Common Types of Premises Liability Claims

repair in progress sign near an elevator - types of premises liability claims concept

Premises liability is one of the most common types of claims raised in personal injury lawsuits. In these cases, a plaintiff alleges that they were injured on another person’s property as a result of the owner’s negligence. To prevail in a premises liability claim, the victim must establish that the owner or another responsible party knew or should have known about the hazardous condition and failed to make timely repairs or issue a warning. While there are many ways in which premises liability can arise, the following are ten of the most common types of premises liability claims:

1. Trip and Falls

There are many scenarios that can lead to trip and fall accidents — and they can happen anywhere. These accidents arise when there is a defect in the surface of a walkway or an object protrudes, that causes the victim’s foot to get caught. Potholes, uneven surfaces, exposed wires, and objects left where people usually walk are all potential trip and fall hazards. If a property owner fails to place proper warning signage or remedy the dangerous condition, they could be held liable for any injuries caused by their failure to do so.

2. Slip and Falls

Not to be confused with trip and falls, slip and fall accidents involve a victim losing their footing due to a substance on the floor. Milk spills in grocery stores, uncleaned floor oil, grease at gas stations, and beverage spills at restaurants are all examples of ways in which premises liability claims can arise. While owners must ensure that reported spills are marked with a warning sign or cleaned up, they can also be held responsible for accidents if they should have known about the condition through reasonable inspections of the property.

3. Defective Sidewalk Accidents

Most people don’t think very much about the sidewalk or look down when they walk, as they reasonably think these walkways will be safe for use. But there are many dangers that can occur on sidewalks, including cracks, depressions, debris, and tree roots. One of the most common types of premises liability claims in cities, towns, and suburbs include those involving defective sidewalk accidents. A city, town, or property owner may be held liable for injuries that occur due to hazardous sidewalk conditions.

4. Dog Bites

Although most dogs are friendly, every now and again a dog attack can occur. A victim who has been bitten or attacked by someone else’s dog may be able to hold the owner accountable for their negligence if any injuries occurred. Under Washington law, an owner is responsible to pay the victim’s economic damages, regardless of whether the dog had ever bitten anyone before or if they knew of the dog’s potential to attack.

5. Elevator and Escalator Accidents

There are a variety of ways elevator and escalator accidents can happen, including failure to properly maintain, make necessary repairs, or conduct reasonable inspections. If a property owner was aware that an elevator or escalator required repairs and they did not shut it down, a victim might be entitled to pursue a personal injury action for any injuries incurred as a result.

6. Negligent Security

Negligent security refers to the failure to provide reasonable security measures for the safety of others under the circumstances. For instance, landlords are responsible for keeping their rental properties safe for tenants and their guests and taking reasonable measures to protect them from assault and other criminal acts. The level of security that is considered reasonable can vary depending upon the neighborhood and its crime rate.

7. Stairwell Accidents

If they are not properly maintained, stairwells can be extremely dangerous. From broken handrails, chipped steps, and potential collapses, there are many hazards that can lead to accidents on stairs — whether they are in office buildings, apartment complexes, shopping centers, stadiums, or any other location. A victim who was injured due to a stairwell accident may be able to hold the responsible party liable for their damages.

8. Inadequate Lighting

Inadequate lighting is a common cause of trip and falls and slip and falls — if a person cannot see a hazard on the ground, they are much more likely to slip or trip on it. Part of maintaining a building or property in a safe condition is providing proper lighting for those who are lawful visitors on the premises. This includes apartment buildings, condominiums, office buildings, retail stores, parking lots, gas stations, supermarkets, restaurants, and other locations.

9. Falling Objects

Being struck by a falling object can result in serious injuries to the head, neck, spine, and other parts of the body. If a business or property owner failed to take reasonable measures to secure objects stored above, they may be held accountable for injuries that arise as a result. These types of accidents can occur due to falling lumber on construction sites, broken shelving at retail stores, unsecured tools falling from balconies, and many other scenarios.

10. Swimming Pool Accidents

While swimming pools can be a great way to exercise and cool off during the summer, they can also be incredibly dangerous if proper safety precautions are not taken. There are many different types of accidents that can occur in and around swimming pools including slip and falls, accidental drowning, and diving board injuries. Whether an injury arose due to a failure to supervise or maintain the property, an accident victim may be able to bring a premises liability claim against the property owner, municipality (for public pools), product manufacturer, or another responsible party.

Contact an Experienced Washington Personal Injury Attorney

Premises liability claims can be complex. It’s crucial to have a skillful attorney by your side who can help ensure you recover the economic and non-economic damages you have suffered — and hold the responsible party accountable for their negligence. With locations in Burien and Bellevue, Herron Law Office, PLLC is committed to providing reliable representation to premises liability accident victims throughout the state of Washington. We welcome you to contact us for a consultation by calling (425) 600-2580.

Categories: Premises Liability