When you walk through a store or someone else’s home, you have the right to feel that the area is secure, and that any hazards will be properly pointed out in advance. Residential and commercial property owners have a duty of care that means they must always be cognizant of the potential for a slip and fall injury. Board-certified attorney David E. Gordon can provide more insight into the duty of care in a Memphis slip and fall case.
What is a Property Owner’s Duty of Care?
Premises liability is the owner’s responsibility for the injury that occurs to another person on their land, whether it is from a slip and fall, an animal attack, or something else. The injuries will likely be covered under that owner’s premises liability insurance policy, which is the same as a homeowner’s policy.
A property owner’s duty of care under Memphis slip and fall law is to provide reasonably safe premises. This means that the property has no dangerous conditions that would injure somebody, whether that condition was directly from the owner or it was a naturally-occurring condition which was known to them. Guests on their property must be safe from the danger that owners create, as well as some dangers that occur without their knowledge.
The Memphis Standard of Reasonable Care
In Memphis, reasonable care means that the owner has taken reasonable steps to protect the public from danger. This means that the homeowner or business owner must make some kind of inspection of their property in order to determine whether there are any dangerous conditions.
A business owner is required to examine their property regularly, including the parking lot, sidewalk, and aisles of the store. While parking lots and sidewalks do not necessarily need to be examined once a day, the store aisles or other common areas should be inspected every 20 to 30 minutes in order to identify any new hazards that have appeared.
A homeowner cannot leave a large hole in their front yard without at least properly warning of its existence and sealing it off. They also cannot leave a step on the exterior or the interior of the house in disrepair without being responsible for any injuries that follow. Similarly, a business owner cannot allow a refrigerating unit to leak water, or else risk somebody slipping and falling.
Obligations of Property Owners
Businesses must follow their policy manuals to keep their premises safe but many of them continue to ignore those rules, opening up the door for injuries and lawsuits. The duty of care to prevent a slip and fall accident is inherent in any property that someone owns in Memphis.
The fact that a property owner is not aware of their obligation will not be any kind of defense to their liability. Every business owner must know that they are required to maintain their property in a safe condition. This is also true of homeowners – meaning they cannot claim they are not responsible due to not knowing their obligation to protect others from harm.
Talk to an Attorney About the Duty of Care in a Memphis Slip and Fall Case
A person who owns or manages a piece of property has an obligation to keep it free of dangers to others. Qualified help from the Law Office of David E. Gordon can explain the duty of care in a Memphis slip and fall case. Call us now for a free consultation.