Property owners are responsible for maintaining the property they own. They are liable for accidents that happen to visitors or guests within their premises. If you have suffered injuries on another person’s property, you may be able to hold them accountable for damages and recover compensation.
Property owners must provide a duty of care
Commercial property owners and private homeowners have an obligation to keep their property safe beyond reasonable doubt and put warning signs if any hazards arise. The property owner should address and repair hazards immediately. Potential property hazards include:
· Foundation cracks or structure settling that lead to uneven flooring
· Wet, sticky or oily floors
· Damaged flooring, i.e., a nail sticking out, worn out wood, sharp edges, potholes
· Inadequate lighting
· Electrocution threats like loose live wires
· Broken glass
· Trash or any materials obstructing the walkway
· Faulty elevators or escalators
· Dangerous staircases with broken handrails
· Insufficient or no security
These hazards are a threat not only to you but to any guest or visitor of the property. Premises liability legally allows a victim to make a claim against the property owner’s negligence.
Premises are made to be broken
Over time, materials like wood, metal, paint, and sand do succumb to wear and tear, which is why property is a luxury and a liability. With that in mind, you should also be aware and considerate of the surroundings. You could have missed a wet floor or a caution sign. In a comparative negligence state like New Mexico, the court can find that both the victim and property owner were negligent, and the latter will only cover a certain part of the damages.
Make sure you get medical attention and inform the owner right away of the accident. If you can, take photos of the accident so you have evidence that proves it was in no way your fault.