Businesses invite the general public into their stores or places of business and have an obligation to protect their patrons. In legal terms, guests in commercial or business establishments are called “invitees.” Businesses must take reasonable steps to ensure your safety. They have a responsibility to protect you from hazards that could be discovered upon an inspection of the premises.
If you are injured at someone’s place of business in Arizona, the court may consider many factors in determining whether the owner or occupant acted with reasonable care, including the circumstances under which you entered the property, how the property is used, how foreseeable your injury was, and the reasonableness of the owner’s or occupant’s efforts to repair the dangerous situation or to warn guests of the hazard.
If you are injured at a business, your Arizona personal injury lawyer usually brings a claim for negligence on your behalf against the owner. Your lawyer must prove that the owner or occupant’s negligence caused your injury due to his/her action or inaction. In general, the courts in Arizona will compensate you for your economic and non-economic losses that occur as a result of your injury if your claim is successful. This includes medical bills, lost wages, other expenses related to your injury, pain and suffering, physical impairment or disability, disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Here are some of the most common claims for premise liability.
1. Slip or Trip and Fall: This is the most common cause of injuries. It generally occurs when there are unmarked wet floors, unmarked slippery floors, food on the floor, untethered cords, or damaged carpets or sidewalks. One of the biggest challenges with these cases is proving that the owner or occupant knew of the hazard or should have discovered the hazard and corrected it prior to your fall.
2. Restaurant Accidents: This includes food-borne illnesses, being burned with hot coffee, servers dropping things on you, as well as slip and fall accidents.
3. Workplace Accidents: This includes workplaces that are not safe due to asbestos, poorly maintained equipment, and lack of safety protocols.
4. Negligent Security: This includes having inadequate security at the business or having a broken electronic security system. You may have a claim against a business if you are injured during a robbery or assault that could have been prevented or your injuries lessened if proper security was present.
5. School ground/Playground Accidents: Schools and parks that are open to the general public have an obligation to maintain the trails and play equipment.
If you are injured on another’s premise, Arizona allows you up to two years from the date of injury to file your claim.
If you have been injured at a business, workplace, or playground due to the owner’s negligence in maintaining the premise, please contact the Phoenix personal injury lawyers at the personal injury law firm Oracle Law Group today.
Photo credit: Elliott Brown from Flickr