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. Like a car accident your actions shortly after the injury can largely influence whether your legal rights will be protected in the aftermath of the injury. 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 lawyer shortly after an injury in an apartment complex to see that your rights are protected.
Under what conditions 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, and 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.