What Is Premises Liability?


Property owners have a responsibility to keep their property safe and free of hazards. When property owners are negligent and someone is injured due to unsafe conditions on the premises, those owners may be held legally responsible.

Examples of common accidents that can fall under the umbrella of premises liability include the following:

  • Slip and fall accidents, which often take place on icy, wet or oily surfaces.
  • Trip and fall accidents, which may be due to faulty or uneven construction, debris or inadequate lighting.
  • Accidents caused by falling objects or merchandise.

These accidents can happen in many types of places, including on sidewalks, in stores, restaurants, stadiums, parking lots, shopping malls, rental properties and private homes. If a property owner was aware of a potential hazard and did nothing to remedy the problem, should have been aware of the hazard if they were reasonably diligent, or created the hazard on their property, he or she may be liable for injuries sustained as a result of that hazard.

While planners and contractors have a responsibility to construct safe structures and designs that conform to code, the long-term maintenance of property is the responsibility of the owner. Under New Jersey law, in most cases it is not possible to recover damages for injuries resulting from a deficiency in design or construction of an improvement in property from those who did the design and construction more than ten years after the construction was completed. However, a property owner who does not properly maintain the property may still be liable for injuries.

Posted in Personal Injury

Tagged  premises liability