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What legal obligations do property owners face for injuries

As someone who has been hurt on someone else's property, you're probably unsure of how to proceed. Do you have a claim? What can an attorney do for you in this circumstance?

It's important to know that property owners have a legal duty to prevent injury if and when they can. There are three kinds of people that can be on a property, and each one is owed a different kind of legal duty. For example, if you're an invitee, then the property owner should present you with the highest degree of care. The facility should be safe, and you should be at no risk of harm.

If you're a licensee, it means that you're allowed on a property for your own purposes. The property still needs to be safe for you to enter, but the owner may only need to take reasonable care. This means that the owner won't have to look for unknown dangers or perform inspections of the property.

Finally, if you were hurt as a trespasser on someone else's property, you weren't authorized to be there. Normally, an owner has no obligation to you other than to make sure that the property is actually safe to be on. For instance, if the owner was not home and you tripped over a lawn mower, you couldn't prove that a standard of care wasn't present or that the owner was neglectful. You could still argue neglect if the property posed a risk of death to you, though, like if the building was falling apart or glass was shattered around the premises in a manner intending to injure others.

A New Jersey attorney can advise you of your options for seeking compensation if you were injured on someone else's property.

Source: FindLaw, "Property Owners' Legal Duty to Prevent Injury," accessed Oct. 29, 2015

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