Charleston, IL Premises Liability Attorneys
Property Owners Have a Duty to Maintain Reasonably Safe Grounds
If you have been injured at a store, hotel, house, parking lot, porch, bridge, or any other building or property, you may be entitled to receive compensation for the injuries and losses you have experienced. Owners, caretakers, and managers of residential and commercial properties have a duty to maintain safe conditions on that property. When they breach this duty and you sustain an injury as a result, a premises liability action can hold them accountable for the property’s dangerous, unsafe, or otherwise poor condition.
Since 1996, The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm has fought for injured individuals in Coles County and St. Louis, MO. We are relentless in our pursuit of justice for those who have been harmed because of the hazardous conditions of another’s property, as evidenced by the millions of dollars we have secured in verdicts and settlements for our clients.
If you have been injured, call (217) 394-5885 today. Our Charleston premises liability attorneys offer case evaluations free of charge.
Types of Premises Liability Claims
Premises liability claims come in a variety of forms. A basic example is a slip and fall case, such as when a restaurant fails to warn its patrons about a freshly mopped floor, causing injury to an unsuspecting customer who slips on said floor. Claims may also be brought for injuries caused by inadequate security measures, poorly lit staircases or hallways, falling debris, items falling from shelves, gaseous leaks, broken sidewalks, structural defects, escalator or elevator malfunctions, walkway obstacles, or exposed wiring.
Simply put, individuals can file a claim for any injury they sustained because of a safety hazard present on another person’s property that the owner either knew or should have known about. Moreover, property owners are legally obligated to warn people on their property about any hazards so they may be avoided.
Potential Compensation Available to Eligible Claimants
When injuries occur as a result of hazardous conditions on a property, the injured person may be entitled to seek financial compensation for medical expenses, loss of earnings, pain and suffering, disfigurement, and any other physical and/or psychological limitations.
In premises liability actions, there are three different classes of eligible claimants:
- Invitees, or people invited onto the property, such as store customers;
- Licensees, or people who enter the property for their own business with the consent of the owner, such as contractors and party guests; and
- Underage trespassers, or minors who enter the property without the owner’s consent.
In the state of Illinois, each of these three types of visitors may file a claim if they were injured on another’s property. However, an adult trespasser is not eligible to pursue a premises liability claim since they entered the property without the consent of the owner, thus the owner did not owe a duty of care to them nor did they even have the chance to warn of any risks.
What if My Family Member Was Injured?
If your loved one was subjected to an untimely death due to a property owner’s negligence, filing a claim for wrongful death is a viable option. Surviving spouses and/or the next of kin may recover damages for the tragic loss of the society, love, affection, companionship, and support of their loved one, as well as for any medical expenses and funeral/burial costs.
Comparative Negligence and Shared Liability
Although state law requires property owners to fix any safety hazards as soon as possible, if any do exist and fair warning is given to those on the property, the owners cannot be held liable for any injuries resulting from the carelessness or negligence on the part of the visitor.
That being said, the jury will consider “comparative negligence,” meaning that even if you are found to be partially responsible for your injury, you can still file a claim if the majority of the fault lies with the property owner.
Per comparative negligence law, the jury will calculate shared liability and assign percentages. As long as you are less than 51% liable, compensation remains possible. For instance, if you are considered 20% liable for your injury, any compensation recovered will be scaled back to account for this shared liability.
Taking on Premises Liability Actions in Coles County
The attorneys at The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm have substantial experience handling premises liability cases. We scour not only federal and state building codes, but county and city building codes to uncover violations that prove the property was unsafe. We hire and consult experts in security, safety, and medicine, as needed. We have the trial experience and the legal knowledge to pursue real, life-changing results.