If you visit a private property, whether it is a commercial or residential property, you have the right to expect that the property owner has maintained reasonably safe premises. However, if you suffer a slip and fall or other injury, you need to know California premises liability laws and how they can apply to your recovery efforts.
When a property owner is responsible for your recent slip and fall, you have the right to seek accountability and compensation for the damages you suffered. A premises liability lawyer in Sacramento, CA, is the ideal resource to consult in this situation. They can help gather the evidence needed to make your case and assist you in maximizing your compensation.
Understanding Premises Liability Laws
If you believe a property owner is responsible for your recent slip and fall injury or any similar incident, it is vital to understand the state’s premises liability laws and how they will apply to your case. First, you must prove that you were legally present on the defendant’s property. You cannot claim compensation if you intruded or trespassed on private property without the property owner’s express or implied permission to enter their property.
A Claimant Needs to Show That They Were Legally on the Property
Once you establish legal presence on the property, you must then prove the property owner knew or reasonably should have known about the hazard that caused your injury. This means that the safety hazard was a foreseeable issue, but the property owner did not fix it, post a warning sign, or provide any verbal warning about the hazard before it could cause an injury.
After meeting these prerequisites, your premises liability claim will unfold the same way as any other personal injury claim. You will need to show proof of the full extent of your damages and prove that they resulted directly from the incident. Under the state’s personal injury statutes, a plaintiff has the right to seek compensation for:
- Property losses, if the defendant’s actions resulted in the loss of any of the plaintiff’s personal property.
- Medical expenses. The defendant responsible for your injury is liable for the full extent of medical care you require to reach maximum medical improvement from your injuries.
- Lost wages. When you are unable to work following a personal injury, the defendant is liable for the income you cannot earn during your recovery period.
- Lost future earning potential. If you suffered a serious injury that has limited your ability to work in the future, the defendant is also responsible for your diminished earning power.
- Pain and suffering. California law allows a personal injury plaintiff to claim as much as they believe to be appropriate to reflect the severity of their condition. There is no limit on pain and suffering compensation in premises liability claims under the law.
Ultimately, you could be entitled to claim more compensation than you may have initially expected if you have the right attorney handling your case. A premises liability claim may seem straightforward at first, but there is always a chance for unexpected variables to arise and complicate any personal injury claim. Legal counsel you can trust will be an invaluable asset no matter what your claim entails.
Q: How Do You Prove Fault in a Premises Liability Claim?
A: Success with your premises liability claim hinges on your ability to prove the defendant failed to maintain reasonably safe premises. You must also prove that you were legally present on their property when your injury occurred. Your attorney can help secure evidence and witness testimony to support your case and will be invaluable for the help they can provide in proving the extent of your claimable damages.
Q: What Is the Statute of Limitations for Premises Liability?
A: The statute of limitations is the time limit in which you must file a civil claim for damages. A premises liability claim is a form of personal injury claim, and the statute of limitations for personal injury cases in the state is two years. This time limit starts on the date your injury occurred, and failure to file your claim in this time means losing your chance to recover your damages.
Q: What Happens if a Plaintiff is Partially at Fault for Their Slip and Fall?
A: California is a pure comparative fault state, meaning it is possible for a plaintiff to bear partial liability for their claimed damages and still recover compensation. Whatever percentage of fault a plaintiff holds is deducted from their final case award. For example, if they are 25% at fault, they will only receive 75% of the total compensation claimed from the defendant.
Q: What Happens if a Slip and Fall Causes a Fatal Injury?
A: If you have lost a loved one in a fatal slip and fall accident in Sacramento, you likely have grounds to file a wrongful death claim. This claim effectively replaces the personal injury claim they could have filed if they had survived. You will need an experienced attorney’s help to assist you in building your case and identifying all the various damages you can seek from the defendant.
Q: How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Premises Liability Attorney?
A: The majority of personal injury attorneys operate on contingency. This means that a client does not pay upfront or ongoing fees for their attorney’s representation. Instead, the attorney takes a percentage of the total compensation won from the defendant if and when they win the client’s case. If the attorney cannot obtain compensation for their client, the client does not owe any fees to the attorney.
The team at Kreeger Law Firm is ready to provide the guidance and support you need after a slip and fall injury in Sacramento. To get the answers you need to your most pressing legal questions about the premises liability laws of the state, contact our firm today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can assist with your recovery.