Oklahoma Premises Liability Lawyers
You travel a little bit every day. You go to work or school, run errands, visit with friends, and during all of that time you rarely worry about getting hurt. You do not have to think about accidents or injuries because you trust that the places you go are safe. Whether it is your office, a store, your friend’s house, or a place of entertainment, you assume that the people in charge of that space keep it safe for you and everyone else who regularly comes and goes. But sometimes places you assume are safe have hazards that can lead to you getting hurt. For example, your favorite grocery store may not mop up a spill one day or put out a sign, leading you to fall and break your arm.
There are countless scenarios that can arise where you get hurt because a property owner did not take care of the premises. Under Oklahoma’s premises liability laws, that property owner may be financially responsible for your injuries. If you were hurt on someone else’s property, call the experienced premises liability attorneys of Brown & Gould, PLLC today to schedule a consultation.
What is Premises Liability?
Under premises liability, property owners are generally responsible for the safety of their guests, licensees, and children. This means the owner of a home, business, or piece of land must keep that area safe for people invited or allowed to come onto that area. This is a legal duty. Keeping the premises safe includes regular inspections and maintenance, fixing any problems that arise, and posting warning signs if there are potential hazards that cannot be remedied immediately.
Duty to Guests and Invitees
An invitee or guest is someone is was expressly or impliedly invited onto another person or entity’s premises. For example, you are an invitee when you enter a store or office, because by being open for business you are impliedly invited to come in and shop or conduct business.
The owners or occupants of a premises owe you a duty of reasonable care, which means they must fix or warn you about hazards the owner knows or should have known about. The owners need to make regular and reasonable inspections of the property to find any hidden dangers that should be repaired. However, owners do not have to fix or warn you about hazards that are in the open and obvious.
If you were hurt because of a hidden danger that was not open and obvious, you may be able hold the owners responsible. You and your attorney will need to prove that the owners knew or should have known about the issue and that under a duty of reasonable care, they should have fixed the hazard or warned you about it. Instead, because the owners breached their duty of care, you were hurt and the owners are responsible for the costs associated with your injury.
Duty to Licensees
If you are a licensee, the owners of a property do not owe the same duty to you as they would to an invitee. A licensee is someone who comes onto a property by express or implied invitation but for their own benefit. Examples can be emergency workers, utility workers, and hunters.
Owners or occupiers of a property have a lesser duty toward licensees than invitees or guests. Owners must only warn licensees about hidden dangers they are aware of. This does not include hazards that the owners should have been aware of or open and obvious dangers. Also, the owner of the land has no duty to inspect the premises for hidden dangers.
Duty to Trespassers
A trespasser is an individual that has not received any invitation to come onto the land and is on the premises against the owner’s wishes. An owner of land does not owe a trespasser any duty other than to not willfully or wantonly injure the trespasser. If you were on someone’s property without invitation, you may have a difficult time recovering from your injuries. However, you should speak with an attorney before assuming you were a trespasser or there is no hope of recovery. The lawyers of Brown & Gould, PLLC can analyze your circumstances and inform you of your rights.
The Oklahoma Premises Liability Lawyers of Brown & Gould, PLLC Can Help
If you were hurt away from home and you believe it is because of a problem the property owner should have fixed, conact online or call the experienced Oklahoma City premises liability attorneys of Brown & Gould, PLLC, at 405-235-4500 right away. We understand you are going through a difficult time trying to recover from the accident. You may not be able to work even while experiencing unexpected medical bills. We will fight for your rights to financially recover from this incident so that you can recover lost wages, pay your medical bills, and be compensated for your pain and suffering.