Have you been injured on someone else's property
Premises liability law hold property owners responsible for accidents that occur on thier property due to dangerous conditions. Slip and falls are the most common.
Premises Liability laws are complex, so if you have been injured while on someone else’s property, you are encouraged to speak to a lawyer who can help you understand and protect your legal rights. Lowcountry Injury Law Attorney, Dan Denton, literally wrote the book on "The Law of Slip & Fall in South Carolina," published by the South Carolina Bar – Continuing Education division, in 2014. Mr. Denton, and Lowcountry Injury Law persona injury lawyers, not only know the law of slip & fall, but they have tried many cases in this area and has obtained significant verdicts, in addition to numerous high-dollar settlements. (The images in the header photo collage are from actual cases handled by Lowcountry Injury Law.)
Were you injured by a fall caused by a dangerous condition?
Slip and fall accidents are among the most common causes of Premises Liability injuries, but there are many other common causes of Premises Liability claims, including animal attacks, assault (such as in a shopping center parking lot), defective or dangerous equipment and accidental drowning.
Slip and fall cases can involve a variety of surfaces including tile or wood floors, concrete sidewalks, asphalt pavement and steps. The falls and resulting injuries are commonly the result of a liquid or other “foreign substance” on floors, abrupt changes in floor levels, poor lighting, a hidden hazard such a hole in the ground covered with grass, or improperly constructed or maintained stairs, porches, or railings. People can fall for numerous reasons, including the interaction of the walking surface with shoes; the environment, along with its distractions; and the physical and mental limitations of the victim.
Propery owners have duties towards their visitors.
Property owners or occupiers, especially those that invite the public to shop or conduct business on their premises, have a responsibility to maintain their premises in a reasonably safe manner. The owners, or those in control of the premises, are responsible for injuries that occur as a result of a dangerous or hazardous condition on their property, of which they knew or should have known.
A slip and fall case may involve litigation against the property owner, property manager, landscape company, contractors, architects, owners association and other potentially liable parties that possessed, controlled, designed, managed, maintained, or created the hazard.
In South Carolina, case law has established that in a slip-and-fall case, the injured visitor, or plaintiff, may hold the property owner or occupant liable for an injury caused by a dangerous or defective condition on the premises, if he or she can prove that:
1) The defendant owed a duty toward the plaintiff;
2) The defendant breached a duty of care toward the plaintiff by showing that:
- By a specific act, the defendant created a hazardous condition,—one that posed a foreseeable unreasonable risk of harm,—or had actual or constructive notice of it and failed to exercise reasonable care to warn against or remedy it; or
- In cases involving a foreign substance on a storekeeper’s floor, the defendant was responsible for the substance being on the floor, or knew or should have known of the hazard’s existence at the time of the fall; or
- In the case of an open-and-obvious hazard, the defendant had notice of the hazard and failed to warn or guard against it, or should have anticipated that the plaintiff would encounter the condition, or was likely to be distracted and fail to protect himself; and
3) The hazardous condition was the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries—the breach of duty resulted in damages.
Regulations & Standards for Fall Protection and Pedestrian Safety – This pdf document, prepared by attorney Dan Denton, summarizes some of the most relevant sections from various governmental regulations and industry standards relating to safe walking surfaces and fall protection, including those from International Codes Council (IBC, IPMC), Federal Regulations (ADA & OSHA), private organizations (ANSI, ASTM, NFSI, UL) and South Carolina codes. Slip and fall attorneys at Lowcountry Injury Law are very knowlegeable of these regulations and standards and how to use them in proving a breach of a standard of care on the part of a property owner who created or allowed a dangerous conditiion to exist upon their property resulting in an injury to a client.
Should you file a slip-and- fall law suit?
Not all injustices are the same and not all injuries deserve the time and expense of law suit. A number of factors have to be considered: the nature and extent of your injuries; the amount of medical bills incurred; whether there was any time lost from work; the strength of your case against the potential defendant; whether the defendant is covered by insurance; etc. If you have been injured in a slip and fall, you should consult with an experienced slip-and-fall attorney from Lowcountry Injury Law. For more information on whether you have a viable slip-and-fall law suit, click Nolo.com.
Click here to viewdownlload Slip & Fall Checklist – Fault Factors. This is a list of factors that a jury may consider in any given slip-and-fall case for comparing and weighing the negligence of the parties to a case. The list can also serve as a helpful case investigation and evaluation checklist, as all the factors are relevant to prosecuting or defended slip-and-fall cases.
Dan Denton is a personal injury and premises liability lawyer that probably has more experience and success in litigating Premises Liability cases than most attorneys in Beaufort County SC. He has a thorough understanding of South Carolina Premises Liability law and the litigation techniques and strategies that have resulted in significant verdicts and settlements. For summaries of some of the cases, see Case Results, which includes a case where he was co-counsel in a law suit that resulted in a multi-million dollar jury verdict that was the highest verdict ever awarded in a slip and fall case in Beaufort County SC and, possibly, in the State of South Carolina. In 1998, Dan Denton and co-counsel, David Berry, obtained the first jury verdict (albeit a low amount) in the United States against Wal-Mart for negligent failure to maintain a safe parking lot, where a customer was attacked and robbed by a criminal gang trolling the parking lot.
For additional information about Premises Liability and Slip & Fall cases, go to PersonlInjuryLawyer.com. Also, extensive sources of information about premises liability and other types of personal injury cases may be found on this Website's Resources page.