Frequently Asked Questions about Premise Liability

premise liability no trespassing sign

Premise liability is the liability for any property owner or landowner for any loss, injury or harm on a property. Accidents can occur when basic aspects of property are not maintained properly, including structuring, floors and elevators. It is helpful to consult an Ottawa law firm to assess a premise liability case and determine who is at fault.

If you were injured on someone’s property it does not automatically mean the owner was negligent, nor does the property being in an unsafe condition mean the owner was negligent. In most premise liability cases, you will have to show that the owner reasonably knew there were unsafe conditions and did not take proper steps to fix the situation.

What obligation do property owners have?

Property owners not only have a duty to maintain properties and correct unsafe conditions, but to warn people of hazards and potential hazards. Duty of care is defined as a legal obligation imposed upon someone that requires them to adhere to a standard of reasonable care. An Ottawa law firm can tell you more about landowner’s duties related to an incident or even help property owners who have been served premise liability lawsuits.

What are the classifications of entrants?

Visitors to properties are categorized into three categories:

Invitee: An invitee is someone who the property owner has expressed or implied permission to enter the property for commercial or business dealings. This can include someone who is invited on land that is open to the general public. In these cases, a property owner owes the highest duty of care.

Licensee: A licensee is anyone who has the expressed or implied permission of the property owner to enter the property. Social guests such as friends, family or neighbors would be in this category. For example, if the owner knows a railing in a house is broken, and it does not appear broken, and he or she lets someone use the stairs anyway causing an injury then the licensee could file a premise liability case at an Ottawa law firm.

Trespasser: A trespasser is someone who goes onto a property without permission or unlawfully for his or her own purposes. In this instance, the property owner does not have a duty to warn the person of unsafe conditions or danger. There are exceptions when the trespasser is a child or the owner possessed any willful misconduct or entrapment.

What do you have to prove in a premise liability case?

Most premise liability claims are based on negligence. You have to prove that you were harmed, that the person who caused the injury owns, occupies or leases the property, that he or she was negligent in using the property and that the negligence was a factor in the harm. Damages available include financial compensation for medical bills and lost wages, as well as compensation for pain and suffering, mental distress and physical impairment. If you believe you have a premise liability case, contact the property owner, seek medical help for any injuries, document claims and contact a personal injury lawyer at an Ottawa law firm.