Premises liability claims in California may arise from numerous dangerous conditions that could be present on public property or the premises of home or store owners. The hazards could include staircases that are poorly lit or without handrails, uneven or damaged walkways, wet floors and defective elevators. Inadequate security, dog bites and falling merchandise have also been known to lead to premises liability actions.
When you suffer personal injury on property where you are a legal visitor, it is important to get a medical evaluation. Not all injuries are immediately evident, and some may need medical care in the future. Medical expense records will form an important part of a premises liability claim. In addition, written reports by medical staff who attended to your injury may also be of value.
Cell phone technology can help you to take photos of the hazard that caused your injury. It is not uncommon for property owners to repair dangerous conditions prior to an investigation. If there were witnesses to the incident, you should record their contact details for later questioning about the condition of the property or the circumstances of the accident.
Insurance companies are often quick to offer a settlement or get you to sign a release, and it is not wise to sign anything or agree to a settlement prior to consulting with an experienced premises liability attorney. Such a professional will assess the circumstances and negotiate a settlement on your behalf. If a satisfactory agreement cannot be reached, he or she will gather the necessary evidence to build a strong case to present in a California civil court. Whichever option is chosen, your attorney will endeavor to obtain full and fair compensation in recovery of damages. More information may be obtained on our premises liability website.
Source: hg.org, “What to do if Injured on Someone Else’s Property“, Nov. 10, 2014