Many Georgia property owners have a duty to keep their premises safe for visitors. Therefore, a person injured by a faulty handrail or stairwell may be able to hold the property owner liable for its negligence. Dedicated premises liability lawyer Terrence R. Bethune has significant experience helping injured Atlanta residents seek compensation. If you were hurt by faulty handrails or stairwells in a store, mall, or other business, Mr. Bethune can guide you in seeking the money to which you may be entitled.
HOLD NEGLIGENT PROPERTY OWNERS ACCOUNTABLE
Georgia law tasks property owners with certain responsibilities, one of which is preventing the injury of guests. The precautions that a person or entity takes to prevent harm to others depends on how the premises are used. Businesses that invite customers onto their property for their own commercial benefit owe the highest standard of care. Malls, grocery stores, and other entities fall into this category. These owners must inspect their premises and keep them free from dangers.
A person harmed by a hazardous condition on a business’ property can file a lawsuit against the entity in control of it. To succeed, the injured person must prove:
- A hazardous condition existed on the property;
- The owner was aware or should have been aware of it;
- The owner did not fix it; and
- There was a causal link between the danger and the person’s injuries.
A faulty handrail, rotting steps, or an unprotected drop off might all be examples of dangerous conditions. Under Georgia law, a property owner does not need to have actual knowledge of the hazard to be held liable. Instead, if the owner failed to make a regular inspection of the premises, and an invited guest was injured by a dangerous condition that would have been discovered upon an inspection, the owner may still be liable for the injuries.
Causation in Georgia consists of two parts: legal causation and factual causation. The hazardous condition must meet both parts to be considered the cause of the injured person’s harm. This means that the accident would not have happened if not for the owner’s negligence, and that it was a foreseeable result of the failure to inspect for, warn of, or repair the area.
If the owner did not fix the danger, whether or not it knew about it, and the condition caused the victim’s injuries, the defendant can be held liable for costs arising from them. An individual who successfully proves his or her premises liability case may be entitled to compensatory damages from the property owner. One common source of compensation is past and future medical expenses incurred as a result of the injury. Another example is lost wages from missed work. Physical and emotional forms of harm, such as pain and suffering or mental anguish, are also compensable under Georgia law.
DISCUSS YOUR SLIP AND FALL CASE WITH AN ATLANTA LAWYER
If you were hurt on the property of a negligent business or individual, you have rights. Georgia law tasks many property owners with the duty to keep their premises free of dangerous hazards. Slip and fall attorney Terrence R. Bethune takes pride in helping individuals near Atlanta who have been injured by conditions such as a faulty handrail or stairwell. Call 800-465-8733 or email us to learn about your rights and whether you may have a claim for compensation.