Imagine you are in a grocery store. You slip and fall on a piece of cabbage. Will the grocery store pay for your injuries? The answer to that question depends on the results of a premises liability claim. This kind of claim involves a lawsuit where a person alleges that he or she suffered an injury on someone else’s property because of the negligence of the premises’ owner or manager.
Necessary elements for a premises liability claim to prevail
The most common varieties of premises liability claims are slip and fall cases, where the injured party slips and falls because of a wet spot or hazardous object on the ground. The plaintiff alleges that the property owner was at fault because:
The hazard had been present for a long enough period that the owner, manager or one of their employees ought to have removed it as a matter of routine maintenance, or
Other employees were near the hazard at the time of the injury and should have seen and removed it
In short, if the property owner or his employees did not maintain the property with reasonable care or did not have the proper maintenance procedures to clean the property on a frequent basis, the owner could be at-fault in a premises liability claim.
Case example: slipping and falling on a leafy substance in a grocery store
In the case of Straughter v. Harvey Company Inc., the Georgia plaintiff ?who fell on a leafy substance in Harvey Company’s grocery store ?was successful at trial. Although there were no employees present at the time of Straughter's fall, and it could not be ascertained how long the leafy substance that caused the accident had been on the ground, the owner failed to provide evidence of adequate maintenance procedures. Since they did not have routine inspection standards, Harvey Company was deemed at fault in this premises liability case.