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Houston Premises Liability Lawyers

Being injured on someone else’s property is never pleasant, whether it’s a result of a slip-and-fall, tripping over a hazard, or another accident. The area of premises liability provides a way to recover for your injuries if you were hurt on someone else’s property, whether it be a home or a business.

What is Premises Liability?

Premises liability is a form of negligence and an important part of the field of personal injury law. A claim under premises liability arises when someone is injured on the property of another, whether it be a private home or a business. Slipping on a wet floor in a supermarket, falling through a rotted porch in someone’s home, and a child being injured in another person’s swimming pool are all examples of potential premises liability claims.

If you are injured on someone else’s property, as a business customer or guest, you may be able to hold them liable for injury due to:

  • Slip and fall injuries on a slick, uneven surface or steep stairway
  • Dog bite on the premises
  • A defective, broken appliance or equipment
  • Swimming pool accidents or lack of swimming pool maintenance
  • An assault or rape if the property lacks security
  • An unsafe amusement park ride or attraction
  • Accidents that result from consuming too much alcohol on the premises

How Do You Prove a Premises Liability Claim?

Your rights as an injured customer can be impacted by various factors including:

  • Your legal status (i.e. a store customer)
  • Condition of the property
  • Dangers to children
  • Presence of warnings
  • Degree of fault among both parties

To recover for a premises liability claim in Texas, you’ll generally need to prove the following four conditions:

  1. That there was a condition that presented an unreasonable risk on the property — for instance, a dangerous defect or hazard
  2. That the owner knew about the risk through actual or constructive knowledge
  3. That the owner failed to take reasonable care to fix or reduce the risk, such as by repairing the defect
  4. That you were injured as a result of that risk, suffering personal injuries

Texas, like many other states, bases liability on the classification of the person who is injured — in other words, the type of duty that is owed to you depends on your relationship to the property. Let’s say, for instance, that you were a trespasser on the property: even though you may have suffered an injury, you will be unlikely to recover, because trespassers are generally owed no duty on the premises. There are some exceptions to this rule, such as child trespassers who are attracted to something on the property that threatens them with harm, like an unfenced, deep swimming pool.

If you are a social visitor — also called licensee in premises liability — then you are owed the duty of ordinary care to fix any dangerous conditions, and your host also needs to warn you about those conditions. If you are a business visitor or customer — also called invitee — then you are owed the highest duty of care in premises liability: to warn you of any unreasonable risks on the land, as well as to inspect and make the land safe from unreasonable risky conditions. A premises liability attorney in Houston can help decipher which classification you will fall under, and what duty of care applies as a result.

What Kinds of Injuries Typically Result from Premises Liability Cases, and What Costs May be Associated with Them?

Premises liability accidents can lead to many different injuries. Slipping or tripping over an object can cause various abrasions, broken bones, concussions, and even serious head, back, or spinal injuries, for example. Some injuries will be long-lasting, causing major pain and suffering. Some may even cause you to be out of work as a result of being injured.

As an injured customer, you may be able to recover financial damages, such as:

Filing a premises liability claim can help you recover your out-of-pocket costs, such as medical and hospital bills, doctor’s visits, prescription costs, and medical diagnostic tests that are needed. You can also potentially recover for the wages you lost as a result of being unable to work. Moreover, you can recover from your general damages, such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, and even the loss of enjoyment of activities you are unable to enjoy as a result of being injured.

In pursuing your premises liability claim, it is generally helpful to file a written report with the premises manager as soon as possible in the event you are physically able to do so in light of your injuries. Reporting the incident creates a record of what happened, makes denial of the incident more difficult, and provides proof when you file a claim. 

Other immediate actions to take include:

  • Taking photographs of the cause of injury
  • Getting the contact info of witnesses
  • Seeking prompt medical treatment
  • Recording all expenses related to the injury

Businesses have a duty to act in ways that maximize customer safety. Proving a breach of the duty of care is necessary to hold them liable.

How Can Having the Right Attorney Help Ensure a Positive Outcome?

Being injured on someone else’s property can be a scary experience, one which might result in serious personal injuries. These claims can be complex: not only will you need to prove the specific duty of care that was owed by the property owner, but you will also have to prove the facts behind your injuries. A Houston premises liability attorney on our team can discuss your rights and options, explore possible next steps, and advise you on your premises liability claim.

The legal team at Johnson Garcia Law has decades of combined experience litigating personal injury matters, including results obtained in lawsuits and other premises liability settlements. A knowledgeable and experienced Houston premises liability lawyer at Johnson Garcia LLP can review your claim and help obtain the compensation you deserve. There is no up-front cost, as we work under a “no recovery, no pay” model. 

Contact our Houston personal injury law firm for a free case evaluation at 832-402-9332.

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