When you sustain an injury on someone else’s property in Texas, certain laws come into play. The rules of premises liability are complex in Texas, and they vary greatly on a case-by-case basis. It is necessary to hire an experienced Austin premises liability attorney if you have suffered an injury due to an unsafe or hazardous premises. The Austin personal injury lawyers at Briggle & Polan, PLLC, have expertise in premises liability laws in Texas and are dedicated to fighting for the best possible compensation for traumatic injuries related to slips, trips, and falls.
Property Owner Responsibilities for Premises Liability in Austin
The outcome of a premises liability case relies greatly on your classification while present on the property. Property owners owe different levels of responsibilities toward the safety of visitors depending on the type of visitor.
The law classifies visitors on a premises as one of Three Types:
1. An Invitee.
An invitee is someone whom the property owner has invited to the property for business reasons. This would be the case for a retail store, bank, or other such establishment. Property owners owe the highest standards of care to invitees, and they must ensure that their properties are free from known hazards. They must also reasonably inspect for, discover, and remedy unknown hazards.
2. A Licensee.
Those who enter a property for social purposes, such as friends and family members, are licensees. Property owners must ensure safe premises conditions for licensees, repairing any known dangers and warning visitors of hazards that they have not yet fixed. However, property owners do not legally have to inspect and repair unknown hazards for licensees.
3. A Trespasser.
A trespasser is not authorized to be on a property, and the property owner does not owe him or her any standards of care other than not willfully injuring the trespasser. If an owner knows the trespasser is a frequent visitor to the property, the courts may make the owner responsible for damages in certain types of situations. If the trespasser is a child, the property owner has a duty to ensure the property is safe in the event of an interloping child who does not know better than to trespass on private property.
The courts will assess what category you fall into depending on the circumstances of your visit to the property and decide your case based on the duties the property owner owed you at the time of the accident.
Texas’ Comparative Negligence Laws
It is important to note that just because you sustained an injury on someone else’s property does not mean you immediately have a premises liability case. You have a burden of proof to show that the property owner’s negligence significantly contributed to your accident. Consult a premises liability lawyer in Austin to discuss your injury and find out if you likely have a case. The attorneys at Briggle & Polan, PLLC, handle all types of premises liability cases, including:
- Slip and Fall Cases
- Inadequate Premises Maintenance
- Defective or Dangerous Conditions on the Premises
- Insufficient Building Security
- Escalator and Elevator Accidents
- Swimming Pool Injuries
- Dog Bites
- Amusement Park Accidents
- Water Leaks, Flooding, and Fires
- Toxic Chemicals or Fumes
Texas abides by modified comparative negligence laws for personal injury accidents, meaning that the courts will award the plaintiff compensation based on his or her own percentage of fault. If the courts find you more than 50% at fault for a premises liability accident, such as if they deem that you could have reasonably seen and avoided the hazardous obstacle, you will not receive compensation.
Get a Competent Premises Liability Attorney in Austin on Your Side
If you suffered an injury on someone else’s property, the attorneys at Briggle & Polan, PLLC, can help. We will help you gather proof of a property owner’s negligence and obtain rightful compensation for your injuries.
Contact Briggle & Polan, PLLC to speak with an experienced and knowledgeable Austin premises liability attorney today! 512-472-1926