Businesses open to the public owe their customers and others on their premises a very high legal duty of care. One of these duties is to provide adequate security for their premises, whether through a sufficient number of security guards, proper lighting, and security cameras in working order. If an individual suffers injuries in a third-party attack on someone else's premises due to inadequate security, the premises owner may be liable for the resulting injuries and damages.
If you recently sustained injuries in a premises accident that likely resulted from inadequate security, you have legal options that you should consider. In addition to seeking prompt medical treatment for your injuries, consult a San Antonio premises liability attorney as quickly as possible. Your attorney can review all of your legal options with you and provide you with the information necessary to make informed and intelligent decisions during your case.
Throughout a premises liability case, your lawyer can handle every aspect of the process, including gathering the necessary documentation and submitting a settlement demand package to the handling insurance company adjuster on your behalf. Your lawyer can also handle all settlement negotiations with insurance company representatives in pursuit of a favorable settlement offer in your case. Finally, if litigation becomes necessary, your lawyer can represent you in all legal proceedings and aggressively advocate for you during every step.
A premises liability lawyer near you can answer all your legal questions and pursue the maximum monetary compensation for your injuries.
What is a Business' Legal Duty of Care to its Customers?
Businesses owe their customers and potential customers a very high legal duty of care. When customers enter business premises, they trust that the premises will be safe and free from hazards, including criminal activity. Businesses are legally responsible for maintaining their premises in a reasonably safe condition at all times and taking reasonable measures to protect against third-party attacks and similar incidents that others may cause.
For example, depending upon the type of commercial establishment, a business may have a duty to maintain a certain number of security cameras in various locations, such as in parking lots and garages, and ensure that these cameras are in working order at all times. A business may also have a duty to maintain sufficient security guards or other personnel on duty – such as at a club or bar – especially during busy hours. If a customer suffers an injury in a third-party attack that results from a business' inadequate security presence on the premises, the customer can file a premises liability claim with the property owner's insurance company.
A skilled premises liability lawyer can determine if a property owner likely violated their legal duty of care by having an inadequate security presence on their property. If so, your lawyer may file a personal injury claim with the property owner's insurer on your behalf, submit a settlement demand package, and begin negotiating favorable settlement compensation for your injuries.
Proving a Negligent Security Case
To recover monetary compensation as part of an inadequate security claim or lawsuit, a victim's lawyer must establish various legal elements. First, they must demonstrate that the property owner owed them a legal duty of reasonable care. Next, they must show that the property owner violated their legal obligation by failing to maintain sufficient security guards or cameras on their premises.
Additionally, the victim must show that as a direct result of the property owner's breach, a third-party attack or other incident occurred in which they suffered one or more physical injuries.
In some instances, inadequate security claims can be challenging to prove. To show that the property owner violated their legal duty of care, your lawyer can retain an accident reconstructionist or another expert who can visit the scene and determine whether the business was likely responsible for inadequate security on their premises. Additionally, your attorney can retain a medical expert who can causally relate your injury or injuries to the third-party incident on someone else's property. Also, depending on your circumstances, a medical expert may establish that one or more of your injuries are permanent.
Upon suffering injuries in an incident that occurs on someone else's premises, obtain medical treatment as quickly as possible. In addition to seeking follow-up medical care at a hospital emergency room or urgent care center, you should follow through on all recommended treatment options. For example, you may need to follow up with your primary care doctor, if you have one, or consult with a medical specialist, like a neurologist or orthopedic doctor, depending on the extent of your injuries. Additionally, you may undergo surgery or other medical procedures and attend postoperative follow-up appointments.
Completing your medical treatment regimen significantly increases your chances of obtaining a full medical recovery. You also show the property owner's insurance company that you suffered severe injuries in the occurrence and that you deserve to receive favorable and compensatory monetary damages.
While you focus on recovering from your injuries, a knowledgeable premises liability lawyer can start investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident, determine precisely how it occurred, and determine who was responsible for it. Your lawyer can then file a personal injury claim with the property owner's insurance company and start negotiating for the settlement compensation you deserve for your related losses and medical complications.
Filing a Successful Personal Injury Claim Based upon Negligent Security
A knowledgeable premises liability lawyer can file a personal injury claim with the at-fault property owner's insurance company, seeking various types of monetary damages. First, your lawyer will prepare a settlement demand letter, which demands financial compensation within the property owner's available insurance policy coverage limits. Additionally, your lawyer can gather the various documents necessary to satisfy the legal elements of your claim. Those documents may include copies of police reports, incident reports, medical bills, medical records, lost income documents (if you did not work for some time after your accident), photographs of your injuries, photographs of the occurrence scene, security camera footage which shows the incident happening in real-time, and statements from eyewitnesses to the occurrence.
Once the insurance company reviews all of this documentation, they will decide about whether to accept fault for the occurrence and your injuries. In some premises liability cases, insurance companies may try to deny fault for the occurrence, alleging that the business took all of the necessary precautions and that the incident was beyond their control. However, your lawyer can point to documentation that shows otherwise, such as witness statements and camera footage of the incident. Your lawyer can also obtain various documents from the property owner as part of the litigation discovery process, including employee logs, security personnel logs, and information regarding security camera locations for the business. Your attorney may then use this documentation to pursue favorable monetary compensation in your case.
Finally, your lawyer can threaten the insurance with personal injury litigation if the insurance company refuses to compensate you fairly for your injuries. If litigation becomes necessary, your lawyer will handle every step of the process for you, including filing a lawsuit in the court system, preparing for a discovery deposition, and answering written Interrogatories. If your case must proceed to a civil jury trial, mediation session, or binding arbitration proceeding, your lawyer can aggressively represent you and help maximize the monetary compensation you recover.
For example, at a civil jury trial or binding arbitration proceeding, your lawyer may call witnesses to testify on your behalf, introduce medical documentation and other evidence, and argue for your right to recover the fair monetary compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Recovering Favorable Monetary Compensation and Damages in Your Case
The physical and emotional injuries that a person suffers while on someone else's premises can be extremely severe. A seriously injured victim may need ongoing medical treatment at considerable expense. They may also miss time from work, losing a significant amount of income.
Fortunately, victims who can satisfy the legal burden of proof in their case can receive various types of monetary compensation and damages. First, a victim may seek compensation for all their medical expenses, both past and anticipated. If a medical provider determines that the victim suffered a permanent injury, the victim can recover compensation for their anticipated ongoing medical costs.
Next, a victim who had to miss time from work after the incident can claim lost earnings. Similarly, if their injuries prevent them from working at their current job and they have to accept a lower rate of pay because of a job switch, they may pursue compensation for loss of earning capacity.
In addition to these economic damages, victims may also pursue compensation for their intangible losses. These monetary damages compensate victims for all of their:
- Loss of ability to use a body part (such as from a paralysis injury)
- Lost quality of life
- Mental distress
- Past and future pain and suffering
- Permanent disfigurement or scarring
- Long-term care costs
- Loss of spousal companionship and consortium
Your premises liability attorney can maximize the compensation you automatically receive through a favorable settlement offer from the property owner's insurance company or a favorable litigation result in the court system.
You Can Afford to Hire a Premises Liability Attorney
You might hesitate to call law firms because of financial concerns. When you already face piles of bills and lost income, how can you pay legal fees?
Premises liability attorneys often work on a contingency basis, meaning they only collect fees if they secure compensation for their clients. This arrangement allows injury victims to seek legal representation without upfront costs.
Contingency fees typically consist of a percentage of the settlement or court award. This approach aligns the attorney's interests with those of the injured party, ensuring dedicated advocacy in pursuing compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages resulting from premises-related accidents.
Consultations are free, and anyone can afford to hire a lawyer to handle their inadequate security case.
Call an Experienced Premises Liability Lawyer in Your Area Right Away
If you recently sustained injuries in a third-party attack that occurred on someone else's premises, your attorney can file a personal injury claim for inadequate security. However, time is of the essence in a claim such as this. Under the state statute of limitations, victims must file a personal injury claim or lawsuit within two years of their occurrence date. Otherwise, they will likely forfeit their right to recover any monetary damages for their injuries and other losses.
Sometimes, people might think their injury case is simple and they can interact with the insurance company independently. Thinking this is nearly always a mistake. Insurance companies are large, for-profit organizations that are not on your side. They have teams of adjusters and attorneys who will look for any reason to deny claims. Often, they try to find reasons to blame victims for the injuries they suffer.
A skilled and compassionate premises liability attorney in your area can go over all of your legal options with you and embark on a successful course of action for your case. In addition to investigating your circumstances, your lawyer can gather the documents necessary to prove your claim, negotiate aggressively with insurance company representatives, and, if necessary, pursue a favorable result in the court system on your behalf. Your personal injury lawyer in San Antonio will do everything they can to ensure that you receive the total compensation you deserve to recover to become whole again.