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In Pennsylvania, as in other states, property owners have a legal responsibility to visitors. They must perform proper, routine maintenance and either remove, repair, or warn potential visitors about dangerous conditions or hazards that could cause someone to be injured. If a property owner fails to take these measures, they could be held liable for any accidents, injuries, or damages that result.
If you were injured on someone else’s property—whether it was a private home, a business, or even a public park—you could be entitled to financial compensation for your resulting medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. Because these types of cases tend to be fairly complex, it is a good idea to consult an experienced and knowledgeable premises liability attorney, like those at Luxenberg Garbett Kelly & George, before filing your claim.
Our National Board of Trial Advocacy Board-Certified Civil Trial Specialists can review the details of your potential claim and determine who may be liable for your damages. We offer compassionate, client-focused representation and a high level of personal attention, service, and support. We have multiple offices and serve clients throughout Western Pennsylvania.
We've been designated Pennsylvania Super Lawyers for over 15 years, and we have Martindale-Hubbell’s highest rating for legal ability and ethics as determined by peers in the legal community.
We have been a staple in this community for over 80 years representing our friends and neighbors.
ResultsWe have recovered over $200 million in verdicts and settlements for our clients.
IntegrityAt LGKG, we do what we say we are going to do. Earning your trust is paramount to us, and we've been keeping our promises for over 80 years.
ExperienceOur team has over 100 years of combined legal experience.
CommitmentAt LGKG, it's not about us, it's about you.
What Is Premises Liability?
Premises liability is an area of personal injury law that deals with the responsibility property owners have to those who visit their properties.
Pennsylvania recognizes three different types of property visitors:
- Invitee: An invitee is someone who visits a property for a business-related purpose, such as a customer in a grocery store
- Licensee: A licensee is someone who visits a property for a personal or social purpose, such as a houseguest or meter inspector
- Trespasser: A trespasser is someone who unlawfully enters a property without the consent and/or knowledge of the property owner
Property owners owe the highest duty of care to invitees, followed by licensees. To invitees, property owners have a responsibility to maintain the property and repair, remove, or warn of dangerous conditions or hazards. To licensees, property owners have a responsibility to simply warn of potential hazards and dangerous conditions that could cause foreseeable injury. The only responsibility property owners have to trespassers in Pennsylvania is to refrain from causing intentional injury or harm.
What Is Considered a “Dangerous” Property Condition?
A “dangerous” property condition is any condition or hazard that could cause foreseeable injury to another. In other words, if a typical person would know that a certain condition might cause someone to be injured, the condition is considered “dangerous.”
Some examples of dangerous property conditions include:
- Potholes, cracks, and other tripping hazards
- Accumulated ice or snow
- Wet, slippery, or recently mopped or waxed floors
- Uneven floors or ripped carpeting
- Cluttered walkways and aisles
- Spills or fallen merchandise/items
- Insufficient lighting and poor visibility
- Attractive nuisances, such as trampolines
- Missing or broken security cameras
- Negligent, careless, or poorly trained security guards
- Loose animals, including dogs
- Defective conditions or features, such as elevators
- Unsafe swimming pools, including those without proper barriers
- mproper or missing signage, including caution signs and exit signs
These and other unsafe conditions can lead to an array of accidents, from slips and falls to dog bites to parking lot assaults, accidental drownings, and more. These types of incidents can leave victims with severe, even catastrophic injuries; some may even be fatal.
At Luxenberg Garbett Kelly & George, we believe that negligent property owners should be held accountable. Our New Castle premises liability lawyers are committed to fighting for the rights of the injured and the families of those wrongfully killed, and insurance companies know that we are not afraid to take our clients’ cases to trial if necessary.
Proving Property Owner Liability
To have a premises liability case, there are several things that you, as the plaintiff, must prove:
- Duty of Care: You will need to prove that the property owner owed you a duty of care, meaning they had a legal responsibility to prevent you from becoming injured. This typically involves establishing your status as a visitor, whether an invitee or licensee.
- Breach: You will also need to prove that the property owner breached the duty of care they owed to you, whether by failing to adequately remove, repair, or warn you of a dangerous condition or by failing to properly maintain the premises.
- Causation: An important element of a successful premises liability case is proving causation, or the fact that the property owner’s actions or inactions were the direct or proximate cause of your injuries. This often, but not always, requires the testimony of expert witnesses.
- Actual Damages: Lastly, to have a case, you must prove that you sustained measurable (or “actual”) damages related to your injuries, such as medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, lost enjoyment of life, etc.
Our New Castle premises liability attorneys work with accident reconstructionists, medical professionals, and other industry experts to obtain important evidence in support of our clients’ claims. We know how to prove that the property owner knew about or reasonably should have known about a dangerous condition, yet failed to take the proper and necessary steps to remove, repair, or warn visitors about the condition. We also know how to prove that this is what led to your injuries and resulting damages, as well as the extent of those damages and your right to fair compensation.
Turn to Our Trusted Premises Liability Lawyers for the Legal Help You Need
Whether you slipped and fell in a grocery store, were assaulted in a poorly lit parking lot that didn’t have security cameras, or were injured when visiting a friend or family member, Luxenberg Garbett Kelly & George can help you seek the fair compensation you are owed. We understand the sensitive and complicated nature of these cases, and we know how to effectively advocate for you and your recovery.
At LGKG, we take the time to really get to know our clients and build genuine relationships with them. We don’t just say that we care; we prove that we will go the extra mile for our clients through our actions and our willingness to do everything we can to help them get back on their feet. When you trust your case to our firm, you do not owe any attorney fees or litigation-related costs unless we secure a settlement or verdict on your behalf.
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