Common Issues with Premises Liability Lawsuits
As many plaintiffs have discovered, winning a premises liability lawsuit is not always easy. You may encounter a number of different challenges as you pursue justice, and it is important to be aware of these potential hurdles going forward. When you understand some of the common mistakes and issues in premise liability lawsuits, you can adjust your strategy accordingly. While winning a premises liability lawsuit certainly is not impossible, it can be difficult if you are approaching the legal process without the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Our legal professionals are well aware of the various challenges you may face as you pursue meaningful compensation for your injuries. We can explain the overall legal process, and we can also help you navigate the various aspects of a personal injury lawsuit.
Even though many of these challenges are legitimate, it is important not to feel discouraged about your chances of success. With a skilled attorney by your side, there is no reason that any of these issues should pose much of a threat to your chances of success. This is why it is so important to hire a knowledgeable, skilled attorney. Consider reaching out to a law firm that specializes in premises liability lawsuits, such as Mary Alexander & Associates.
There Were Warning Signs – Property owners can provide themselves with considerable legal protection merely by posting clear warning signs. If there is a hazard on their property, they do not technically need to “fix” the issue, at least not right away. If they become aware of potential danger, all they need to do is post a warning sign that clearly communicates the issue to members of the public. A classic example is a “wet floor” sign. If you see the sign and decide to walk forward into the dangerous area anyway, you may have trouble filing a claim if you slip and fall.
That being said, you can fight against this defense in a number of effective ways. Maybe the signage was not clearly posted. Maybe the sign did not adequately warn you about the hazard. If a property owner is aware of a danger over a long period of time and simply continues to post warning signs without actually fixing the core issue, they may also be liable.
You Were Trespassing – If you were trespassing, you might not have the ability to file a premise liability claim. This is due to a core element of negligence that requires property owners to be “aware” of both hazards and members of the public on their land. If they were not aware of people trespassing regularly on their property, they cannot be expected to ensure the safety of those individuals.
However, there are many examples of trespassers who have successfully taken legal action against property owners. For example, they might prove that the property owner was indeed aware of people who regularly trespassed on their land. In addition, property owners are never allowed to set “booby traps” for people on their property.
Assumption of Risk – One of the most common defenses to premise liability lawsuits is the “assumption of risk.” Defense attorneys may argue that you should have been aware that there was an inherent risk associated with the property, and that you took your safety into your own hands when you entered the property. For example, it might have been very obvious that the property contained dangerous chemicals. Or perhaps you were engaging in a risky activity on the property, such as playing high-contact sports in an athletic facility.
A Skilled Defense Attorney
If the property owner manages to hire a skilled defense attorney, this may also pose a significant challenge. These attorneys may question the jurisdiction of the case, block testimony, bring up hearsay rules, and present their own expert witnesses. There are a number of important legal rules that you must follow in a premise liability trial.
Deviating from the proper rules of evidence and rules of civil procedure can result in negative consequences, and a skilled defense attorney can pounce on these mistakes decisively. Of course, you can get around this issue by simply hiring an expert attorney of your own who is more than capable of going up against even the best defense lawyers.
Waiting Too Long
Another common mistake is waiting too long. Due to the statute of limitations in California, you only have two years to file your claim after becoming aware of your injuries. While two years might sound like more than enough time to file a lawsuit, you would be surprised at how quickly the months can fly by. Filing a lawsuit is something that a lot of people put off until the last possible moment.
You need to take into account a number of steps before you can file a lawsuit. For example, you need to select an attorney in whom you feel confident. Then, you need to sit down and have a consultation with that attorney. The filing process can take a long time when you consider all of these various factors.
In addition, injuries can worsen significantly over the course of two years. A head injury might not seem like a big deal today, but you may experience a cognitive decline that occurs gradually over many years. That is just one example of how injuries can become life-altering, even if they seem relatively innocuous at first. Because of these various factors, it is best to file your lawsuit as soon as possible.
Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney Today
If you have been searching the San Jose area for a qualified attorney you can depend on, look no further than Mary Alexander & Associates. Thanks to a wealth of experience with a wide range of premise liability lawsuits, we are familiar with virtually every potential issue you might encounter as you pursue justice. Not only that, but we have developed a number of effective strategies that will help you overcome these legal hurdles. Reach out today, and we will make sure that you are pursuing your lawsuit in the most efficient way possible.