One of the nice things about Webster Groves is the strong sense of community we all enjoy. But even if you know a property owner well, there is always a risk that an unaddressed hazard on their land or property might cause you serious harm.
This risk can be even greater when visiting commercial property owned by people or corporations that don’t have close personal relationships with their customers.
Many people struggle with the idea of holding their friends or neighbors accountable for injuries that happen on their property. The truth is that often the only way to be compensated for all of the damages you have a legal right to receive is to go to court. It is almost always the home or property owner’s insurance company that pays the claim. Even if the property owner wants you to be compensated, insurance companies are notorious for trying to minimize their payouts.
If you suffered an injury on someone else’s property, talk to a Webster Groves premises liability lawyer at OnderLaw. We know what damages you are entitled to receive, and we know how to make sure your rights are preserved.
When you’ve been injured, the last thing you need to worry about is being manipulated by what appears to be friendly and helpful representatives. Insurance companies often offer you minimal compensation, not including subjective or long-term damages like pain and suffering or ongoing therapy you are entitled to receive. They do all they can to make you think they are on your side, but their friendliness turns off immediately when you begin asking for what you deserve.
When an insurance company knows you are not represented by an attorney, they won’t put their best foot forward when offering you compensation. They count on the fact that you likely don’t know your rights. Almost always, attorneys are able to negotiate more reasonable and realistic compensation by asking for everything you are entitled to receive.
Another true but unfair fact is that, once a claim is filed, insurance companies and other defendants commonly blame you for all or part of your injury. Without an attorney who knows how to stand up for you in court, your compensation may very well be limited.
Property owners have an obligation to maintain their land in reasonably safe conditions to protect visitors from preventable accidents. However, the extent of this obligation depends on why each visitor is there.
Invitees are people visiting lawfully for the property owner’s benefit, while licensees are those legally visiting for their own benefit. In Missouri, property owners owe both invitees and licensees the same duty to provide advance warning of all known hazards. They also must use “ordinary care” in inspecting their property for hazards and fixing those they find within a reasonable amount of time. This can mean repairing broken handrails, fixing dangerous concrete work, or ensuring the safety of decks, balconies, floors, or other areas.
Property owners generally owe no such duty to warn or protect people unlawfully trespassing on their land. However, they cannot knowingly and intentionally harm trespassers, such as by setting traps intended to discourage trespassing. A Webster Groves attorney can explain how trespassing on a property may affect your options after a property accident.
After an accident, you and your local attorney must prove the following to hold the landowner liable for your damages:
Dangerous conditions can include structural problems on private property like cracked floor tiles or broken light fixtures. It can also include a failure to sufficiently reduce the risk of criminal actions like robbery or assault, causing physical harm to lawful visitors.
OnderLaw’s Webster Groves lawyers can further explain what scenarios may warrant a premises liability claim during a consultation.
Holding a reckless or careless property owner responsible for injuries you suffered on their property can be challenging. Trying to bring a lawsuit without assistance from a skilled legal professional can be a recipe for disaster.
Help is available from our Webster Groves premises liability lawyers who understand what you are going through and how to support you in these difficult times. At OnderLaw, we take on more than just cases—we take on causes. Call today to schedule a meeting with a dedicated attorney and discuss your situation with a team who truly cares.