Security cameras used to be rare. Forty years ago, the average person saw a security camera only in a bank or perhaps a jewelry store. But times have changed. With the emergence of digital technology, security cameras now seem to be universal.
Some people claim these cameras are everywhere because “Big Brother” is watching us, but the real reason you see so many security cameras is more practical. Hotels, retailers, and parking garages have security cameras because the owners are concerned about liability. This is where a Fresno premises liability law firm can help.
California’s residents and their visitors are victimized by criminals every day. Some of the crimes – as well as some of the injuries sustained by crime victims – could have been prevented if the owners of the property had provided the appropriate security.
WHAT ARE A PROPERTY OWNER’S LEGAL OBLIGATIONS?
Every property owner in this state is obligated under the law to make “reasonable” efforts to keep tenants, customers, employees, and other visitors protected from hazards – including the hazards that arise from crimes such as assault, battery, and robbery.
A property owner who fails to take appropriate security measures or who fails to inform visitors regarding possibly dangerous conditions can be held accountable for his or her negligence with a premises liability claim.
WHEN SHOULD YOU SPEAK WITH A PREMISES LIABILITY LAW FIRM?
If you’re injured in California by criminal activity due to a property owner’s failure to provide security cameras, locks, alarms, sufficient lighting, or a security guard, speak about your rights and your legal recourse at once with a reliable California accident attorney.
When someone is injured on private property in California, and when that injury could have been prevented if a property owner had taken reasonable action, the owner may have to pay the victim for the losses and damages arising from the injury.
Along with the injuries that are caused by potholes, dilapidated staircases, slippery floors, and other hazardous conditions, a property owner in California may be held liable in some circumstances for the injuries resulting from acts of violence and criminal behavior.
WHAT IS CONSIDERED ADEQUATE AND INADEQUATE SECURITY?
Security is important to everyone. Real estate agents emphasize it when they make sales. Retailers advertise brightly-lit parking areas. Fans at concerts and sporting events expect to see security cameras and security guards protecting them.
Obviously, you’re not obligated to have a security guard protect the visitors to your home. However, security is imperative at parking garages, shopping malls, and at other spots where a crime is likely to be committed.
Inadequate security might include:
1. poor visibility and lighting in garages, parking lots, hallways, and stairwells
2. defective or broken locks or alarm systems
3. not enough security cameras or security guards
4. failing to have or to maintain railings, sprinklers, and other safety measures
WHERE IS ADEQUATE SECURITY IMPERATIVE?
Security issues emerge wherever access is provided to the public: stadiums, arenas, apartment complexes, shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, amusement parks, theaters, parking lots, and garages. When property owners do not keep properties reasonably safe, tragedies can happen.
When Brian Stow was battered by assailants at Dodger Stadium in 2011, the poor lighting in the stadium’s parking lot was a contributing factor. Stow suffered a severe brain injury and now is disabled. The Dodger organization was ordered to pay $13.9 million in damages to Mr. Snow.
Whenever anyone is mugged, assaulted, battered, or otherwise injured by criminal activity on private property, the victim may pursue a claim to seek compensation from the property’s owner.
When a criminal injures someone on private property, even if no suspect is ever arrested, the property owner – in many cases – may be liable for the failure to take reasonable and appropriate safety measures.
HOW CAN YOU PREVAIL IN A PREMISES LIABILITY DISPUTE?
If you are injured by criminal activity on private property in California, will you be able to take legal action and receive compensation? To be compensated, you and your attorney will have to prove these claims:
1. The property’s owner did not meet his or her legal responsibility to keep the property reasonably safe. A hazardous situation existed at the property, and you were not adequately warned about it.
2. You suffered injuries because of criminal activity at the property, and you and your attorney can prove it.
3. The property owner’s negligence was a factor that contributed directly to your personal injury. For example, an owner failed to install adequate lighting inside a parking garage, and you were robbed because you couldn’t clearly see the assailant.
WHAT IF THE PROPERTY OWNER CLAIMS THE SECURITY WAS ADEQUATE?
How can a private property owner defend himself or herself against a premises liability claim arising from criminal activity? An owner might assert that your own negligence is the reason why you were injured and offer one of these claims in his or her defense:
1. The injury victim was inattentive to the situation and the surroundings.
2. The injury victim was trespassing or in an off-limits area.
3. A reasonable individual would quickly have recognized that the area was dangerous.
Premises liability cases arising from inadequate security can get quite complicated. You’ll need to have an experienced Fresno premises liability attorney review the details of the case and suggest the most constructive way to move forward, which might be a premises liability claim.
In California, most premises liability cases are settled privately by the attorneys for both sides, and most injury victims in these cases never even have to appear in a courtroom.
WHAT WILL A PREMISES LIABILITY LAWYER DO FOR YOU?
In the rare cases that cannot be resolved out-of-court, your attorney may recommend going to trial and having a jury determine if – and how much – the owner of the property should compensate you for your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
In California, if you’re injured by criminal activity on private property, seek medical attention at once. After a healthcare provider has treated you, arrange right away to discuss your rights and options with a reliable and qualified Fresno premises liability attorney.
California has established a three-year statute of limitations for premises liability actions. That three years usually begins on the date the injury is sustained, but if you suffered a latent or hard-to-find injury, the statute of limitations “clock” may start on the injury’s “discovery” date.
WHY IS IT IMPERATIVE TO ACT IMMEDIATELY?
Don’t take three years – don’t even take three weeks – to reach out for the legal help you will need. Evidence deteriorates rapidly, and the memories of witnesses fade quickly. The sooner you act, the more likely you are to prevail with a premises liability claim.
If you have been injured by criminal activity on private property, put your case in the hands of a good premises liability attorney at once.
In California, the injured victims of negligence are legally entitled to complete compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and all other related damages.
If you’ve been injured by negligence, you have the right to a lawyer’s help, but you must take the first step and make the call.