Denton Private Property Premises Liability Lawyer
The law requires that all private property owners make a reasonable effort to prevent accidents and injuries from happening on their property. Reasonable effort will vary depending on the reason and type of visitor that enters the premises. When accidents occur, and people sustain injuries because of reasonably foreseeable dangers, the civil court could hold the owner or property manager accountable for the damages and losses.
These cases are complex and require vast civil law knowledge, investigation, review, and litigation, which a dedicated premises liability attorney could provide. A Denton private property premises liability lawyer has the experience to assist you through the process.
Three Types of Property Visitors
The law puts visitors into three categories for private property premises liability claims. A seasoned Denton attorney could review the specifics of the private property liability case and help their client determine under which type they would fall.
The law considers a guest an invitee when they are on the premises at the express or implied invitation of the owner, and the person has entered the premises to enjoy it for a public purpose or for the purpose of doing business with the owner. One example of an invitee would be a person who enters a public park and eats lunch on a bench. Another example of an invitee would be a person who enters a retain store in order to buy goods being sold by the owner. If the purpose of the person’s entrance is connected to a business transaction or economic benefit, then that person is provided invitee status. The owner has a duty to protect an invitee from dangerous conditions that they know about, and those that they reasonably should have known about if they were exercising reasonable care inspecting and making the premises safe.
The law considers a guest a licensee when they are on the premises with the permission of the owner. One of the key distinctions between a licensee and invitee is that a licensee is not on the premises because of any business or contractual relationship with the owner. One common example would be a person who enters a premise to attend a social gathering or party being hosted by the owner. The owner owes a licensee a duty only to warn them (or make safe) dangerous conditions of which the owner has actual knowledge. If the owner is unaware of a dangerous condition, then their duty to warn and make safe would not trigger for a person who falls under this licensee status.
A trespasser enters a property without the owner’s invitation or knowledge, and without any lawful right or authority to do so. Property owners do not owe trespassers a duty of care in most cases, provided that they are not permitted to intentionally and willfully injure a trespasser. The exception is that when there is a man-made hazard that the person in charge of the property is aware of, and the owner is aware of a trespasser, they must exercise reasonable care for the trespasser’s safety. Property owners may also be held liable for damages caused to children from dangerous conditions that entice or induce them to trespass onto the property. If a property owner keeps dangerous equipment, chemicals, or other hazardous objects on his property, they have a duty to exercise reasonable care in placing warning signs and putting up barriers in order to prevent potential trespassing minors from accessing the property.
The Statute of Limitations in Denton Premises Liability Lawsuits
The statute of limitations is legislation that dictates how long a person has to file a lawsuit in personal injury cases. Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code section 16.003 provides that the injured party in a private property premises liability claim must sue within two years of the date they sustained damages. However, the statue grants a few exceptions to that default time frame.
One such exception occurs if the claimant’s damages are not immediately apparent, and in such cases the clock will begin running on the date they reasonably discover their injuries. If the injured party is a minor when the accident occurs, the clock will not start running right away. In cases that involve children under 18, the minor claimant has until their 20th birthday to file. A practiced lawyer could help their client ensure they prepare and file the private premises liability claim within the time frame required by the statute of limitations.
Schedule a Consultation with a Qualified Private Property Premises Liability Attorney in Denton
When avoidable injuries and damages occur because the person responsible for maintaining the property is negligent, you can expect lawsuits to occur. If you sustained injuries and are filing a claim, locate a Denton private property premises lawyer to help you with the legal work.
A skilled legal professional could answer your questions and help you throughout the challenging premises liability claim process. Keep in mind that you must file the civil case within the state’s requirements. Call today to prepare your case tomorrow.