In Florida, all property owners have a legal responsibility to ensure that their land is safe for entry and use. This duty extends to private homeowners, as well as businesses and government buildings.
When a property owner disregards this responsibility and someone is hurt, they might be held legally responsible to provide compensation. These cases, however, are often more complicated than they may appear.
If you were harmed on someone else’s property, consider reaching out to a Tarpon Springs premises liability lawyer to discuss your legal options. A skilled and knowledgeable injury attorney could help to assess your circumstances and work tirelessly to build a thorough civil claim.
The Law Regarding Invitees, Licensees, and Trespassers
Florida law separates people entering a property into three different categories: invitees, licensees, and trespassers. As a result, property owners owe varying levels of responsibilities to each of these categories.
Defining an Invitee in Tarpon Springs
Legally, an invitee is someone that was invited onto a property for a business transaction. For instance, the customers at a grocery store would be considered invitees because they are there for the profit of the business or property owner. A person who has been invited into someone’s home by the homeowner is also considered invitees.
Under the law, property owners have the highest obligation to ensure that invitees are kept safe. This means they must not harm them and should also warn them of any dangerous conditions that may be present on their land.
For instance, if part of the flooring in a grocery store was damaged and might cause someone to fall, the grocery store should mark off this area and put up signs. Neglect to do this means the store could be held legally liable for any resulting injuries.
The Rights of a Licensee
A licensee, on the other hand, is someone allowed on the property but who was not invited. Also legally known as a discovered trespasser, a person that went into a grocery store only to use their restroom, or a salesperson visiting homes door to door, would be considered a licensee. While property owners have an obligation to warn a licensee of hazards and not cause them direct harm, they do not carry the same level obligation to ensure they are kept safe.
When is Someone Considered a Trespasser?
Finally, trespassers are the least protected form of visitors. Because they are not legally allowed on the premises, the property owner is not required to warn them of dangers on the property. They are not, however, allowed to intentionally cause the trespasser harm.
Unless the person entering the property was a clear invitee, these visitation terms and laws can quickly become complicated. To make sense of them, and to determine whether or not an injured person has a right to seek compensation, a potential claimant may benefit from speaking to a Tarpon Springs premises liability attorney.
When Could Property Owners Be Held Liable in Tarpon Springs?
When an accident occurs on someone’s land, the property owner is not automatically responsible. In Tarpon Springs, the law states that the property owner must have known about a dangerous or hazardous condition and still not done anything to resolve it.
For instance, if someone cause’s a spill within a grocery store and subsequently slips, the store would most likely not be held liable because they had no way of knowing about the hazard, and therefore no way of addressing it.
However, if an employee caused a spill and neglected to clean it, leading to a visitor’s injuries, this may be clear grounds for a compensation claim. Because of these nuances around determining liability, it is important for an injured plaintiff to build a thorough claim before seeking compensation.
When to Call a Tarpon Springs Premises Liability Attorney
If you were injured on someone else’s property, consider contacting a Tarpon Springs premises liability lawyer. When a landowner’s negligence has led to your damages, you may be eligible for compensation.
A claim may be able to request recovery for associated medical bills, as well as lost wages, emotional anguish, and pain and suffering, among others. Instead of navigating the claims process alone, however, a well-versed attorney could help you with each step of the process. To schedule a consultation, call today.