Having a friend or guest get injured at your home or on your property can be a traumatizing experience, leaving you with questions about your own responsibility in the ordeal. But while you may believe that it was nothing more than an accident, the laws regarding medical payments and insurance claims may actually make you culpable for damages. If a guest of yours has recently been injured on your property, read on to learn about your potential legal obligations.
The Idea of Premises Liability
In the United States, the owner of any building or property, whether used for business or personal purposes, has a responsibility to maintain a specific level of safety and security to ensure the welfare of those who visit. This concept is called premises liability, and pertains to your situation. If the injured party wishes to sort out this situation through legal channels, they will most likely attempt to prove that your negligence led to their injury. In order to do so, the injured must show that you were aware of the dangerous condition that existed in your home, actively chose to ignore it, and that it was this condition specifically that caused the injury. While you may not believe this to be true, a skilled personal injury attorney will try to attribute the injury to your negligence in order to secure damages.
Should I Get a Lawyer?
Of course, not all situations need to be solved in court, and mediating the issue between you and the injured party may be more efficient and much less costly. If you both choose to take this route though, it is important to have a written agreement together that details each individual’s responsibility in the rehabilitation process. If your injured guest believes that it was an accident altogether, you may not need to pay a cent for medical bills. On the other hand, if they believe that your negligence led to their injury, you may have to compromise on a payment schedule, or risk taking the matter to court.
Keep Your Home Safe at All Times
Naturally, it is impossible to know when an injury like this may happen on your premises, and therefore difficult to plan in order to prevent it. That being said, taking specific steps towards making your property a safe area can help you avoid this issue in the future. To do so, make sure that any sharp objects or edges are covered or sanded down, perform any repairs that can hide dangerous features, and take steps to remove or cover anything that could be harmful. While this may not prevent all problems, it will reduce your liability should something occur.
Solve the Problem Today
If someone has been injured at your home or on your property, there is a chance that you may be held liable. In order to understand your rights and responsibilities, consult this post, and seek the advice from a legal professional to help put this issue behind you.
This article was provided by Sandy Wallace, aspiring lawyer with an interest in civil rights and personal disputes. If you have a dispute regarding physical harm or damage, Sandy recommends getting a personal injury lawyer.