Defective Property Conditions
Nobody expects to be hurt while visiting property to which they are invited. However, injuries often arise out of defective property conditions. Landowners and occupiers in Texas have a duty to keep the premises that are under their control in a safe condition. They must also inspect the premises and warn of concealed hazards that they know or should know about. Hazards may include broken stairs, loose railings, improperly constructed balconies, unstable surfaces, and more. At Feizy Law Office, our premises liability lawyers can help people in the Dallas area seek compensation for injuries they suffer as a result of a property defect.Defective Property Conditions Can Cause Serious Harm
Your status on a particular piece of property often affects whether you can recover compensation for a defective property condition. Visitors include invitees, licensees, and trespassers. The highest duty is owed to invitees, who come onto property with the consent of the owner and for a mutual benefit linked to the owner’s business.
For example, if you are eating at a restaurant, you come to buy food and this provides a benefit to you and the restaurant. The restaurant must use ordinary care to make the property reasonably safe. If there is a broken rail in the restaurant bathroom that the restaurant should have seen and repaired or warned you about in the exercise of ordinary care, and the rail falls down and hits you, you likely have a premises liability claim.
In contrast, a licensee is somebody who enters property with express or implied permission for his or her benefit. The owner or occupier will need to warn the licensee of a hidden property defect that he or she actually knows about, but not those he or she should have known about. Meanwhile, an owner or occupier must avoid intentionally or willfully hurting a trespasser. For example, the occupier of a house cannot set up harmful traps that could cause someone an injury.
Special rules often apply when the government owns the property with a defect and you are injured on it. Generally, governmental entities in Texas are immune from liability or lawsuits arising from accidents on their property unless the immunity is waived. The Texas Tort Claims Act provides exceptions to governmental immunity for causes of action such as premises liability under Sec. 101.021. The duty owed still depends on your status on the property. If you are paying for use of the government property, such as a facility rental for a party, you are an invitee. The government entity that owns the land owes you a duty in that case to use ordinary care to reduce or eliminate an unreasonable risk that is created by a property defect it knew or should have known about.Seek Compensation for Injuries with the Assistance of a Dallas Lawyer
Premises liability cases are challenging. If you have been involved in an accident caused by a defective property condition in Dallas or the surrounding cities, you can consult an injury attorney at Feizy Law Office. We understand how to investigate whether a property owner knew or should have known about a defect on the premises. We also can consult the appropriate experts and present a case in a persuasive manner. Call us at (214) 651-8686 or set up a meeting via our online form. We represent accident victims in Arlington, Fort Worth, Garland, Irving, and Plano, among other Texas cities.