will generally mandate that property owners provide a reasonably safe setting for those who enter their premises. This can include people who live in the property, work in the property, or are there for visiting purposes. While these laws will mandate property owners to have a basic duty of care in maintaining a safe property, they will also require that property owners alert people of any potential dangers on the premises in an effort to minimize the potential of injuries, accidents, and even casualties.

Unfortunately, many people suffer the consequences of irresponsible property owners. This is because not all property owners work diligently to uphold their legal responsibilities. Their lack of responsibility, therefore, can result in injuries that can leave a person with severe grievances that include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Inability to work
  • High medical bills
  • The need for lifelong medical care
  • Painful and debilitating injuries, or even death.

A Property Owners’ Reasonable Duty of Care

When an injury has happened on someone else’s property, one of the primary steps in determining if there is a valid case is determining if the property owner had a duty of care to the injured individual. Thereby, a reasonable duty of care has to be evaluated. The following elements can help in determining if there is, in fact, a valid claim.

  • A preventable or otherwise foreseeable hazard?
  • Proper precautions in an effort to mitigate a person’s risk?
  • Sufficient warning to those at risk?
  • Did the individual in question cause or somehow contribute to the incident that caused his or her injury?

State of California laws generally indicate a property owner’s basic duty of care as the following:

  • A duty of care cannot be delegated to an alternative party, such as a private contractor.
  •   A basic duty of care is owed to all individuals, whether or not they have a legal right to be on the premises.

Establishing the Owner’s Responsibility

In determining the validity of a premises liability case, several factors need to be established. These can be, but are not limited to the following:

  • Did the property owner owe a duty of care to the injured individual?
  • Was there a breach in the owner’s duty of care?
  • Did the breach result in the party’s injuries?

It is worth mentioning that the specifics of each premises liability claim will be unique.  Consult with a qualified attorney who has an understanding of the current state law. An experienced attorney will not only help you determine if you have a valid claim, he or she will also assist in strategizing for your claim to give your claim the best opportunity at being successful.

While most premises liability claims involve slip and fall incidents, a premises liability claim can also involve, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Construction on the property
  • Animal attacks
  • Structure collapse/defects
  • Swimming area incidents
  • A failure to provide sufficient premises security and/or area lighting
  • Knowledge of, or notice to, the defendants relating to the defect
  • Recently created dangers
  • Dangerous areas
  • Lack of maintenance creating a dangerous condition
  • Lighting and visibility

Presenting a Premises Liability Claim in the State of California: Obtaining the Appropriate Legal Representation

There are various factors that could affect a premises liability claim. If you have been injured in someone else’s property, speak to a qualified attorney who can advocate for your rights. The aftermath of an injury can be detrimental and it can cause burdens, not only to yourself but to your loved ones as well. Seek the support of an experienced attorney to obtain the compensation you are owed.

If you have been injured due to the hazardous conditions of someone else’s property, the attorneys at Heiting & Irwin can advocate on your behalf. The attorneys at Heiting & Irwin are experienced in the field of premises liability claims and can guide you through your available options. Speak to a knowledgeable and qualified attorney who can vigorously champion for your rights.

Mr. Serrano has been admitted to practice before California State and Federal Courts. He was named to the Super Lawyers’ 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 Southern California Rising Stars List, an honor awarded to no more than 2.5% of attorneys in Southern California each year. View Attorney Jean-Simon Serrano's Attorney Bio Here.

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