Property owners have certain requirements to keep their premises safe. These obligations are subject to certain legal limitations set forth in state premises liability law. Generally, property owners should warn of known dangers, seek to fix them, and even conduct reasonable inspections to discover unknown hazards. If you were hurt when visiting another’s property you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
To determine your rights, speak with a qualified Kirkland premises liability lawyer right away. A seasoned attorney could help you determine whether you are entitled to substantial compensation for your harm.
Legal Status of Visitors on Property
Property owners owe different types of visitors different degrees of care. A plaintiff’s visitor classification substantially affects their rights on another person’s property and their ability to recover damages if they were injured. Working with a Kirkland attorney could help a lawful visitor recover compensation if they were hurt on another person’s property.
An invitee is invited onto the property, often for some type of business purpose. If the purpose is mutually beneficial to both parties, the visitor is likely an invitee. The invitation does not have to be express, it can be implied. This is common when a shopper enters a store or other public place.
Business owners must protect invitees by using ordinary care to keep the property in a reasonable and safe condition. They must also conduct reasonable inspection to seek potential problems and fix them.
A licensee is also allowed on the property, but they are not there for a business purpose. Usually this type of visitor is a social guest, family member, or friend. A property owner is required to warn of any known hazards and report them to the visitor. However, there is usually no duty to conduct inspections.
A trespasser is on the property but without the right to be there. They are offered almost no protections of any kind. The property owner’s only duty is to avoid wanton or willful harm to the trespasser.
Determining Property Owner Liability
Not every property owner will be liable for every accident that occurs on their premises. A property owner must have either created or permitted the hazard to exist that made the property dangerous or hazardous. If the property owner created or allowed the condition to occur, they are generally be responsible for rectifying the hazard.
The Revised Code of Washington § 4.24.210 protects certain owners of property that is used for recreational purposes. These property owners who allow recreational use of their land are often protected from any unintentional injuries to the users of the property. However, it will not necessarily protect the owner from a condition they caused or knew about without reasonable effort to fix it.
A property owner may not actually know about a danger, but they may have “constructive knowledge” if they should have known about the danger had they been reasonably diligent. If a reasonable property owner would have discovered the danger in the amount of time it existed, the owner may be deemed to have known about it even if they had no actual knowledge it existed. A premises liability attorney could help prove a Kirkland property owner is liable for a person’s damages.
Schedule a Consultation with a Kirkland Premises Liability Attorney
A premises liability claim may be the right path to get you the compensation you deserve. However, without reliable legal guidance, you could find it difficult to recover the full compensation you are owed.
Speak with a Kirkland premises liability lawyer right away. We are here to help.