Thousands of Georgia residents get injured annually because property and company owners don’t make their premises safe for visitors. Hazards such as clumped carpeting, unmopped spills, and poor illumination can cause injuries like sprains, fractured bones, and brain or spinal cord injuries.
These incidents classify as premises liability cases, meaning that the property owner or manager could be held financially responsible for your injuries and other losses.
Injured parties can hold property owners or occupiers accountable under Georgia’s premises liability law if they can prove that the owner or occupier was negligent in causing or failing to repair the hazardous situation that caused the accident.
Victims of dog bites have the right to sue the dog’s owner under premises liability laws if the owner fails to confine or leash their dogs.
If you or a loved one sustained injuries on another party’s property, you may seek compensation through a premises liability claim. A seasoned Atlanta personal injury attorney can help you get the compensation you deserve.
Elements of a Georgia Premises Liability Case
In Georgia, the plaintiff in a premises liability case must prove four elements.
Duty of Care
The property owner and other parties may be liable in a premises liability case. Any person or entity who can alter the state of the property might be held responsible. These may include the property’s owner, management, or a lessee.
According to Georgia premise liability law, different standards may apply to various entities depending on the specifics of the case. For instance, the responsibilities of a property owner and a landlord vary widely.
Breach of Duty of Care
The plaintiff must prove that the defendant’s negligence caused the unsafe conditions resulting in their injuries.
The Plaintiff Suffered an Injury
The plaintiff must show that their injuries warrant compensation. If you slip and fall in a shop but don’t hurt yourself, you probably don’t have a case for premises liability.
Damages are the amount of money awarded to a victim in tort law.
The Defendant’s Negligence Caused the Plaintiff’s Injury
The plaintiff must show that the defendant’s actions or inaction caused the injury. It is insufficient to show that a hazard existed in a premises liability claim. Instead, the plaintiff must show that the defendant’s negligence created the danger.
Premises liability requires more than the presence of a harmful situation and an accident. It may also be challenging to prove negligence if an injury occurred on the property but was not the result of a premises liability hazard.
The Comparative Negligence Law in Georgia
Georgia is a comparative negligence jurisdiction. According to local statutes, if a defendant is found to be partially responsible for the injury they incurred due to their negligence, the court must establish the level of that liability and lower any awarded damages appropriately.
If the Georgia court finds that the plaintiff was more than half liable for their injuries due to their negligence, the plaintiff will be barred from recovering damages.
Examples of Premises Liability Lawsuits
Various types of scenarios can cause personal injury on a property. The following are examples of common types of premises liability cases:
Slip and Fall or Trip and Fall
Injury from slipping and falling can occur when a floor, stairs, ramp, or sidewalk is damaged, cracked, uneven, or slippery. This can also happen when there is a pipe leak, debris on the floor, or the carpeting becomes loose.
Injuries from a vicious dog bite occur when a dog attacks a person because its owner was careless and did not restrain or warn others of the animal’s vicious tendencies.
These are situations where a person sustains injuries or dies because of an elevator accident.
This can happen in instances such as when:
- The elevator door opens but there is no elevator and the person falls down the shaft.
- The elevator is not level, creating a tripping hazard by stopping unevenly with the exterior floor.
- When malfunctioning elevator doors strike or entrap passengers.
Claims because of escalator-related injuries often involve:
- The escalator’s excessive speed
- Sudden stops or accelerations
- Faulty emergency controls
- Dangerous protruding metal parts
- Uunsafe gaps between steps
Lack of Fire Safety
You can suffer injuries due to the following:
- Building code violations
- Absent or defective smoke detectors
- Malfunctioning fire alarms
- Poor sprinkler systems
- Lack of fire protection equipment
- Inaccessible fire exits
Falling Objects or Merchandise
Injuries to the head from falling merchandise are common in retailers where products are stacked or placed on shelves at great heights from the ground.
Balcony or Deck Collapse
Poor construction, poor repairs, lack of maintenance, lack of inspection, or negligent overloading can cause a railing to fail, resulting in a fall from a deck or balcony, or the complete or partial collapse of a deck or balcony.
When the owner or manager of a residence, hotel, retail mall, hospital, concert arena, or other public gathering place fails to maintain reasonably secure premises, a victim of a violent crime may file a claim for damages.
If a security officer, bouncer, or other loss prevention employee was careless or overzealous and used excessive or unjustified force, the client could file a claim for damages.
Swimming Pool Accidents
Accidents at the swimming pool may happen because of the following:
- Untrained lifeguards
- Inattentive lifeguards
- Inadequate fences or barriers to prevent access by children
- Pool drain entrapment
- Negligent child supervision
- Inadequate markings or signage
Failure to follow proper drowning prevention protocols contributes to swimming pool accidents, which can lead to drowning or submersion injuries.
Negligent Supervision of Children
The term “negligent supervision of children” refers to situations where an adult or entity with temporary responsibility for a child fails to exercise reasonable care to prevent the child’s injury or damages.
Call Our Atlanta Premises Liability Lawyers Today!
Unfortunately, victims of premises liability incidents in Georgia may face difficulty obtaining justice due to the state’s complex legal framework. Therefore, getting in touch with a competent personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after an accident is crucial.
The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Georgia is two years. Our team of seasoned Atlanta injury attorneys at Bethune Law Firm will advise you on how to ensure you get maximum compensation for your damages.
Call 1-800-INJURED to schedule a free consultation and evaluate your case.