Premises Liability FAQs

Whether you are a guest at someone’s home or conducting business on a commercial property, you shouldn’t have to worry about dangerous conditions that could cause you serious injuries.

At Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles, our highly respected South Florida premises liability lawyers are dedicated to pursuing full and fair compensation for people who have been harmed due to dangerous conditions on someone else’s property. We have more than 30 years of experience fighting for the rights of clients who have been injured due to slip-and-falls, pool accidents, dog attacks, and other traumatic events that could and should have been prevented.

Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation case consultation. You may also find answers to some of your initial questions below.

What Is Premises Liability?

Florida’s premises liability law is intended to protect people from dangerous conditions on private and public property. If you have been injured on someone else’s property, you may be able to pursue compensation if you can prove:

  • The property owner owed a duty of care to you. This typically means you were on the property as an “invitee” or “licensee.” Invitees are people who are invited onto the premises for business reasons, such as a shopper in a store. Licensees are welcomed onto the premises for private purposes, such as guests at a house party.
  • The property owner breached that duty. The duty of care is breached if the owner knew or should have known about dangerous conditions on the property but did not take reasonable precautions to protect you.

In any case involving premises liability, you need a skilled attorney on your side who understands the complexities of Florida law and can build a strong case for compensation. Contact us today to discuss how we can help you.

What Are Some of the Common Types of Premises Liability Claims?

Premises liability claims can involve a wide range of dangerous situations. Some of the common claims our attorneys handle involve:

Whether you have been injured due to one of the conditions above or another danger on someone else’s property, you should know your rights. Schedule a free consultation now to learn what types of compensation you may be able to pursue.

Who Could Be Held Responsible in a Premises Liability Claim?

Determining the individual or company responsible for your injury will depend on the circumstances of your case, primarily who was responsible for maintaining the area where you were hurt. Liable parties could include:

  • Property owners
  • Property managers
  • Landlords
  • Homeowners
  • Business owners
  • Tenants

When pursuing a premises liability claim, you will most likely be going through the at-fault party’s insurance company, which will fight fiercely to pay you as little as possible. Our skilled attorneys have extensive experience managing negotiations with insurance companies and demanding maximum compensation for deserving clients.

What Types of Compensation Could I Pursue?

Part of building a strong premises liability claim involves thoroughly evaluating how your injury has affected you and will continue to affect you. Depending on the circumstances of your claim, we may pursue compensation for:

  • Medical bills, including future treatments, medications, and home modifications you may need to cope with your injury
  • Lost income and diminished earning capacity (if you cannot perform the same job you had before you were injured)
  • Damage to your property, such as if you were the victim of a car robbery due to negligent security
  • Physical, emotional, and psychological pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages, which can be awarded in cases involving extreme misconduct by the at-fault party

It is important to have an attorney on your side who will fight for every bit of compensation you deserve to heal from your injury.

What Should I Do if the Insurance Company Offers Me a Settlement?

Never accept an insurance company’s settlement offer without talking to a knowledgeable South Florida personal injury attorney. The insurance company wants to get away with paying you as little as possible. So they may offer you a settlement right off the bat, while you are panicked about mounting bills and unsure about the extent of your injuries.

A good attorney will help you determine what full and fair compensation should be ─ and then fight for it.

What Should I Do if I Was Hurt on Someone Else’s Property?

There are several actions you can take to protect your rights immediately after you are injured on someone else’s property:

  • See a doctor right away.
  • Report the injury to the property owner or manager.
  • Get the names and contact information for any people who witnessed the accident.
  • If you can, take photos of the area where the accident occurred and any relevant details, such as spills or tears in carpet.
  • Save any clothing that may serve as evidence in your case. For example, your shoes may retain residue from a slippery substance that caused you to fall.
  • Talk to a knowledgeable lawyer as soon as possible.

Schedule a free consultation today with the dedicated South Florida premises liability attorneys at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles.

What Should I Do if I Was Injured on Public Property?

Although injuries frequently occur on public property (such as trips on sidewalks), filing a claim against a government entity is more complicated than filing a claim against a company or a private individual. In general, government agencies have “sovereign immunity” from lawsuits. However, there are situations in which a government employee’s negligence leads to injury, making the government agency liable for damages.

If you were injured on public property, you need an attorney who understands the intricacies of Florida law and can help you build a strong claim for compensation.

  • Do I have a claim if unsafe conditions on someone else’s property caused my personal injury?
    • All Florida property owners have a duty to maintain their property in a reasonably safe condition. If the property owner is aware of a dangerous condition, then they have the responsibility to make that condition safe or warn of the dangerous condition. Failure to do so will result in damages being awarded to anyone who is injured as a result of the latent or undisclosed peril.

      In Florida, landowners (and business owners as the case may be) owe duties to visitors on their land in accordance with the visitor’s legal status. If a visitor trespasses upon the land, a landowner owes no duty to provide a reasonably safe environment. However, if the visitor is invited upon the land, the landowner is bound by several unavoidable duties. Suffice it to say, as long as you are not unlawfully trespassing upon its premises, a business owner owes you the duty of maintaining a reasonably safe environment. As the Florida Supreme Court has explained, visitors upon the private property of another, fall into three broad categories: invitees, licensees, or trespassers. See Post v. Lunney, 261 So. 2d 146 (Fla. 1972) . A “licensee” can be considered either a “public” or “business” licensee, depending on whether he is present on the property for a purpose related to the business’ function, i.e., whether the business owner received some type of benefit by the visitor’s presence. Id. at 148. The Florida Bar provides a helpful table explaining each category and the duties owed by landowners to members of those categories. In short, while a landowner must only refrain from willfully harming a trespasser, it owes invitees and invited licensees the duties of: maintaining a reasonably safe premises, inspecting the property for dangerous conditions and either fixing them, or warning its guests as to their existence, and safeguarding its guests against foreseeable crimes committed by third parties. In Florida, such a crime is reasonably foreseeable if the business owner knows of the specific third party’s inclination toward criminal activity. See Hall v. Billy Jack’s, Inc., 458 So. 2d 760 (Fla. 1984) . However, where a novel third party commits a crime, the Florida district courts are divided as to whether a landowner will be held responsible for any harm caused to its patrons as a result of that criminal activity.

      It is important to remember that business owners and landlords are not insurers, and every type of harm suffered on their property does not necessarily give rise to a legal action. However, recognizing the stringent safety requirements that these parties face, law enforcement throughout the United States provides aid to help ensure that such owners satisfy their legal obligations. Every local police department in the country provides security training and/or threat analysis to any property owner, for free. A business owner can call the local police department, and have them give them what is called a security survey. A security survey will outline the business’ security deficiencies, and will often times, illuminate the existence of shortcomings that were previously unbeknownst to the business owner.

      Banks and ATM’s, gas stations, shopping malls, restaurants, bars, nightclubs, parking lots, and apartment buildings are only some of the properties which are often allowed to exist in an unlawfully dangerous state. If you feel that you have suffered harm while upon the property of another, it is imperative that you contact an attorney right away. The experienced negligent security attorneys at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles will help you determine if you can recover for your personal injury.

Schedule a Free Consultation Today

The experienced South Florida premises liability lawyers at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles are committed to helping you pursue the compensation you need to heal and move forward with your life. With offices in West Palm Beach and Port St. Lucie, our firm is poised to serve clients throughout South Florida, and our lawyers are always willing to meet you wherever is most convenient.

Contact us today to schedule a free and confidential claim evaluation.

Testimonials Client Testimonials

  • I was injured at work directly due to poor management decisions. I worked as a lifeguard and a child that was in the care of the day care facility on the campus ran away. He was in immediate danger. I… Shona M.
  • I have recommended Jonathan Levy and his law firm to my friends and one of them became his client. I am truly grateful for everything Jonathan Levy and his team have done on my behalf. He is truly a wonderful attorney. Faithe C.
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  • You might say you were even just doing your job, however, I think it’s essential that you realize how fortunate I am to have such a trusted esteemed attorney in my corner, blessed really. Anonymous
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