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When injuries result from the negligence of a property owner or site manager in Los Angeles, victims are encouraged to consult with a premises liability attorney to protect their legal rights. If you or someone you love fell, slipped or were otherwise hurt on another’s property that was poorly maintained, you may be entitled to monetary damages under California premises liability law.

California premises liability law

Boasting decades of litigation experience, The Salamati Law Firm is uniquely qualified to handle a wide range of premises liability claims, and will work diligently on your behalf to secure a favorable settlement or court award.

Premises liability is based on general principles of negligence, which is determined by the duty the property owner or manager owes guests to ensure their safety. This type of personal injury litigation isn’t limited to “slip and fall accidents,” though many lawsuits center on this common cause of action.

California business and property owners have a legal obligation to keep their premises safe and free of potential hazards for patrons and visitors. If this essential duty is overlooked and someone is injured as a result, the owner may be found negligent and liable for ensuing damages.

Attorney Sean F. Salamati has been instrumental is obtaining seven-figure recoveries on behalf of his clients, and can help you determine whether you have grounds for filing a premises liability lawsuit.

Slip and fall accidents

Slip and fall accidents account for thousands of fatalities every year, and are one of the leading causes of unintentional deaths in the U.S., according to the National Security Council. The Los Angeles Times reports that some three million Americans are injured by falls every year, with more than 14,000 of these accidents resulting in death.

The bottom line is that property owners have a responsibility to protect you, whether you are visiting an apartment complex, a restaurant, a shopping mall, or a movie theater. Shirking this obligation often leads to serious injury, loss of income and extended rehabilitation for the victim.

Accidental falls can happen in any number of locales, including:

  • Sidewalks
  • Stairwells
  • Driveways
  • Parking lots
  • Curbs
  • Escalators
  • Entrances

An uneven or cracked sidewalk can cause a trip and fall, as can debris left in a supermarket aisle. Wobbly or broken handrails on staircases pose additional threats of a terrifying tumble.

Examples of negligent property maintenance leading to a slip, trip and fall include:

  • Loose carpeting or tile
  • Uneven sidewalk or surface
  • Cluttered walkways or aisles
  • Highly polished floors
  • Bunched rugs or carpeting
  • Wet or icy floors
  • Errant electrical cords
  • Faulty railings
  • Unmarked hazards or spills
  • Cracked, broken or uneven steps

Sidewalk falls and stair case accidents commonly leave victims with incapacitating injuries — especially among our senior residents. Broken bones, spinal cord trauma, concussions, back and neck injury and traumatic head injuries require costly medical care and can severely impact the welfare and financial security of victims.

Our experienced legal team offers attentive and thorough support as we strive to obtain maximum compensation for your medical and hospital bills, lost income, emotional distress, disability and other related losses.

Los Angeles premises liability lawyers

In addition to litigating trip and fall cases in the greater Los Angeles area, The Salamati Law Firm accepts premises liability claims arising from:

  • Dog bites or attacks that occur on another’s property
  • Elevator and escalator accidents stemming from inattentive maintenance or lack of repairs
  • Building injuries caused by unsafe conditions
  • Amusement park injuries resulting from negligent maintenance
  • Physical assaults in places without adequate security
  • Preventable swimming pool injuries involving lack of signage or safety equipment

Basis for a premises liability lawsuit

Though property owners are obliged under California law to keep their premises safe, they do not owe the same duty to everyone. In determining liability in these actions, the decisive factors are ownership, possession and control of the premises. Generally speaking, the owner or lessor of a property must exercise ordinary care in the maintenance or management of the grounds in order to prevent an unreasonable risk of injury.

This may include routine property inspections, equipment maintenance and repairs and other measures to ensure that potentially dangerous conditions are not present, and that visitors have adequate warnings to ensure their safety. For example, a grocery store may inspect aisles every hour to establish a record of ordinary care.

However, California courts will generally rule in favor of the defendant in premises liability lawsuits where the plaintiff’s injury was caused by a hazard that was foreseeable and obvious. Holcomb v. Burns was a 1960 case in which a plaintiff tripped and fell over a lawnmower leaning against a wall. The jury found the defendant was not found responsible because the object was in plain view, and the plaintiff admitted seeing it before she fell.

It’s relevant to note that landowners may be offered some protections under California Civil Code Section 846, which stipulates that owners of “real property” are not under obligation to keep their grounds safe for use by others for recreational purposes, nor are they required to give warning of unsafe conditions. Exceptions are made if there was an express invitation to the person who was injured, versus merely allowing someone to come on the premises.

Contact The Salamati Law Firm

Premises liability litigation can be complex in nature, which is why it’s crucial to choose an advocate wisely. If you were injured or lost a loved one because of dangerous property conditions and would like to explore your legal options, contact The Salamati Law firm to arrange a free case review today.

Call 1-800-957-9898 to speak with a premises liability attorney Los Angeles trusts.

Premises liability resources:

  1. Justia, California Civil Jury Instructions, Premises Liability – Essential Factual Elements http://www.justia.com/trials-litigation/docs/caci/1000/1000.html
  2. The Burbank Leader, Burbank man found electrocuted to death in L.A. high-rise http://www.burbankleader.com/news/tn-blr-burbank-man-found-electrocuted-to-death-in-l-a-high-rise-20150817,0,573809.story