Premises Liability Attorneys in Bedford, VA
Property owners are responsible for keeping their property safe and free from hazards that could harm visitors — that’s the basic concept behind premises liability law. When you get hurt on someone else’s property, whether it’s a store, office, home, or other type of property, you may be able to seek compensation for the injuries you suffer. Learn more about these cases, and for more personalized assistance with your case, call Pack Law Group at 540-586-7225.
What is Premises Liability?
Premises liability refers to an owner’s responsibility to keep their property safe for visitors. This is referred to as a “duty of care.” The amount of obligation you have to a visitor depends on which category the visitor falls into.
Invitees are those who are on the property through express or implied invitation. For example, a store’s visitors are often considered invitees. They are on the property for a permitted purpose and are “invited” in the sense that the store is open.
Licensees are those who are on the property for their own benefit with the consent of the owner. For example, a social guest at your home would likely be considered a licensee.
Trespassers are those who are on property without permission. They are there unlawfully. Under the law, property owners owe the least duty of care to trespassers. However, they cannot intentionally put trespassers in danger through traps or other dangerous conditions.
When one of these three types of visitors gets injured on a another party’s property, the amount of liability the owner has depends on which type of visitor they are.
Types of Premises Liability Accidents
The majority of premises liability accidents are slip and fall cases. Falls can cause a range of injuries, from minor abrasions and bruises to serious traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord damage. Slip and fall accidents are often caused by:
- Built-up snow and ice
- Poor maintenance of stairways
- Liquid spills
- Unavoidable obstacles causing trips
Other types of premises liability accidents include:
- Poor building security that leads to assault
- Elevator or escalator accidents
- Dog bites and animal attacks
- Swimming pool accidents
- Trampoline accidents
- Crumbling stairways and walkways
- Parking lot accidents
- Falling items
Regardless of which type of premises liability case you may have, you’ll likely be looking at the same types of damages across the board. The amount of compensation you can collect depends quite a bit on the severity of the accident, your ability to prove the other party’s liability, and how much your injures have impacted your life. Once you start pursuing a personal injury case, you may be able to seek compensation for:
- Medical bills. In the aftermath of a slip and fall, animal bite, or other type of accident, you should seek medical attention promptly. Depending on how severe your injuries are and how much follow-up care you need, your expenses could easily add up to thousands of dollars. If your injury is severe enough that you need long-term care, the amount you receive should also cover future medical expenses. When calculating this, don’t forget to think about the costs of prescription medication, medical equipment, and adaptive equipment.
- Lost wages. It is rare that a premises liability accident doesn’t require a victim to spend at least a few days away from work. If your injury requires you to go on light duty or otherwise take time away from work to recuperate, your settlement should account for the money you lost because of this accident.
- Lost future income. Some accidents are so serious that they permanently impact an individual’s ability to work. If your injury leaves you unable to do the job you were doing prior to the accident or affects your ability to keep moving up the career ladder, you should seek compensation for those losses.
- Pain and suffering. Slip and fall accidents, dog bites, and other types of premises liability cases often cause victims a substantial amount of pain and suffering. Nothing can give you back the time you lost to the accident and the time you spent suffering, but the court does award money for pain and suffering.
You may be able to seek compensation for other types of losses. To figure out what you may be entitled to after an accident, it’s important to speak to a lawyer and discuss the specifics of your case.
Why You Need a Premises Liability Lawyer
Without the help of a qualified personal injury lawyer, you could give up a significant amount of money trying to handle a claim on your own. When an insurance company—in this case, a homeowner’s insurance company or business insurance provider—learns about an accident on an insured property, they go into damage control mode.
Their goal is to pay as little as possible, which may even mean trying to pay you nothing. They’ll talk to you about the accident, try to trick you into admitting fault, and try to get evidence that your injury isn’t really bad enough to warrant a payout.
This all happens before you even know that they are fooling you. By the time you realize it, you’ve signed away your right to sue and it is too late to do anything else about it—unless you hire an attorney. Your attorney will take over all communication with the insurance company and their legal team, building a case that highlights your injuries and the insurance company’s client’s liability.
In many cases, an experienced attorney can get these cases settled for a fair amount without even entering the courtroom. When necessary, your attorney will take your case to court and fight to get you everything you deserve. This limits your stress during a time that you need to focus on your recuperation and gives you a strong chance at getting the compensation you rightfully deserve.
Turn to Pack Law Group
Pack Law Group is here to help you if you have been injured on someone else’s property. We know how stressful and overwhelming these times can be, and we want to handle your legal issues while you focus on healing. Learn more about your options now by calling us at 540-586-7225 or contacting us online.