If you are injured while visiting someone’s home or yard, you may be wondering if you can sue for damages. Many people are conflicted about suing a friend, neighbor, or family member. However, if you are injured and have medical costs to cover, a lawsuit may be your only option to receive some compensation.
The law requires that all property owners reasonably maintain their property. That means keeping their property in a safe condition and free from hazards that could harm others. If the property owner fails to do so, he or she can be sued for damages. There are some things that you should know, however, before filing a lawsuit.
Premises Liability Laws in California
In California, if you are injured due to a property owner’s negligence, then you can sue for compensatory damages. However, you must be able to prove that negligence occurred. This is done by establishing:
· Duty – did the property owner have a duty to ensure that their property would not harm others?
· Breach of Duty – Did the property owner fail to uphold their duty by allowing a hazard to harm someone.
· Injury – The hazard on the property caused your injuries.
· Causation – The breach of duty is what caused your injuries and resulting in financial losses.
Your Status at the Time of the Injury
You should know that your status at the time of the injury could impact your ability to sue the property owner. Your status refers to your position on the property. Are you a guest, customer, or trespasser? If you are a guest or customer, then the property owner does have a duty of care to keep their property safe for you. If you are a trespasser, then the property owner does not owe you a duty of care.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
If you are injured while on someone else’s property, you may find it helpful to speak with a personal injury lawyer. Premises liability laws are complicated, but a personal injury lawyer can help you protect your rights and pursue compensation if you do, in fact, have an actionable claim. If you need a lawyer for your personal injuries in Los Angeles or Orange County, call our accident attorneys at Guldjian & Fasel today.