When you enter a property that is owned and maintained by someone else, you have every reason to expect that your visit should be safe and free of unexpected hazards. While most of the time this is the case, there are the rare and unfortunate times when a property owner or property manager fails to upkeep their property in a way that is safe for you and can lead to an accident and serious injuries. If you are injured on someone else’s property as the result of their failure to address a hazard or safety issue within reason, then you have a right to seek compensation from them in the form of a San Diego promise liability injury claim.
Work With Injury Trial Lawyers, APC To Get the Legal Support You Deserve
Our team has a history of successful cases where we have represented a victim of a premise liability issue and gotten them the settlement that they truly deserve for their injuries. After an injury, you should be able to use the upcoming days, weeks, and months to focus on recovering from your injuries, and being able to reduce your stress is one way to improve your recovery time and success. When you do not have to deal directly with the insurance company or the defendant’s legal team, and you are confident that there is someone fighting for your financial security, you can prioritize your personal and professional life instead.
Contact A San Diego Premise Liability Lawyer You Can Count On
We offer a free initial consultation for prospective clients, where we will be able to discuss the specifics of your accident and injuries in detail. During this consultation, we can talk about past cases that we have successfully represented that are similar to your own, as well as answer a range of questions that you understandably have after this traumatic event.
The sooner that we are able to speak during your free consultation, the sooner we will be able to begin building your case and fighting for your financial rights. Read more below to get a better idea about some of the major factors of a premise liability injury in San Diego, and contact us now to get working on your case today.
What Is Premise Liability?
There are many times where someone is injured, and there is someone else who is clearly at fault for it, but how do you determine the type of personal injury that you have suffered? At the heart of your case, it does not necessarily matter the nature of the accident, as long as we are able to prove that the other party had a responsibility to keep you safe, that they failed this responsibility, and that this failure caused you to be injured. However, knowing the type of personal injury that you have suffered is an important way to understand the specifics of your case.
A Property Owner’s Duty of Care
Every property has someone who is in charge of maintaining the conditions of the property, typically an owner or lessee. In some instances, it may be government property and therefore a Federal or State agency is in charge of the maintenance, or in instances of private property it can be an individual or a business entity. Regardless, when you visit the property, there is someone who is responsible to keep you safe from harm.
This duty of care means that the responsible party must keep up with all maintenance, such as fixing broken or faulty staircases, mopping wet floors and fixing the cause of the wet floor, and warning visitors of any possible hazard that is not immediately correctable. In colder climates, icy walkways are a very common cause of premise liability cases after someone slips and falls.
Your Accident and Injuries Resulting From a Failed Duty of Care
If you are in a shopping center (or any other property) and slip on a wet floor, there is a good chance that the wet floor is the result of a maintenance failure and that someone must be held responsible for these injuries. The same goes for any sort of private, semi-private, public, or government property that you visit, and a wet floor is only one of many types of hazards you may encounter. Broken stair treads and faulty handrails are other common causes of premise liability injuries, although there are many other examples, as well.
If you encounter a hazard that someone else is responsible for, and are injured in an accident, then these injuries and the financial impacts associated with them should not be yours to bear.
Seeking Compensation In a Premise Liability Case
Once it has been established that your injuries are covered under California tort laws, the next step is to initiate a claim with the insurance company representing the responsible party, or with the responsible party themselves depending on the situation. Regardless, one of the central things to remember through this entire process is that the party responsible for paying your damages will work aggressively to limit the amount that they are responsible for.
Insurance Claims Investigations
Typically, the property is covered by some sort of insurance policy intended to protect the owner from financial liability. In this instance, you will need to file a claim and begin working with a claims adjuster who will carry out a detailed investigation into the incident. Many people believe that they should wait until after this phase is completed before hiring an attorney but the sooner you are represented by a premise liability lawyer in San Diego, the better. Each step of the investigation will be carried out with the intention of identifying ways to limit your settlement amount, meaning that you should have your own support for building a strong argument for your benefit.
Calculating Damage Amounts
The central, and most obvious, damages in a personal injury case are the medical bills and lost wages that a victim experiences. However, these are only a portion of the overall damages that you are entitled to. Personal injury damages are divided into economic and non-economic damages, and while each is very different, they are both extremely important for you to be compensated for.
Economic damages are the basis of a personal injury claim and include things like medical bills and other expenses directly related to the injury and accident, as well as impacts on the victim’s income. Additionally, these damages include things like any services that a victim has to pay for that they would have normally performed themselves had they not been injured. There are many other economic factors that we will explore specific to your case, as well.
Non-economic damages are far more complicated and abstract than economic damages, which is one reason why they are typically contested more aggressively. However, they are no less important than the economic damages, and we will fight to make sure that you get the settlement that you deserve for both. These types of damages include things like the actual pain and suffering of an injury, as well as the emotional impacts that a traumatic accident can have on your life. The insurance company will attempt to avoid these damages, but a premise liability lawyer in San Diego can negotiate these damages while you are recovering.
Initial Insurance Offer and Negotiations
When the claims investigation is completed, the insurance company will make an initial settlement offer and will require that you waive your rights to any future legal actions about this accident in exchange for the payment. The problem with this offer is that the amount of money they are proposing is rarely, if ever, close to what you truly deserve.
This is the beginning of negotiations, where we will be able to counter their offer with our own research and calculations into what we believe that you truly deserve. Generally, a settlement amount is less than the amount that a victim may ultimately receive after a full lawsuit, but there are many drawbacks to pursuing a case through the California courts, including the additional time, court fees, and many requirements necessary to conclude a trial. Instead, a fair settlement will account for avoiding these issues.
Common Injuries in Premise Liability Accidents
The following are just a few examples of common injuries that victims may suffer following a premise liability accident, but we understand that your situation is unique and that your injuries will likely vary. Every accident, and every injury, is unique, which is why the team at Injury Trial Lawyers, APC focuses on building a unique and individual plan for each client that we work with, including you.
Fractured or broken bones are extremely painful and require immediate medical intervention to reset the bones and then give them the appropriate support for a full recovery. Minor fractures, such as hairline fractures, may simply require a brace and other simple care, whereas major injuries like compound fractures, displaced fractures, or other complications may require surgical intervention.
A sprain is a soft-tissue injury that typically comes with hyperextension injuries or other impacts that cause the soft tissues to be overstretched, and therefore to tear or rupture. Since the injuries often result from overextension, these types of injuries are most common on joints such as wrists or ankles. Depending on the severity of the sprain, recovery may require rest and care or could require surgery or other, more drastic, procedures in order to aid recovery.
Bruising is common in impact injuries, and are characterized by dark colorations and sensitive areas when the capillaries in a localized area are ruptured or otherwise damaged. This damage causes blood to pool in these painful areas, but are generally left to repair themselves. Hematomas are sometimes confused with bruises but are actually more serious injuries that could require medical care. Serious bruising may be an indication of another injury, meaning that you should consult with your doctor as soon as possible.
Internal bleeding is a serious and sometimes fatal injury caused by a variety of other injuries, including blunt trauma to an organ, a fracture that ruptures a blood vessel, and a range of other things. Regardless of the cause, it is absolutely essential that you see a doctor immediately if you suspect that you have internal bleeding.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, are sometimes known as the “silent killer,” because there is no visible physical injury that the victim has suffered. A TBI can range from a minor concussion with mild headaches to something as serious as brain death, or may even be fatal. Any degree of TBI must be addressed by a doctor to ensure that you take every step necessary to prevent long-term or permanent damage due to improper treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions About San Diego Premise Liability Cases
During your free consultation, we will be able to go over a variety of the following questions and provide you with specific answers in greater detail. However, the following are some examples of the most common types of questions that we answer for clients in the early stages of our work together. Whether or not you see a question or answer that applies to you, contact us now to get working on your own case today.
Do I have a right to compensation after a premise liability injury?
If you were involved in an accident that someone else caused, through negligence, recklessness, or another failure of their duty to keep you safe, then you are likely entitled to compensation for your injuries and other damages that you endure. One of the first details that we will set out to establish in your case is why the defendant is at fault, as well as the extent to which they are at fault. Once we have established fault, we will be able to move forward with the rest of your case.
How much is my premise liability case worth?
In order to determine the value of your case, we will need to go through all of the damages that you have suffered, both economic and non-economic. In addition to simply totaling the medical bils and lost wages that you have accrued following your accident, we will work to quantify your non-economic damages such as the pain and suffering of your injuries, in order to get you the money that you truly deserve.
Is there a statute of limitations in California for premise liability cases?
California typically has a 2-year statute of limitations on personal injury cases, although there are certain exceptions to this limitation. For example, if you are involved in an accident but were not immediately aware of your injuries, then you may be able to request that your statute of limitations is revised to accommodate this detail. Regardless of the amount of time that you have, the sooner that you begin working with a personal injury attorney, the better.