Getting hurt on someone else’s property is a section of law called “premises liability.” This section of laws covers dangerous conditions and people who have suffered injuries as a result. Slip and falls, dog bites, and a wide range of other mishaps that can occur on someone’s property as a result of negligence fall under this law. Here, we’ll discuss New York City premises liability and what that means for you if you’re ever injured.
Premises liability accidents can happen anywhere, from retail shops to office and apartment buildings, as well as private homes. Broken stairs, missing handrails, uneven floors, torn or uneven carpet or other flooring, icy or wet surfaces, inadequate lighting, and other hazardous conditions can cause slip and falls as well as other serious injuries. Broken bones, spine and neck injuries, soft tissue damage and even traumatic brain injuries can result from unsafe conditions on a premises.
The Elements of Premises Liability
Property owners, managers and employees have a duty of care to make sure that visitors to a home or business are safe from potential hazards. If there is one, they are under an obligation to take some kind of corrective action within a reasonable amount of time. Until that point, they are required to post some kind of warning that the hazard exists, such as an orange safety cone around water spills.
Should the manager, owner or employee know about the hazard and fail to take corrective action and/or warn visitors they can be held liable for any injuries sustained because of the hazard.
Proving Premises Negligence
In order to prove your case, you’ll be required to show that:
- You were lawfully on the property as a customer, guest, or invitee, or
- You were trespassing in full view of the manager/owner/employee, and they knew you were there
- The property owner knew about the unsafe condition, or should have known, and failed to do anything about it, improperly repaired it, or failed to warn others about the condition (such as “cones” or other marking device)
- The negligence of the unsafe condition caused your injuries.
Were You Trespassing?
If you are trespassing, the owner does not owe you the same duty of care. If you’re injured while trespassing, the owner is not liable, you will not be able to recover damages as a result. The exception is if an owner/manager/employee is fully aware that you are trespassing and does nothing to dissuade you, they are still liable for your injuries as if you were there lawfully.
The “attractive nuisance doctrine” covers children who wander in. If the property has an “attractive nuisance,” such as a pool that isn’t fenced in or otherwise blocked off, and children are not protected from its dangers, the owner/manager can be held liable even if they are not aware of the child’s presence.
Statute Of Limitations
New York allows three years from the date of the accident to file a claim and/or a lawsuit. In cases against the government, such as a building or a park, you are limited to 90 days from the date of the accident to file a claim and one year to file a lawsuit. That’s why it’s important to talk to an East Village personal injury attorney as soon as you can.
NYC’s Own Premises Liability Law Firm
Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier has represented hundreds of victims who were injured due to someone’s negligence, and helped them obtain compensation. Call us at (212) 777-9400 (or use our online contact form.) As a family-owned East Village personal injury law firm experienced in New York City premises liability law, we have more than 26 years of experience helping people just like you. Our contingency fee arrangement means we won’t get paid until you do, whether we settle your case in or out of court.