Were you injured as a result of the dangerous conditions on someone else’s property? Are you struggling to pay medical bills, or wondering you’ll cope without a steady income as you recover? If so, contact OnderLaw, LLC and talk to an experienced Newport Beach personal injury lawyer about your options.
A premises liability case involves holding a property owner liable for the unsafe conditions on their property or their failure to replace, repair, or provide a warning to guests of any hazards.
Property owners should take measures to ensure there aren’t any dangers on their premises. If they don’t perform routine maintenance, or address a trip hazard, or place a warning sign next to a wet floor, they could be financially responsible for the injured party’s losses.
The legal team at OnderLaw, LLC has been representing clients since 2002. Our commitment to each case and our successful results have earned us recognition from a number of legal organizations, such as the Multi-Million and Million Dollar Advocates Forum and The National Trial Lawyers.
To find out more or meet with one of our Newport Beach premises liability lawyers for a free consultation, call OnderLaw, LLC at (314) 963-9000.
What Is Premises Liability?
Anyone who leases, occupies, owns, or controls a location may be considered negligent if they don’t take the following actions:
- Use reasonable care in keeping their property safe; or
- Use reasonable care to look for hazards and promptly repair or replace them or provide adequate warning to guests about anything that could cause injury.
Determining “reasonable care” can be a challenge, but the court will typically use the following factors in making their decision:
- Location of the property
- Likelihood of a person visiting
- Chance of injury occurring
- Potential severity of the injury
- Whether the owner knew or should have known about the unsafe conditions
- Difficulty of preventing the risk of injury
- Degree of control the owner had over the unsafe condition
The most common types of premises liability cases include:
- Swimming pool accidents
- Dog and animal bites
- Missing or damaged lighting
- Uneven or cracked walkways and sidewalks
- Negligent security
- Poor maintenance
- Exposure to toxic substances
- Escalator and elevator accidents
- Slippery or wet flooring
- Unsecured or falling objects
- Hazardous items on the floor
- Slip/trip and falls
- Defective stairways
- Safety code violations
There are three classifications of visitors to someone’s property. Each one could affect how the owner should treat you when it comes to the safety of their property. However, liability does not depend on these classifications.
Invitees visit the premises for mutual benefit with the owner’s knowledge. The owner must repair any damage or warn the invitee of the potential risk it causes.
Licensees have consent from the owner to enter the property. The owner must provide adequate warning of hazards that could lead to an injury.
Trespassers don’t have permission to enter the premises but do so anyway. The owner has no obligation to warn a trespasser of dangerous conditions but must take precautions to avoid causing physical harm.
Take Immediate Legal Action After a Premises Liability Accident
If you get hurt on another person’s property, whether commercial or private, you should start preparing your case immediately. Gather evidence at the scene, begin medical treatment, and hire an experienced Newport Beach premises liability attorney. The sooner you begin, the sooner you can pursue compensation for your losses.
Step 1 – Report the incident to the owner or someone in management. Complete an incident report and request a copy. Make sure you read it thoroughly to ensure you do not sign away your rights to pursue legal action.
If necessary, call 911 and wait for an officer to arrive and investigate. They will ask you what happened, speak to witnesses, and gather evidence from the scene.
Step 2 – Talk to anyone who saw the incident occur and write down their names and phone numbers.
Step 3 – Take photos of the accident scene, such as property damage, hazards, or the dangerous condition that caused your injury.
Step 4 – Seek medical treatment after completing the steps above. Do not wait to attend your first doctor’s appointment, and never allow significant time to pass between appointments. When a claimant has a gap in treatment, the insurance company may use it to deny or minimize your claim. They may say it is proof that you aren’t as seriously injured as you stated.
Step 5 – Keep evidence. Don’t throw out anything related to the case. If you cracked your cell phone in the fall, you should keep it as evidence of property damage costs. Maintain records of your treatment, expenses, and other relevant documentation.
Step 6 – Hire a lawyer to gather evidence and build a solid case on your behalf.
When you hire OnderLaw, LLC, we will start working on your case and determine the best legal option available. Many premises liability cases begin with an insurance claim, and if the insurance company doesn’t offer an adequate settlement amount, we can move forward with a lawsuit. However, how we handle your case will depend on various factors.
Even though there isn’t a strict deadline for filing a claim, many insurance companies ask that you initiate the process “promptly.” It is also a good idea to file immediately, so you have enough time to sue the owner if necessary. Lawsuits require complying with a strict filing deadline, and if it passes before you file, you could lose your right to compensation.
Even if your injury seems minor, you might be entitled to a settlement from an insurance claim. You should still seek legal representation and allow us to investigate to determine if you may be eligible for compensation for the trauma you experienced.
Compensation You Could Pursue After a Premises Liability Accident
Accident victims often incur damages, or losses, after getting hurt on another person’s property. When you’re seeking medical treatment, unable to return to work, and suffering from the psychological effects of the incident, you should be entitled to compensation for those damages. They include actual expenses and intangible losses, such as:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Disfigurement or disability
- Out of pocket expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress
You could also pursue punitive damages if you choose to file a lawsuit against the property owner, employee, or another party responsible for your injury. Punitive damages are a form of punishment against the wrongdoer, aimed at deterring similar behavior from occurring in the future.
Juries rarely award punitive damages in civil lawsuits unless the plaintiff can provide clear and convincing evidence that the defendant acted with fraud, malice, or intent to oppress.
How OnderLaw, LLC Can Help With Your Case
We don’t want you to suffer the burden of handling a complicated legal case. We know you’re already dealing with enough stress in your life. When you hire us, we will take over and complete each step of the process while you’re attending appointments and healing from your injuries. We will:
Investigate. The first thing we will do is thoroughly investigate the incident. We will determine the cause, who was at fault, and work to obtain crucial evidence that proves the property’s dangerous conditions led to your injury.
Track down witnesses. We will work to locate witnesses and get their statements. When eyewitnesses can confirm what happened, that could strengthen the case.
Review the damages. We will review your losses and try to maximize the value of your case. We will determine an amount that compensates you for your expenses and any physical or mental pain you experienced.
Notify the owner of the claim. We will notify the property owner that we intend to pursue legal action against them. In the letter, we will ask that they refrain from disposing of evidence and provide us with their liability insurance information.
File the injury claim. After receiving the insurance company name and policy number, we will file the injury claim.
Negotiate settlement. When the time comes for settlement negotiations, we will aggressively pursue the maximum compensation you deserve.
File a lawsuit. If we can’t settle your case for an amount we believe is fair for your damages, we will file suit against the insurance company and property owner.
OnderLaw, LLC Legal Fees and Costs
Our Newport Beach premises liability attorneys know the financial hardships you might face while trying to recover. To save you from any additional burden, we take premises liability cases on contingency.
That means that we don’t charge any upfront fees to represent you in your case. We don’t get paid unless you get paid. If we can secure an insurance settlement or favorable jury verdict, our legal fees will come out of your compensation. If we lose, you won’t have to pay.
Contact Us Today
OnderLaw, LLC will provide compassionate and dependable legal services during this difficult time. You can rely on our team to guide you through the complex legal process and help you make informed decisions about your case.
We know how serious this matter is and will handle it as such, but we also recognize when our clients need a friend. We will be there for you when you need us and provide the support you need to recover and move forward with your life.
If you suffered injuries from the unsafe conditions on someone’s property, call us at (314) 963-9000 for a free consultation with one of our Newport Beach premises liability lawyers. We will work tirelessly to hold the property owner accountable for their actions and fight for the compensation you rightfully deserve.