Protect Yourself From Slip And Fall Accident Lawsuits In Los Angeles
Are Lawsuits for Slip and Fall Accidents Authorized in California?
Under California law, all property managers and owners are required to keep their premises safe for occupants, guests, and customers as well as to issue any necessary warnings. If they are unable or fail to do so, it is considered negligence on their part.
Can a City, County, or Other Public Agency be Sued for a Slip and Fall?
Cities, counties, and other organizations are expected to maintain the safety of their buildings, playgrounds, parks, streets, and landscaping, including trees, bushes, and flowers on public property.
Mass transit, public schools, sanitation and water districts, fire and police departments, public hospitals, and state agencies are just a few examples of public organizations.
Governmental entities may be found accountable and obligated to pay damages if they fail to keep their properties free from hazards and a significant injury arises.
Two crucial points regarding slip and fall claims against the government:
- The statute of limitations in California is incredibly constrained. If you don’t make a claim within six months after the injury, you risk losing the ability to seek compensation.
- Many California towns and counties (although not all) have rules requiring the owner of a property, next to a sidewalk, to keep it in a safe condition. The public entity has to maintain the safety of any nearby landowners who are public entities.
What Evidence is Needed to Hold a Property Owner Liable in a Slip and Fall Injury Case?
No matter how severe the injury, a person cannot sue the property owner for damages simply because they fell and hurt themselves on someone else’s land. It is the injured party’s responsibility to provide evidence of the following:
- The property in which the plaintiff (victim) was hurt—was owned, occupied, and under the defendant’s control.
- The usage or upkeep of the property by the defendant was careless.
- The defendant’s negligence significantly influenced the plaintiff’s injury.
- When a property owner fails to exercise due care under the circumstances, it is considered carelessness and results in a person becoming hurt on the property.
For example, slip and fall accidents are common in grocery and convenience stores. If a customer falls on the wet floor after another customer’s spill, there is usually no foundation for a premises liability case against the supermarket because the manager was most likely unaware of the dangerous condition or had no opportunity to fix it.
However, if a store employee did not act reasonably under the circumstances that they were made aware of the hazard and did not warn others or try to correct it, then based on their negligence, there would be a strong case for filing a lawsuit against the supermarket itself.
Does The Property Owner Need To Be Aware Of The Hazardous Conditions To Be Sued?
In some instances, the evidence blatantly demonstrates that the property owner knew about the hazardous condition but chose not to remedy it. In other situations, the property owner will assert that they were unaware of the danger. However, even if accurate, this does not provide a complete defense.
Property owners must check on their property or take other steps to learn about its status. They are also required to take reasonable precautions to identify any harmful circumstances and to fix, replace, or adequately warn of anything that could be expected to cause harm to others.
Even failing to take reasonable precautions to identify dangerous situations on the property and make necessary repairs, replacements, or adequate warnings of anything that might reasonably be expected to damage others could result in them being found negligent.
Our attorneys are experienced and have successfully represented many clients against supermarkets and property owners in California. We have helped many recover fair settlements. If you or a loved one have been injured in a slip and fall accident, contact us today.