Property owners cannot neglect their land to the point that it poses a danger for invited guests. Georgia law requires that landowners keep their property safe and free from dangerous hazards. Atlanta inadequate maintenance liability lawyer Terrence R. Bethune can help you if you were injured by a maintenance hazard in a store, restaurant, or another public place. You may be entitled to compensation if your injury was caused by a negligent property owner.
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EVEN NONFATAL INJURIES CAN COST YOU
Everyone understands how a fatal or serious injury can affect a person’s life. However, even non-serious injuries can be completely disruptive. Physical injuries can affect mobility. Lost wages and medical bills can strain the family budget. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, the daily hospital expenses for just one patient’s care have increased by almost $400 over the last 11 years.
CUSTOMERS INJURED BY INADEQUATE MAINTENANCE MAY FILE A LAWSUIT
Owners of land to which customers are invited have the highest duty of any property owner. They must keep their premises safe from hazardous or dangerous conditions. An invited guest who is injured by a dangerous condition has the right to file a premises liability lawsuit in Georgia court. The success of this claim will depend on proving four necessary elements:
- The property had a dangerous condition;
- The owner knew or should have known about this condition;
- The owner did not neutralize the dangerous condition; and
- The victim’s injuries were caused by the condition.
Based on these elements, the most important aspect of such a case is the dangerous condition that existed on the property. So what is a dangerous condition?
A dangerous condition can be anything that has the potential to harm a visitor. Wet or slippery floors are a classic example of a dangerous condition, but there are many more. Floorboards that have become unsecured, stairs that have deteriorated, or uneven concrete could all be dangerous conditions. Other inadequately maintained components of a property, such as rusting pipes, unsecured safety rails, or a crumbling roof might also be considered dangerous conditions.
If some sort of dangerous condition exists on the property, the landowner has a duty to make a reasonable inspection of the property to discover the condition, or the law may conclude that he should have known about it.
If the landowner then fails to fix the maintenance problem, put up a warning sign, or fence off the area, the landowner may be liable if an invited guest is injured.
DAMAGES ARE AVAILABLE TO SUCCESSFUL PLAINTIFFS
When an injured person prevails in a premises liability lawsuit, he or she may be entitled to damages from the negligent landowner. Economic damages reimburse the victim for medical bills, physical therapy, or other expenses incurred as a result of the accident. Noneconomic damages compensate a victim for emotional, physical, or psychological injuries, such as pain and suffering or emotional distress.
ASK A KNOWLEDGEABLE GEORGIA LAWYER ABOUT YOUR INJURY
If you were injured on the property of another person or company, you may be entitled to compensation. Property owners must keep their buildings safe for invited customers, and you can hold negligent property owners accountable. Atlanta slip and fall accident attorney Terrence R. Bethune has helped many Georgia residents seek compensation for all types of injuries. Call 1-800-INJURED or fill out the online contact form to schedule a free consultation.