Landowners owe a duty of reasonable care to people on their property. A defendant can be held liable for a defective condition on the defendant’s property if he created the condition or had actual or constructive notice of the condition. A plaintiff can establish constructive notice by proving a recurring dangerous condition, or by establishing that the condition existed for such a length of time that the defendant knew or should have reasonably known of the condition. Factors to consider are how long the dangerous condition existed, whether it was visible and how it came into existence. If the defendant created the condition, then the plaintiff does not need to establish actual or constructive notice. A landowner owes a duty of reasonable care to warn others of dangers on the property.
There are various defenses to premises liability actions, for example:
- The defendant did not create the condition,
- The defendant did not have actual or constructive notice of the defect,
- The condition that resulted in injury was not dangerous,
- The defect was obvious,
- The Plaintiff assumed the risk of injury,
- The continuing storm doctrine allows a reasonable time to remove snow and ice after the cassation of the storm
If you experience an injury on a premises and consult with an attorney, the attorney will ask you about how the incident happened and will want to obtain photographs of the area. An attorney will also want to obtain any accident reports filed. If there are witnesses to the accident, you should provide the names and contract information for those witnesses. This will also include witnesses who can testify as to the existence of a dangerous condition even if they did not witness the accident. If you have experienced an injury on a premises, consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to assess your case.