Austin Premises Liability Lawyer
If you or your family was hurt because of an owner’s irresponsible actions, an Austin premises liability lawyer may be able to help you make a claim. Businesses and property owners are responsible to maintain property in a way that is safe for others, and may even be held liable.
Owner negligence often leads to serious injuries for visitors, such as broken bones, neck and back injury, burns, and in some tragic cases, traumatic brain injury. Owners may be responsible for personal injuries or wrongful death if their property was unsafely designed, walkways are in disrepair, spills are left where visitors could slip and fall, stairways or handrails are not secure, drowning could occur because pools are left uncovered or without barriers, or they do not take precautions to protect visitors from potentially dangerous pets.
If you suffered serious harm or lost a loved one on premises owned or maintained by someone else, you may be able to make a premises liability claim.
Compensation for Premises Liability Claims in Austin
If you were injured due to a property owner’s negligence, then you could be entitled to claim compensation to cover the cost of:
- Medical expenses
- Lost income if your injuries render you unable to work
- Property damage, such as eyeglasses and jewelry
- Pain and suffering
If you were injured on residential property, you and your attorney will typically negotiate with the resident’s homeowner’s insurance company. That can help you avoid any personal conflicts with the homeowner. It can feel easier to demand money from an insurer than a friend.
Whether you were injured on private or public property, insurance entities might contact you after your accident. It’s best to limit communication with insurance companies and adjusters until you consult with an injury attorney. Insurance companies will use every trick in the book to minimize or outright deny your claim. They might even try to make you assume partial blame. Insurance agencies are businesses, so they want to pay the lowest amount possible. Don’t give them any justifications to cut corners. The best thing you can do for yourself is to consult with one of our experienced Austin premises liability attorneys at Loewy Law Firm.
Common Types of Premises Liability Cases in Austin
Premises liability incidents can occur on both residential and commercial property. In either case, property owners’ negligence leads to devastating accidents and serious injuries. Some common types of premises liability in Austin include:
- Slip and fall accidents – Slip and falls can occur almost anywhere, including on private and public property, wet restaurant floors, and uneven walkways. If a guest, customer, tourist, or employee slips and falls because the property owner neglected to eliminate a known hazard, then the property owner could be held responsible.
- Swimming pool accidents – Serious accidents occur often in and around swimming pools in Austin. They can be especially traumatic when they involve children. Improperly maintained diving boards can endanger users of all ages. Slip and falls can occur around the edge of a pool if the ground is wet. Tragically, accidental drowning can occur if the pool is improperly secured or unsupervised.
- Dog bites – Austin is known for being a dog-friendly city, which makes dog bites another common premises liability accident. If a dog has a history of aggression toward other people and bites a guest because a homeowner failed to take the proper precautions, then the homeowner could be held responsible for dog bite injuries.
- Fires – Fires constitute another type of premises liability accident. If a property owner fails to keep their residence or business safe from fire-related accidents and a fire breaks out, then they could be held liable for any injuries or deaths that result.
- Elevator accidents – Elevator accidents can be caused by defective parts, poor design, poor maintenance, and a host of other issues. That means the fault for related injuries could lie with the property owner, the maintenance company, or the company that manufactured the elevator.
- Amusement and water park accidents. Serious accidents sometimes occur in amusement and water parks in the greater Austin area. If the owner or operators fail to properly maintain and regularly inspect their attractions and an accident occurs, they could be held responsible. Sometimes, proving an amusement park premises liability claim can be more challenging. That’s because there could be multiple at-fault parties, such as the corporations that own the parks, negligent lifeguards, and irresponsible maintenance companies.
Common Premises Liability Injuries
Depending upon the circumstances of the accident, premises liability injuries can be severe and even catastrophic. Some of the common injuries caused by premises liability include:
- Traumatic brain injuries – Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are usually caused by a violent blow to the head. They often occur due to slip and fall accidents. TBIs can include concussions, skull fractures, and brain bleeds. This type of injury can be life-threatening depending upon the severity of the blow. TBI’s can also affect memory, reasoning, emotions, and personality.
- Spinal injuries – Spinal injuries also frequently result from slip and fall accidents and other premises liability accidents. If the spine is damaged badly enough, paralysis can occur below the site of the injury, which can be permanent.
- Bites, scratches, and lacerations – Dog bites can leave puncture wounds, scratches, and lacerations on the skin. The resulting infections and other illnesses can be severe.
- Broken or fractured bones – Broken or fractured bones result from many types of premises liability accidents, especially slips, trips, and falls. These injuries can require multiple surgeries and extensive physical therapy for a full recovery.
- Burns – Fires and exposure to other toxic substances can cause burns to the skin, which can lead to permanent disfigurement.
- Drowning – Accidental drowning can occur when young children access improperly secured and unsupervised swimming pools. Property owners who fail to install barriers or provide adequate supervision can be held responsible for accidental drowning.
Regarding Cases of Inadequate Security
One thing that needs to be addressed in premises liability cases is whether or not the actions of the property owner assisted in any criminal activity. In some cases, while the property owner did not actually cause the crime to occur, they can still be held partially responsible. For example, say a person is in the parking lot of a hotel when they are assaulted. The hotel did not have any sort of security presence – no patrols, security cameras, or any form of fencing. While owners and management cannot be held wholly responsible for any injuries that were sustained as a result of the assault, they may be held partially liable.
Inadequate security refers to any negligence on behalf of owners and managers to provide adequate safety measures for all visitors to their premises – this could be a hotel, apartment complex, grocery store, strip mall or even an office building. If they failed to warn their tenants of an increase in criminal activity, failed to provide proper security measures they might be held liable. They could also be held liable for situations including the failure to provide adequate lighting, install security cameras or have fences with working locks.
At our firm, we are able to step up to fight for the legal rights of those who have been victimized in an accident caused by inadequate security. If you have reason to believe that your injuries have been caused by the negligence of a property owner in providing adequate safety measures, do not hesitate to get the involvement of a member of our firm immediately. We know the right questions to ask and will do everything that we can to help you protect your best interests. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.
What Is Necessary to File a Premises Liability Claim?
Premises liabilities cases are often very complicated, but knowledgeable legal counsel from an Austin premises liability lawyer can provide the guidance and strategy necessary for success.
In order to file a premises liability claim, these elements must be proven:
- The plaintiff had permission to be on the premises: It must be proven that the plaintiff had a right to be on the property by either invitation or license. There is no case if the plaintiff was trespassing.
- The premises are in the defendant’s possession: It must be proven that the defendant was in control of the property where the accident occurred.
- The injury was due to negligence or some other wrongful act by the defendant: Often the most important element of the case, it must be proven that the defendant failed to maintain the property in a way that promoted safety to all visitors.
What To Do After a Premises Liability Accident
Premises liability accidents can be overwhelming, especially if you sustain serious injuries. Regardless of what happened, there are a few steps you should take after an accident to ensure that you can demand the compensation you deserve.
- Seek medical attention. The first thing you should do after an accident occurs is get evaluated by a medical professional. Some injuries are not immediately apparent, like hematomas, so your doctor might notice an issue that you haven’t. Make sure your doctor describes your injuries in detail in their report and keep anything they give you, including bills.
- Take photos of the scene. If you’re able to, take photos of the scene and of any injuries that are apparent in the moments after the accident. Photos and video footage can provide strong evidence that supports your claim for compensation from the negligent property owner that hurt you.
- Report the accident. Report the accident to the appropriate authority. If you were on residential property, alert the owner or tenant. If the person owns the property, you might also alert their homeowner’s association. If you were on commercial property, such as a restaurant or a store, then tell the appropriate manager or owner so that they create an incident report.
- Gather medical records. Collect all of your medical documents so that you have a comprehensive record of your accident-related expenses. This includes medical bills for any procedures or treatments you have undergone, prescription labels, physical therapy records, and other expenses related to your recovery.
- Consult with an attorney. An experienced premises liability attorney can help you investigate the accident, collect evidence, interview any witnesses of the accident, and negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
Contact an Austin Premises Liability Lawyer Today
If you were injured because of a property owner’s negligence, the Loewy Law Firm may be able to help you secure compensation. We have assisted countless clients with personal injury cases through the use of professional skill and compassion for the victims of preventable accidents. The damage sustained in accidents caused by the wrongful actions of others can be devastating, but our firm can help you put your life back together and fight for justice.
Many property owners charged with premise negligence hire fancy and expensive lawyers to ensure that they do not have to take responsibility, so it is imperative that you choose the expertise of a powerful litigator and aggressive advocate. You do not need to suffer with loss, pain, and medical bills any longer; call us today to discuss your case.