Every year in Mobile, people are injured when they slip and fall on wet floors, stairs, uneven ground, or other unmarked obstacles. Sometimes a fall is minor, but people can also be seriously hurt. While each of us has responsibility to watch where we are going, sometimes that is not possible. Under the laws of premises liability, the owner of a property also has responsibilities, and if they are not met, the property owner may be held liable for an accident.
Determining liability in slip and fall cases can be complicated. There are legal criteria that must be met in order to prove a slip and fall case. To prove that the property owner is legally responsible for the accident, one of the following circumstances must be true:
- Either the property owner or an employee caused the dangerous surface to be underfoot through negligence or intentional actions.
- The property owner or an employee knew about the dangerous conditions, but did not do anything about it.
- An employee or the property owner failed to do what a “reasonable” person would have done to discover and respond to the conditions.
It may be difficult to know what is considered “reasonable”, but a judge may decide based on the property owner’s regular maintenance or efforts to keep the premises clean and safe, on the length of time the conditions were present, or other criteria.