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Kansas City Premises Liability Attorney

Injured in a Premises Liability Accident?

Being injured at someone else's premises, whether it is a residence or business, can lead to a possible claim for compensation if there was some form of negligence on the part of the owner. Either through negligence in failing to correct an unsafe situation, or failure to warn guests about one.

An accident stemming from premises liability can occur almost anywhere, such as a:

  • Community pool
  • Supermarket
  • Mall
  • Neighbor's home

It must be shown that there was negligence on the part of the property owner, who knew about a situation and failed to take any action to fix it that was the cause of the injury.

If you have been injured at someone else's premises and are not sure of your legal options, contact a Kansas City personal injury attorney at Meyerkord, Russell & Hergott to find out what your best course of action is.

The Heart of Premises Liability Cases

All premises liability cases, whether slip or trip and falls, crime victim cases, or falling merchandise, stem from a business’s obligation towards its customers. All businesses that let people onto their property must make it safe for their customers. Even our own homes must be made safe for those we invite into our house. As a society, we’ve made it a rule that if we invite people into our homes or our businesses, we must make these places safe for our guests.

This rule stems from the fact that we know more about our own dwellings than outsiders. We know, or at least should know, whether any dangers exist on our property because we live and work there and spend more time there than anyone else. Since we know more about our own property than outsiders, it stands to reason that we should warn outsiders we’ve invited onto our property about any dangers.

If we don’t warn our guests about dangers on our property, and as a result a guest gets hurt, we are responsible for the harm. We can’t simply chalk up the incident to happenstance, or blame the guest for getting hurt. We have to make it right. This is the what premises liability cases are all about.

Injuries From a Premises Liability Accident

These types of accidents can lead to all manner of injuries, from broken bones to head and brain injuries, or back and spinal cord injuries to near drowning and even death. It is important to have a personal injury lawyer to protect your rights, as you will need medical attention and your claim must be proven to have occurred due to the negligence of the property owner.

Properly investigating and presenting your claim is crucial if you hope to obtain compensation for your losses. Meyerkord, Russell & Hergott is committed to working hard on your behalf to get you the recovery for damages you deserve. Contact our office today to discuss your case.

TYPES OF VISITORS AND THE CARE THEY ARE OWED

The level of care owed to someone who visits another person's property depends on what type of visitor they are. Missouri recognizes three types of visitors; trespassers, licensees, and invitees, and each is owed a different level of care when they visit another person's property.

Trespassers

Trespassers visit your property without consent or privilege. Generally speaking, trespassers aren't owed any level of care when they are on another person's property without their consent. However, property owners can be liable to a trespasser who is injured on your property if:

  • There is a dangerous condition on the property,
  • The property owner knew about the condition, and
  • The owner knew someone was trespassing on their property

Obviously, the dangerous condition must have injured the trespasser for the owner to be liable. An example of this is if a path crosses through a person's property and there is something dangerous near the path, like a hole or cliff. If the owner knew people use the path without their consent and knew of the dangerous condition, they would then owe the trespassers the duty to warn, barricade, or remove it. There are several exceptions to this general rule.

Licensees

A licensee visits a person's property with consent, but for their own purpose, like a social guest. Property owners can be liable for injuries to licensees if:

  • There is a dangerous condition on the property,
  • The property owner knew about the condition,
  • The licensee did not know about the dangerous condition,
  • The owner knew the licensee was unaware of the dangerous condition, and
  • The owner failed to remove, remedy, or warn of the dangerous condition.

The obligation to remove, etc., the dangerous condition is based on ordinary care, meaning that a property owner doesn't need to be very careful or go too far out of his or her way to take care of a dangerous condition.

Invitees

Property owners owe invitees the highest level of care of all visitors. An invitee is someone who visits a person's property with their consent and for their benefit. The most typical invitee is a customer in a store. A property owner is liable for an invitee's injuries on your property if:

  • He or she is injured because of a dangerous condition on the property,
  • The owner knew or should have known of the condition, and
  • The owner failed to remove, remedy, or warn of it.

The "should have known" wording means that the owner must use ordinary care to find dangerous conditions on their property and take care of them before invitees visit.

Categorizing visitors and the care they are owed can be difficult in a premises liability case, especially if the visitor could fall into multiple categories. If you you have been injured visiting someone else's property and have questions, please feel free to contact our Kansas City premises liability lawyers at any time.

Find out what your legal rights are when you are injured due to a premises liability situation.
Call our firm to speak with an experienced lawyer.

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