Commercial and residential property owners have a legal responsibility to ensure the safety of guests on their property, or they may be held liable for personal injuries that occur.
Property Owners Can Be Held Liable
If a person is injured on private property that belongs to another person, he/she may be able to file a civil lawsuit with a personal injury lawyer to recover damages for injuries. These types of injuries fall under premises liability laws that dictate the legal responsibility of a property owner or property manager.
Commercial Property Owners
Business owners are held to a high standard of care for people on their property. They are required to keep property in a reasonably safe condition to prevent accidents and injuries to employees and customers. Regular inspections of the property are required to check for and repair unsafe conditions.
Owners must provide safe walkways, well-maintained flooring, stairs with non-slip treads and secure handrails, and well-lit spaces. If there are known damages on the property that can cause injuries, owners must post signs warning of danger. Henderson personal injury lawyers see a large number of premises liability lawsuits filed against owners of hotels, casinos, and restaurants in high-tourist areas.
Residential Property Owners
Under Nevada premises liability laws, homeowners have a lower standard of care than business owners. Private property visitors are classified as Invitees, Licensees, and Trespassers:
- Invitees – Invitees are people who are invited to the property by the homeowner for business purposes. Invitees are owed the highest duty of care under the law.
- Licensees – Licensees are people who are permitted on the property for non-business purposes, such as friends and social guests. Homeowners must warn guests of dangerous property conditions, but they are not required to make special safety provisions.
- Trespassers – Trespassers are people who are intruding on the property without permission. Under the law, homeowners have no responsibility to protect the safety of trespassers.
Some of the most common Nevada premises liability claims involve slip-and-fall lawsuits against hotels and casinos. Plaintiffs who win premises liability lawsuits may be entitled to compensatory damages for medical bills, lost wages, loss of future earnings, and pain and suffering. If the property owner’s lack of reasonable care is particularly egregious, the court can also order the property owner to pay punitive damages to the injured party, which can be considerably greater than compensatory damages.