Filed under: Blog, Premises Liability, Slip & Fall
Can a Landlord Be Held Liable in a Slip and Fall Accident?
Being involved in a slip and fall accident is common, but can be very scary because it can lead to some serious injuries. These injuries that can come from a slip and fall accident can…Read more
Being involved in a slip and fall accident is common, but can be very scary because it can lead to some serious injuries. These injuries that can come from a slip and fall accident can hold you back from work and maybe even cause you to need medical treatment. If you are renting an apartment or a house, you will have a landlord that owns the property. Landlords are required to keep the property free from dangers that could cause a slip and fall, so you don’t get injured. If you do get injured from a slip and fall accident, you may be able to file a landlord liability claim if it is caused by your landlord’s negligence. However, circumstances vary, and your landlord may or may not be liable for your injury. You should discuss your particular situation with an attorney experienced in slip and fall accidents.
Landlords are not always liable for every accident and injury that occurs on their property. If you are injured, the first thing you need to do is prove that your injury was caused by a negligent accident by your landlord. Two examples would be proving your landlord created an unsafe condition that led to the slip and fall, or knew about the hazard and did nothing to correct it. For example, if there has been a leak under your sink for a while and it caused the floor to be wet, causing you to slip and fall, your landlord may be liable. The question if your landlord would be held liable would depend on if they knew about the leak or not. If you were not home and the leak began to happen, causing you to slip when you got home, your landlord would not be held liable because there is no way they would have known about the leak. If you mentioned the leak to your landlord before and they neglected it, they could be held liable for your injuries. In the lease, the landlord will have stated your responsibilities as a tenant, and that will be used in court to determine if they are held liable or not.
Exterior Slip and Fall
There are certain conditions where your landlord could be held liable on a slip and fall in the backyard or in the front of the property. For example, if you were in front of your house on the sidewalk and slipped and fell due to a bunch of snow and ice there, your landlord may be liable. The landlord’s liability will all depend on what is stated in the lease, and if he is responsible for shoveling snow outside of the property. If in the lease it states you are responsible for any outdoor cleaning, such as shoveling the snow, then you are responsible for the slip and fall and they will not be held liable. Another example could be the exterior stairs of your house or apartment. If the stairs are defective in some way, including being broken or violating relevant building codes, that would be a firm case for the tenant that the landlord is likely at fault. If the tenant slipped and fell on the stairs due to a foreign substance that spilled on the stairs, the tenant will most likely be responsible for it because the landlord would have no way of knowing that there was a foreign substance spilled on the stairs.
If you do get injured due to a slip and fall accident, you must take photos of where it happened, your injuries, and any other important details that would be brought up in court. It is very unlikely that you would win a slip and fall case if you showed no evidence of any injuries or the condition of where it happened. Having a visual record means a lot in court and can be the deciding factor in determining whether or not the landlord will be held liable for a slip and fall accident.
Proving liability in a slip and fall accident can be very difficult, which is why having a trusted legal team represent you is highly recommended to ensure you receive compensation. Here at Richard Harris Personal Injury Law Firm, our experienced attorneys will teach you about the rights you have as a tenant, and what the next step is moving forward. A slip and fall can lead to serious injuries, and we want to help you from being held liable if it was due to the negligence of your landlord.
Filed under: Slip & Fall
I’ve been injured at my apartment complex: What Now?
Apartment Injury Lawyer in Nevada An injury in your apartment complex may be the liability of the landlord under certain circumstances. Property owners including landlords are required to provide a habitable and safe environment…Read more
Apartment Injury Lawyer in Nevada
An injury in your apartment complex may be the liability of the landlord under certain circumstances.
Property owners including landlords are required to provide a habitable and safe environment and maintain the premises to minimize danger to residents and guests.
Your chances of success in a premise liability case have to do with proving the property owner was liable due to negligence in some way.
You should consult with a permise accident lawyer shortly after an injury in an apartment complex to see that your rights are protected.
Because renters are constantly turning over, the management of these complexes will often times take shortcuts in various aspects of the property.
By not maintaining the grounds and repairing things in a timely manner, the safety of both visitors and residents is in jeopardy.
Even small items can cause big issues which is why it is imperative that the management and superintendents of these complexes stay on top of things.
Poor management can contribute to more injuries on the property which ends up costing them more money in the long run.
Regardless of the situation, it is the duty of all parties involved (residents, management, visitors) to take reasonable precautions to ensure their safety.
When you do that though and are still injured due to negligence of the apartment complex’s management you should contact the Richard Harris Law firm for help.
Injuries at Apartment Complex
From a head injury, to broken bones and cuts or bruises, along with sprained ankles or a concussion, if you’ve been injured at an apartment building then call us today.
Many types of injuries can occur in an apartment complex and the following list is just a small sample:
Slip & Fall
This could be for any reason but one common way is if the sprinkler system is malfunctioned where water is spraying on a curb or walkway causing someone to slip and injure themselves.
If there is a security guard that is not doing their job properly and which allows people to come into the complex who are not a visitor or a resident that can be a problem, especially if there is some kind of injury to a resident. The injury does not even have to be intentional. For example someone who does not belong in the complex could cause a car accident with a resident.
Trip & Fall
There are many examples of this type of apartment accident. If there are uneven walkways or obstructions that were either put in place by management or left in the spot for a longer than reasonable time then that could be negligence on the part of the management. It is their duty to keep the complex reasonably clean and to avoid having obstacles in walkways.
3rd Party Assaults
No one should ever be assaulted let alone from someone who does not live in the same apartment complex. It does not make things right if the attacker was a visitor of someone in the complex but if the attacker has no business being in the area then could be a larger issue.
Apartment Buildings Don’t Like to Pay
Many apartment complexes will try to save money and will take shortcuts when it comes to security.
This may include disregarding the maintenance of walls or even not building them high enough to prevent non-residents into the area.
Failing to repair gates is also a common issue which allows unwanted people into the complex.
These gates can be the ones that pedestrians use or the electronic ones where cars exit and enter.
Failing to employ a sufficient amount of security is also a big problem.
In most cases, labor is the highest expense so it is easy for a company to try to shave hours off of the schedule.
By doing so, safety to residents and visitors becomes a bigger issue. Apartment complex’s are already very transient with tenants moving in and out frequently which raises safety concerns.
Neighbors often times do not have a chance to meet each other to build a familiarity relationship.
The safety issue increases even more so when the complex is located in a high crime area.
When crime data spikes in an area, the management of that complex should act accordingly regarding their security measures.
Assaults Happen too Often
If there is an assault (which may include a fight, stabbing, drive by shooting, gunshot, robbery or other type) then the Richard Harris Law firm can assist.
Often times, these types of crimes can be prevented if management is proactive and intentional with their security actions.
What we mean is that if proper lighting is installed and working properly and entrances and exits are monitored properly, many criminals will be deterred from even entering the area.
Security cameras and roaming security guards are also an effective tool.
Many apartment complexes have security guards that ride around in a golf cart or small automobile.
That is helpful because the vehicle is clearly marked which helps them be identified and they are able to cover more ground than by simply walking.
Cases that involve negligent security in an apartment complex are fairly common due to the aforementioned examples (which is just a partial list).
These types of cases often result in large settlements for our clients as safety should be the last concern of an apartment resident.
If management is so poor in their abilities that they do not change burned out light bulbs in a timely manner and an accident occurs then they should be liable. It’s not easy to walk in the dark and in Las Vegas during the winter time, things get dark very early.
Usually by 4:30pm the sun has completely set which means that anyone working the typical day shift of nine to five will be driving home and walking to their apartment door in the dark. With Las Vegas being a 24 hour town, people are getting off of work at all hours of the day so regardless of the season, some hospitality workers are always leaving and returning while it is dark. Therefore it is essential that management maintains lighting and ensures that all areas are well lit.
Dangerous Staircases and Sidewalks
Sometimes a piece of carpet that is not pulled tight or is coming up at the seams can cause someone to trip and fall in an apartment complex. A variety of scenarios exist for this. Stairwells and steps that are crumbling due to extended use are prime suspects to cause accidents / injuries. These areas can get worn down over time and often management will ignore the issue and kick the can down the road.
In most cases, 99% of the time, a step that is a little uneven due to crumbling concrete will still work properly so therefore it may not be a priority item for the apartment complex management.
The rare occasion when someone gets injured using the step though can be a big issue. Often times with trip and falls on staircases, the injuries are magnified as the injured person does not only suffer abrasions and lacerations from the initial fall but also from falling further down the stairs. Often times this can cause a fracture or dislocation. And of course some apartment buildings have elevators in them which can cause injury.
One minor item they can be negligent on which can cause catastrophic damage and injury are smoke detectors. It is the responsibility of management to ensure that all units within the complex are sufficiently fire proof and fire safe. This would include having the proper amount of smoke detectors and conducting periodic checks to ensure they are all working properly.
Fire extinguishers need to be available in strategic locations and fire escapes need to be maintained and clear for an easy exit if the need arises. This would include walkways, stairwells and sidewalks where people might need to use in order to evacuate in an emergency situation.
Richard Harris Law Firm can Help
If there ever is an injury at an apartment complex please call the Richard Harris Law firm for assistance.
Most often someone will get injured and they will incur the costs on their own just thinking that they have bad luck.
However, if you are in a private complex you should have the basic understanding for safety and if your injury was due to negligence you should seek compensation.
There is no reason you should have to pay out of pocket for injuries caused by someone else.
If the homeowner’s or complex management knew of a safety issue and failed to fix it within a timely manner that caused your incident please reach out to our office.
Typical Apartment Complex Management Styles
In many cases, the management is running their complex to squeeze as much money out of the tenants as possible. When a tenant reports a malfunction within their unit, management is supposed to repair it within a certain amount of time. In many cases they will delay the repair hoping that the tenant eventually just gives up. By not repairing things, the company running the complex saves money. Regardless of the customer service they provide, most management companies will increase rates on tenants at every renewal which is usually each year. When maximizing profits takes precedent over ensuring tenant safety then there are going to be issues.
The Richard Harris Law firm can represent all types of criminal and traffic cases. More importantly though, if you are the victim of an injury / accident that occurred in an apartment complex in Las Vegas, Green Valley, Henderson or North Las Vegas please contact us.
When is my Landlord Liable?
While both the landlord and the tenant have obligations to keep the property safe, generally the tenant is responsible to keep the inside of their apartment safe.
The landlord is responsible to make sure common areas, such as parking lots, sidewalks, lobbies, hallways, stairs, and swimming pools are free of danger.
Landlords must meet a strict legal duty to keep properties free of dangerous conditions.
When a landlord does not meet this strict legal duty and injuries result from their action or lack of action, they can be found negligent.
The following basics are required to prove liability:
- The landlord was aware, or should have been aware of the dangerous condition
- A reasonable landlord would have corrected the dangerous condition
- The landlord did not take reasonable steps to correct the dangerous condition or to notify others of the danger
- The landlord’s negligence was the cause of your injuries
Other than government housing authority administered apartment complexes, private apartments are required to be covered by a liability insurance policy.
Claims against the landlord will usually be directed to the landlord’s insurance company.
Injured parties may make claims for medical bills due to injuries, out of pocket expenses, lost wages and emotional distress.
Your lawyer will know how to pursue a claim against a government facility.
After Injury Checklist
The strength of your evidence of landlord negligence will determine the insurance company’s willingness to pay, or a jury’s willingness to find for you.
The following checklist will assist in gathering the needed evidence.
- Gather all written communications (i.e. emails, text messages, letters) between you and the landlord regarding the dangerous condition
- Take photographs and videos of the accident scene from several angles showing the dangerous condition which caused the accident
- Take witness statements from those who may have seen the accident, or who are aware of the dangerous condition
- Seek medical treatment for your injuries as soon as possible. This will document the injuries due to the accident and medical bills will provide proof of damages. If you are seriously injured, call 911 to report the accident and request transport to emergency care
- Follow medical provider instructions carefully and submit to all suggested treatments and therapies
- Gather police or other first responder reports
- Call a lawyer to review your claim
The Richard Harris Law Firm sues negligent landlords
In these uncertain times, with state mandated requirements to stay home, it becomes most important that landlords maintain their properties to minimize danger of injury to tenants and guests.
When landlords fail to meet minimal requirements of their legal duties of care to all who reside within or visit their properties, they may be found liable for damages due to injury.
The lawyers of the Richard Harris Law Firm are well versed in this area of the law and are fully prepared to handle your claim with a landlord’s insurance company or to take the claim to court.
If you have been injured due to the negligence of your landlord, call our office today to discuss your case at (702) 444-4444.