Category: Premises Liability

Premises Liability Cases

A Corpus Christi Lawyer Covers The Types Of Premises Liability Cases In Texas

Whenever you are injured on someone else’s property and this injury was the result of negligence or unsafe conditions, then under premises liability law the owner may be held liable for any damages incurred. A premises liability case is one of the most difficult kinds of cases to pursue in the state of Texas since they frequently are quite complicated and require the plaintiff to prove numerous elements in order for the case to be successful. Below we have given a breakdown of premises liability law in the state of Texas, including the elements that you have to prove in order for a case to be successful. A knowledgeable Corpus Christi premises liability lawyer at the Law Office Of Jerry J. Trevino will be able to assist you to see if your case is strong for premises liability as well as help you determine what is the best action to take.

Kinds of Premises Liability Cases in the State of Texas

There are several different kinds of liabilities that are encompassed by premises liability cases. It is critical to identify what type of premises liability case you are going to make since different elements have to be proven for each type.

1. Standard Premises Negligence Case

Typically standard premises negligence cases involve the claim that there was a dangerous circumstance or condition that involved the property that caused the plaintiff to be injured. For instance, if there was an extension cord that was strung over a room that was tripped over that would be grounds for the standard premises negligence case. To prove liability in that kind of case, the following would need to be established by the plaintiff:

  • There was a dangerous condition that existed on the property
  • An injury was caused by the condition
  • The premises owner operator knew, created, or should have been aware of the condition
  • The premises operator failed to get the condition corrected before the injury took place

2. Negligent Activity

A case involving negligent activity involves a claim where it is alleged that the plaintiff was injured by an employee of the defendant while working on their premises. For instance, if an employee hit a person while driving a forklift that could be grounds for the negligent activity case. To prove liability in this type of cases, the following must be established by the plaintiff:

  • The employee didn’t act the way a prudent individual would act under those same circumstances
  • Their behavior results in the plaintiff being injured

3. Negligent Undertaking

In this type of case, there is a claim that the property owner assumes a duty or obligation where she or he otherwise would not have one. This most frequently involves a tenant/landlord relationship in premises liability law. For instance, when a tenant informs the landlord of a maintenance issue and the landlord fails to get the problem fixed, and it results in an injury, then that can be grounds for the negligent undertaking case. To prove liability in this type of case, the following must be established by the plaintiff:

  • A duty was assumed by the premise operator to the plaintiff
  • The premise operator was relied on by the plaintiff to perform this duty
  • The premise operator failed to perform the duty and as a result, the plaintiff was injured

4. Negligent Activity Versus Premises Liability Cases

In premises liability law in the state of Texas, among the most critical distinctions that need to be drawn is the difference between a negligent activities case and standard premises liability case. That is important since more elements must be proven when it is a standard liability case compared to a negligent activities case. A negligent act occurs whenever there is an ongoing activity that causes a plaintiff to be injured. If it is not an ongoing act when the injury occurs, then the case will be considered to be a standard premises liability case instead. For instance, if something is spilled on the floor by an employee who then fails to clean it up, and then a customer is injured in a slip and fall accident, that could be considered to be a standard liability case, since the negligent acts weren’t ongoing when the injury occurred. If a loved one or you have suffered injuries due to another’s negligence, you should consider seeking compensation for the injuries. An experienced Corpus Christi premises liability lawyer will help fight your case to hold the party that is accountable for the actions they have taken.

If you need to speak with a Corpus Christi premises liability lawyer, contact the South Texas Law Offices of Jerry J. Treviño. To schedule a free consultation, call 361-882-5605.

Premises Liability Attorneys: Who Is Liable If I Trip On The Sidewalk In Corpus Christi?

Corpus Christi Premises Liability Lawyers: If I Trip On A Sidewalk, Who is Liable?

It might be funny to see someone stumbling and tripping in a movie, but if you have suffered an injury due to falling on a sidewalk, then most likely there was nothing about the situation that you found funny. In many cases, it might be hard to determine exactly who might be responsible, in order to receive compensation for your injuries. The following are some guidelines to help determine who is liable when you trip on a sidewalk. Contact qualified Corpus Christi Premises Liability Lawyers if you have any other questions.

Property Owner Negligence

To prove that somebody else is liable for your injuries, you must establish that the property owner was negligent. A fall caused by a sidewalk in poor repair or a damaged sidewalk might point to a property owner’s negligence. Slipper conditions such as ice on a sidewalk might also point towards negligence on the property owner’s part. To completely establish that your fall was caused by negligence, it has to be shown that the property owner either knew about the dangerous conditions, or should have known, and failed to warn those using the sidewalk of potential dangers and failed to repair the sidewalk. If you are interested in learning more about the Law Offices Of  Jerry J. Trevino, click here.

Government Liability Is A Complicated Subject

Who was responsible for keeping the sidewalk maintained that caused your injuries. This is often hard to determine. Often local municipalities set responsibility for keeping sidewalks maintained. That means that the property owner or the government might be a liability for your accident, and that will depend on the specific locality where your accident took place. A local government official such as a city council member might be able to supply you with information on local laws related to sidewalk maintenance. When it is determined that the local government was responsible for maintaining the sidewalk, remember that usually the time period to file a claim are much stricter when filing a claim against a governmental municipality and that often the compensation you can collect is limited as well.

Who Owns The Property?

If the owner of the property is the one who is responsible for keeping the sidewalk maintained you still might have some work to do to figure out who the responsible party is. A home resident or business owner might be just leasing the property and might not be the property owner. They might be responsible for the sidewalk or the property owner might retain the responsibility, depending on what the lease says. A real estate agent might be able to help you determine who the property owner is on vacant properties. Your local assessor’s office can assist you with finding the information based on the property’s address. Usually, those offices are located near or inside the courthouse.

Get Assistance From A Premises Liability Attorney

If you are still having a hard time determining who is liable for your injuries, a personal injury lawyer can provide you with valuable assistance. An attorney, during your free consultation, will advise you on either on the weaknesses and strengths of your case. They will be knowledgeable about property laws in your local area. An attorney will also be able to provide you with invaluable assistance in determining who is liable for your accident, and who the property owner is. With the strict time limits in place for filing personal injury claims, particularly against municipalities, it is strongly advised that you seek counsel as soon as possible to get the claims process started.

Meet our Corpus Christi Premises Liability Lawyers Make sure to Call or contact The Law Offices of Jerry J. Trevino for legal representation! Check out our blog for more related articles

Important Things Business Owners Should Understand About Premise Liability

An Introduction To Premise Liability For Business Owners

If you own a business, you most likely already are well aware of the risk of having someone slip or fall at your place of business. These types of accidents are notorious for causing lawsuits. In fact, it is hard to turn on the TV without seeing a personal injury attorney talking about how they can help viewers file a lawsuit against a business if they were injured in a preventable accident. Slip-and-fall accidents are only one type of liability that business owners need to be worried about, however. There are a ton of other things that can go wrong that could leave you open to a lawsuit. Anytime someone enters your property, you are responsible for keeping them safe. That responsibility includes preventing any type of harm to the people who work for your business, to your customers, and to businesses or homes that are located next to your property. If you are wondering whether you have a case, make sure to check out our case page.

Understanding Premise Liability In Texas

As a business owner, you have a responsibility to make sure that your building and the surrounding property are safe and well-maintained. Any time employees, customers, salespeople, or vendors step foot on your property, they should be protected from harm. Even if people break-in or trespass, they still may be able to sue you if they are injured as a result of negligence on your part. In most cases, you are responsible from a liability standpoint even if you don’t own the building. Most landlords put a clause that frees them from liability in their leases, making the tenant responsible for any problems that occur on the property. As a result, any lawsuits against your landlord could wind up costing you since your lease stipulates that you are liable for accidents or injuries that occur on the property. It is important that you understand the fundamentals of premises liability texas regulations.

Things That Can Go Wrong With Premise Liability Accidents In Texas

Apart from slip and fall accidents, there are countless things that can go wrong. Premise liability Texas covers a wide range of accidents and mishaps. For instance, if someone is attacked on your property by an employee or by another customer, you could be held liable. Similarly, if your equipment malfunctions and injures someone or if hazardous runoff from your property affects a nearby home or business, you are on the hook in terms of liability. What it really boils down to is that you can be held liable for any type of accident, damage, or injury that could have been prevented by your actions. If you do wind up facing a lawsuit over premise liability, it could negatively impact your business in a number of ways. Not only can it harm your company’s image but it can also leave you facing steep legal fees – some of which may not be covered by your liability insurance policy.

Safety Should Be A Top Priority

Although there is no way to prevent every accident, there are steps that you can take to protect yourself. One of the most important steps is to purchase a liability insurance policy for your company. These policies are relatively affordable and provide a significant amount of coverage. A good insurance policy can help protect you if an accident does occur. Once you have an insurance plan in place, you should take the following steps to make sure that your property is as safe as possible:

  • Perform regular inspections of the premises

It is absolutely essential to make sure that your property is completely safe and that there are no dangerous conditions that could result in an accident. To this end, you should conduct regular inspections. You should also train your employees on how to spot potential problems. Even though it may seem like it would take too much time to constantly monitor your property, it is absolutely essential to the well-being of your business. Spotting problems before accidents occur is the best way to avoid lawsuits.

  • Fix any problems right away

The moment that an issue is discovered, take steps to correct it. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that someone else will take care of the problem. Instead, the first person to discover the problem should be the one to immediately fix it. This includes spilled liquids, lumpy floor mats, slippery ice, or other potential hazards. Have a plan in place and make sure all employees are properly trained on how to deal with any hazards that they encounter.

  • Put up warning signs to avoid unwanted accidents

If a problem can’t be fixed right away, make sure to put up warning signs, letting people know that hazardous conditions exist. For example, if you have recently mopped the floor, make sure to put up plenty of signs indicating that the floor is wet so that people don’t accidentally slip on the surface. When dealing with premise liability Texas businesses can’t afford to cut corners. As a business owner, it is your job to protect your company from potential lawsuits. You can accomplish this by making sure your business is properly insured and by addressing any hazardous conditions immediately rather than letting them go.

Call or contact The Law Offices of Jerry J. Trevino for legal representation! Check out our blog for more related articles.

A Corpus Christi Attorney Says Pictures Are Used As Evidence After A Workplace Injury

The Importance In Taking Photos Of A Falling Accident Or Workplace Injury

There’s a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. After a workplace accident, however, a picture can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in the correct situation. Having visual evidence of the exact situation that caused you to slip, fall, and hurt yourself can help a great deal as you work to prove your liability claim in court.

In some states, for example, in order to prove a liability claim, the plaintiff must prove that the establishment had actual knowledge of the conditions and should have taken action to remedy the situation. This means that the business or its employees knew about the spill or that they actually created the spill themselves. The other means of proving this type of case, which is known as constructive knowledge, requires that one demonstrate that the owner or employees should have known about the spill and should have taken care to inspect and clean up the location. You should consider hiring a workplace injury attorney to represent you.

A Picture Is Used As Evidence

If you have a photo of the conditions of the area where you slipped and fell, it will show the color of the spilled material, its texture, and any track marks. This can all be important evidence of how long the spill remained in the area before it was cleaned up. The longer the spill was there before it was cleaned, the greater of a chance the plaintiff has to prove that the business owner was aware of it and should have cleaned it up. After this spill is cleaned, however, that evidence will be gone for all time.

If you trip and fall, it’s also just as important that you take similar photos. If there was a dangerous situation on the premises that led you to trip, taking the time to capture a photo on your phone or with a camera will help protect you, just in case the property owner tries to fix it before you can have it inspected by someone else. Protect yourself legally by taking a few seconds to take a picture, before the evidence you need can be tampered with or destroyed forever.

Taking photos of the conditions that caused your accident or fall is very helpful, but it is not required in order to have a legal case. If you did not think ahead of time to take photographs but were injured in a fall, there are multiple avenues that our attorneys can go down to help you prove your case in a court of law.

Call or contact us today for more information regarding your case. Visit our blog for more on what you should look for in your hire for representation!

Always Ask Your Corpus Christi Premises Liability Attorney These Questions Before Hiring

Questions To Ask Your Premises Liability Lawyer in Corpus Christi

When you slip and fall on someone’s property, you probably have more questions than answers. Who will pay my medical bills? What about my lost wages? Will I get a settlement? Will I have to file a lawsuit?

Friends and family members may try to answer your questions. Even total strangers will gladly tell you what to do. Unfortunately, the advice you receive won’t likely resolve your concerns. That’s why it’s important to consult with a premises liability attorney when you have inquiries about your slip and fall or any other accident.

During your initial consultation, a legal professional provides information and explains your options. Whether or not you decide to pursue your injury claim, you will leave your attorney’s office more informed than when you entered. To make your first meeting more productive, use these five questions as a framework for your discussion.

  1. What can a premises liability attorney do for me?

A premises liability law firm is a team with the legal expertise to analyze your case and explain the legal issues. When your attorney accepts your case, the firm follows a step-by-step process to resolve your injury claim.

Investigate the incident – An investigator will contact witnesses, obtain formal reports, examine and photograph the property, and discuss your version.

Analyze liability issues – Your attorney will review the premises liability laws that apply to your case to determine if the property owner is legally responsible for your injuries.

Evaluate your injuries – Attorneys obtain medical bills, doctor reports, disability statements, and wage loss information to establish a value for your injury claim.

Negotiate and settle your case – Your attorney will present your case to the property owner, his insurance company, or their legal representatives. If possible, your attorney will resolve your case without filing suit.

  1. Should I talk to the insurance company’s liability adjuster?

If an insurance company adjuster contacts you, it’s best to let your attorney handle the request. Liability adjusters are usually polite and professional, but they represent the property owner and the insurance company that hired them. Even if you understand the issues, you could say something that might jeopardize your claim.

Of course, your injury claim can’t move forward until all parties share the facts. If everyone cooperates, this can be accomplished informally without costly depositions. Your attorney will control any one-on-one discussions with a liability adjuster. With proper legal guidance, you will avoid the problems caused by misstatements or misunderstandings.

  1. How do I prove the property owner is at fault?

When you are injured on someone else’s premises, the property owner isn’t automatically at fault. Each state or local jurisdiction has statutes and case law that govern an owner’s duties. Your legal representatives will investigate your case and explain any liability complications you must overcome to prove your case and recover damages.

  1. How do pay my attorney’s fees?

Premises liability attorneys usually take your case on a contingency basis. This means they receive payment only if they settle your claim or get a favorable judgment in court. The contingency fee is based on a percentage of the money your attorney recovers on your behalf. The percentage will be higher if your attorney must file a lawsuit or try the case in court.

  1. Who pays my medical bills and lost wages while I wait for a settlement?

Medical providers want their bills paid immediately. They won’t wait until you settle your case. To avoid collection issues, you should submit your bills to your own health insurance company. Also, if the property owner has Premises Medical Payments coverage, his insurance company may contribute to your medical bills. Med Pay coverage usually pays regardless of fault.

Lost wages are a bit more complicated. If your job doesn’t have a sick pay plan, you may have limited options while waiting for your case to settle. You could exhaust your savings, return to work, or find an alternate source of income.

  1. How long will it take to settle my claim?

The timing for settling an injury claim is usually unpredictable. Your attorney won’t begin negotiating your claim until the parties involved resolve these and other issues.

  • You must recover from your injuries and complete treatment.
  • Your attorney must decide what your case is worth and present his demand to the property owner’s insurance company.
  • The insurance company must be willing to settle. If the insurance company denies liability, your attorney may have to file a lawsuit.

7. How much will I get for my claim?

Each injury case has a unique value. Your attorney can provide general information about past settlements in your area for cases like yours. Still, the amount of your settlement will depend on a number of factors.

  • Your injury and diagnosis
  • The dollar amount of your medical bills and lost wages
  • The extent of your disability
  • The nature of any scarring
  • Whether or not you were negligent in causing your injury

A legal professional can help When you fall on someone else’s property, there are a lot of issues to consider. You need a knowledgeable professional to manage your case and protect your legal rights. It’s important to consult with a premises liability attorney before you jeopardize your chances of recovering the damages to which you are legally entitled.

Call or contact The Law Offices of Jerry J. Trevino for more information.

Premises Liability: Concerns During A Slip and Fall Case

In a Texas Slip and Fall, When is a Warning Adequate?

Recently, the plaintiff in a Texas slip and fall case walked around the sign warning of a wet floor . the sign was situated in the hall right outside the bathroom in the convenience store owned by the defendant. Located at the back of the store, the restrooms could be accessed via an open entry which led to a small hall.

Surveillance footage showed the yellow warning sign which displayed “wet floor” and was placed in the entry. As the plaintiff turned the corner to walk into the hall leading to the restroom, he walked right past this sign. The plaintiff also walked right past the employee who at the moment had been wet-mopping the floor. As the plaintiff was in the restroom, the employee proceeded to wet-mop the entrance, right where the sign was placed. While mopping she moved the sign, mopped the spot where it was, and then returned it to its original spot.

Two minutes after entering the restroom, the plaintiff exited the restroom and slipped falling on the wet floor in the hallway on a few feet from where the sign was located. He was injured and the defendants were sued based on premises liability for personal injuries. The plaintiff, as a customer, under Texas law was considered to be an invitee to the store.

The plaintiffs’ argument was that the defendant had not provided proper warnings of said dangerous conditions and had failed to make the conditions adequately safe. A motion for summary judgment was filed by the defendant, the argument in it was that there was zero evidence of a breach, the warning provided was adequate, and the condition being discussed was open and very obvious. It also argued the lack of evidence of any risk of harm that was unreasonable or that reasonable care had not been used to lower the risk.

There was no specification by the trial court as to why the motion for summary judgment was granted. An appeal was submitted by the plaintiff.

It was explained by the appellate court that an injured invitee in a premises liability lawsuit must show:

1. The owner had constructive or actual knowledge of the condition which caused harm.

2. Unreasonable risk of harm was presented by the condition

3. The owner had not taken reasonable care to minimize the risk.

4. The failure of the property owner to use reasonable care so as to lower the level of risk was what legally caused the injuries of the invitee. By providing warning of a dangerous condition where invitees can see, a property owner is able to get rid of the third element.

The totality of the circumstances is what dictates where or not a warning is sufficient. When the warning has identified and communicated the existence of said condition in a manner that is understood by a reasonable person, it is considered to be adequate. It was explained by the appellate court that there were numerous facts which were undisputed. It is indisputable that there was indeed a yellow, three-foot, free standing warning sign located at the hall´s entrance which only led to the bathroom and said warning sign referred to the employee who was mopping. There was a graphic at the top of the sign that displayed a human being stick figure that was slipping and also stated “wet floor” and “caution.”

The questions that remained were whether or not this was adequate and whether it was an obvious and open danger. The plaintiffs’ argument of it being inadequate was because when he entered the restroom, there was not a wet floor, however, when he came out it was wet and the sign was not placed directly in front of the door. It was explained by the appellate court that there is no duty for the invitees´ safety to be ensured and the plaintiff had received ample warning prior to his fall. There had been active mopping in the area. It was noted by the dissenting opinion that there had been a changed condition of the floor in the hallway, however, the majority found that what following the dissent would require, was too granular of a warning.

If you have been injured on someone else´s property, you should see immediate consultation with an attorney in Corpus Christi who is knowledgeable on the subject of personal injury and experienced in liability cases so a favorable outcome can be sought. Consult the Corpus Christi attorneys from The Law Offices of Jerry J. Trevino, they are experienced and can provide you with more information.