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Reasons Property Owners Can be Liable for Fall Injuries

Posted on behalf of Stephens, Anderson & Cummings on Nov 29, 2018 in Slip & Fall Accidents

stepping on a spillProperty owners are legally obligated to take reasonable precautions to prevent guests and visitors from being injured by dangerous hazards on their property. This includes providing adequate warning or removing hazards that could cause a guest on the property to be injured in a slip and fall accident.

If you or someone you love has been injured after slipping or tripping and falling on another’s property, you may be entitled to compensation.

The experienced Fort Worth slip and fall accident attorneys at Stephens, Anderson & Cummings are ready to assist you with your slip and fall accident claim. We can help you determine if the property owner is legally responsible for your accident and whether you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.

What Was Your Legal Status on the Property?

In Texas, property owners are obligated to ensure the safety of others on their property depends on the visitor’s reason for entering the premises. There are three legal statuses for visitors on private property:

  • Invitee: An invitee is someone who is invited to be on the property, usually for the financial benefit of the property owner. An example of an invitee would be a maintenance worker or customer at a restaurant. Property owners are legally required to inspect the premises for unreasonably dangerous conditions and to eliminate them or warn invitees about the hazard to avoid causing them injury.
  • Licensee: A licensee is someone who has legal permission to enter the property, usually for the benefit of someone other than the property’s owner. This may include a social guest, such as a friend or family member, visiting the property. The owner of the property has a legal duty to warn the licensee of known dangers on the property, but is not required to inspect the premises for hazards.
  • Trespasser: A trespasser is someone who illegally enters the property without the owner’s permission. The only duty that a property owner owes a trespasser is not to intentionally harm him or her.

What Are Reasonable Steps for Preventing Slips and Falls?

There are several steps that property owners can take to reduce the likelihood of a slip and fall accident. Some steps may include:

  • Keeping floors clean and clear: Property owners can minimize slip or trip and fall accidents by checking the floor for spills, loose wires, cracks in the pavement, or heavy objects or trash cluttering the ground.
  • Keeping the area well lit: Proper lighting can illuminate areas that may be a common place for people to trip or slip and fall. Stairs, steps or other uneven flooring may not be easy to see without proper lighting.
  • Using warning signs: Property owners are legally required to provide adequate warning to guests and visitors for any known hazard on the premises. If an area cannot immediately be corrected, clear and well-placed signs should warn customers or others of a hazard.
  • Cleaning spills immediately: Property owners should immediately clean spills that cover the floor’s surface. If the spill is in a frequently-visited area, the owner should provide adequate warning.  
  • Searching the property: Property owners should regularly inspect the property for any possible hazards. This should include the property’s floors, facilities and parking lots. 
  • Regularly maintaining and cleaning the property: Businesses should establish procedures for cleaning and maintaining the property. There should be guidelines regarding how often cleaning should occur, using the proper cleaner for the type of floor surface and which tools should be used. Maintenance personnel can keep checklists of when the property was cleaned and floors repaired.

Contact Stephens, Anderson & Cummings to Schedule a Free Consultation

If you were injured on another’s property, you may be entitled to compensation for the injury and financial losses you suffered.

Stephens, Anderson & Cummings’ trusted personal injury lawyers in Fort Worth understand what it takes to prove liability in a slip and fall claim. We will review your accident to determine its cause and whether the property owner had an obligation to keep you safe. If we find that you have a case, we will pursue every option to obtain the full amount of compensation you deserve.

 We work on contingency, so you are not charged any legal fees unless we recover compensation on your behalf.

Call (877) 920-9009 to schedule your free consultation.