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Premises liability law provides that the owner of a property (as well as the owner's employees) has the responsibility to keep the property in a reasonably safe condition.

This means that a property owner must keep his or her premises clean and safe from various hazards. A grocery store owner has the responsibility to clean up puddles of liquid or broken packages on the floor as soon as he is aware of them. A restaurant owner is obligated to ensure that the floor of her restaurant is clean and that any spilled food is picked up promptly, and a gas station owner is required to shovel snow and ice from the parking lot or sidewalk in front of his service station.

If a property owner fails to meet these types of safety requirements, the owner may have breached his duty to provide his customers with a reasonably safe environment. As a result, a customer may be entitled to compensation if he or she is injured due to these types of hazardous conditions.

WHAT DOES A PREMISES LIABILITY ATTORNEY DO?

A premises liability attorney is an attorney who specializes in cases of property owner negligence. A premises liability attorney can help you determine if you really do have a good case. Premises liability cases always depend on the particular facts of the accident. It is important to investigate the behavior of both the property owner and the person who was injured. In order to be held responsible for any type of premises liability case, the owner of the premises:

  • must cause the dangerous condition...or
  • must know of the dangerous condition but do nothing to remove it or warn customers about it; or
  • should know about the dangerous condition because any reasonable person taking care of the property would discover and remove or repair that danger within the same period of time.

As a result, the length of time that the hazardous condition existed before an injury occurs is very important to a premises liability case. Timing is crucial to determine whether a property owner had either actual or constructive notice of a dangerous condition prior to a customer's injury. Take, for example, a situation in which a person slips and falls in a restaurant on ketchup spilled when a bottle was dropped on the floor. In this scenario, the restaurant owner may be liable if she knew about the spilled ketchup but took no action to clean it up or warn customers to be careful in that area. This would constitute actual notice, because the store's owner actually knew about the spill. However, the restaurant owner might also be liable even if she never actually knew about the spilled ketchup. This would be true if the spilled ketchup had been on the floor for such a long period of time that any other reasonable restaurant owner would have discovered and cleaned that spill within that same length of time. This is called constructive notice. This means that property owners are responsible for periodically inspecting their premises to check on the cleanliness and safety of the property.

Another hazardous condition often found in a restaurant is a greasy kitchen floor. This grease can be tracked into the dining area as well if not cleaned properly. Greasy floors can lead to slip and fall accidents. This would be a hazardous situation.... Read more on How to clean a restaurant kitchen floor with Slip Resistant Solutions Cleaner Degreaser.