What is a premises liability case in New York?

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Joseph P. Awad - Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice - Super Lawyers

Answered by: Joseph P. Awad

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Premises liability refers to conditions on land or in a building that are not reasonably safe and that lead to a person’s injury. An owner of a building or land has a legal duty to use reasonable care to keep the premises in a reasonably safe condition for the protection of all persons whose presence is reasonably foreseeable.

Defining An Unsafe Condition

An unsafe condition includes such defects as poor lighting inside or immediately outside the building, defective locks on doors and windows, lack of safe staircases, defective handrails, slippery substances that are on the floor for an extended period of time, poor management of smoke alarms or fire alarms and non-compliance with local ordinances and regulations.

After An Injury, This Is Step One

The first thing you should do is seek medical attention. To protect your legal interests you should have photographs taken with the use of a cellphone, identify witnesses by name and contact information, and call a lawyer as soon as possible.

When choosing a lawyer to handle your premises liability case, experience counts. Premises liability cases can be complex and involve many different aspects of the law. You do not want an attorney who is not familiar with these types of cases. A lawyer experienced in premises liability cases is likely the best choice to represent you. Sometimes the lawyer’s website lists the lawyer’s experience in such cases. There are also peer-rated services that select lawyers, such as Super Lawyers, which can also be a factor in your choice. You should thoroughly examine an attorney’s background as well as speak to him or her to fully understand how he or she can best help you. 

Talking To The Insurance Company – Yes Or No? 

You should not speak to the insurance company representing the owner of the premises until you have had legal counsel. You have the right to speak directly, but you are at a disadvantage without an attorney representing you. An attorney can provide you a level playing field when communicating with the representative of the insurance company. The representative of the insurance company has a duty to the owner to gather information to help the owner of the premises and the insurance company defeat your claim for compensation.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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