Term of the Day
Definition - What does Premises Liability mean?
What is premises liability?
If someone goes onto your property, the property owner is expected to keep the place safe. If someone is injured while they are on your property, there is a good chance you may be liable for anything that happens to them. Premises liability usually comes into play in cases that involve personal injury.
Isn't premises liability different for guests and professionals?
Yes actually. Someone who you invite onto your property is treated differently by the property owner than someone who is there as a delivery man or a salesperson. In premises liability law, there are three different types of people that can enter your property, and each one is treated differently. The three different types of individuals are invitees, licensees, and trespassers.
Who counts as an invitee?
Anyone who the property owner has given permission to enter said property counts as an invitee. For example, a friend of yours, a family member, and in most cases, even your neighbors can be considered as invitees.
Who counts as a licensee?
A licensee is someone who has the property owner's permission to enter. A salesperson, gardener, house cleaner, etc. could be considered
Who counts as a trespasser?
Anyone who enters your property without permission from you, whether it be explicit permission or implied permission of the owner. The trespasser will usually be on the property for their purposes, like a burglar. A property owner is almost never responsible for an injury to a trespasser. In most cases, the only reason a property owner would be responsible for a trespasser if they intentionally tried to hurt said trespasser with something like a trap.
What types of situations involve premises liability?
Premises Liability can apply to a vast amount of cases. Anything from someone slipping and falling on a slick driveway, or getting bit by a dog. Premises liability can also apply to non-residential properties as well. An amusement park, for example, can be liable if an accident occurs at their park because they are expected to keep the property safe enough to ensure that visitors will not be injured while there.
What are the consequences of premises liability?
Premises liability isn't something that the property owner does on purpose. Therefore, it isn't treated as a regular premises liability case where you intentionally hurt or assault someone. In most cases, the owner will never face jail time. However, they will almost always be responsible for paying for the injured person's medical bills and compensating for other damages done to the person or their property. One situation where the owner is almost always not responsible for the person is if they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In this case, it is their fault for being too intoxicated.
How does premises liability apply to DUIs?
If a bartender continues to serve someone drinks after they seem like they have already had too many, the bartender may be liable in some ways if they person was to get in an accident. Legally, the bartender is obligated to stop serving someone once they think they have had enough. However, this is a unique and rare case of premises liability.