"Whether it's a whiplash, serious injury or wrongful death case, we pride ourselves on representing you with the personal service and aggressive representation that you expect and deserve!" -Attorney Ron Sholes
Gainesville Premises Liability Lawyer
Premises Liability Claims in Alachua County
When you visit someone else’s property, you reasonably assume that it will be well-maintained and free of hazards that could cause you to be injured. In fact, under Florida law, property owners are required to remove, repair, or warn visitors of any dangerous conditions that pose a threat of “foreseeable” harm. Unfortunately, many property owners fail to uphold this duty—and innocent people can be seriously hurt.
If you slipped and fell, were exposed to harmful chemicals, or were otherwise injured due to a property owner’s negligence, you could have grounds for a premises liability claim. At the Law Offices of Ron Sholes, P.A., we represent clients in Gainesville and throughout Alachua County who have been seriously harmed due to unsafe conditions on private and public property, as well as in government-owned and operated spaces. With over 100 years of combined experience, our team is well-equipped to help you navigate the recovery process and fight for the maximum compensation you are owed.
We offer free initial consultations and there are no attorneys’ fees unless we win your case. Call us at (855) 933-3881 to learn more today.
What Responsibilities Do Florid Property Owners Have to Others?
As stated above, property owners in Florida are required by law to ensure their properties are free from potential hazards. This means that they must maintain their premises and repair or remove any dangerous conditions that could injure or harm others. If the property owner is unable to repair or remove the hazard in a timely manner, they must provide adequate warnings to anyone lawfully entering the property.
If a property owner fails to uphold the duty of care, and you are injured as a result, you could have grounds to file a claim. To do so, you will need to prove the following:
- A dangerous condition existed on the property
- The property owner knew or reasonably should have known the dangerous condition existed
- The property owner failed to take reasonable steps to remove, repair, or warn you about the dangerous condition
- You were injured and suffered measurable damages
- The dangerous condition was the proximate cause of your injuries and damages
- You were not being negligent
- You were lawfully on the property
Proving each of these elements can be challenging, which is why it is important that you work with a skilled Gainesville premises liability lawyer, like those at the Law Offices of Ron Sholes, P.A. Our team can gather all applicable evidence and build a strong case on your behalf.
Examples of Hazardous Property Conditions
There are many types of hazardous property conditions. Essentially, any condition that poses a risk of injury or harm could be classified as a “dangerous” or “hazardous” condition.
Common examples include:
- Wet or slippery floors
- Uneven floors
- Torn or ripped carpeting
- Exposed electrical wiring
- Unsafe stairs and steps
- Lack of proper warning signage
- Insufficient lighting
- Negligent security
- Loose dogs/pets
- Harmful or toxic substances/chemicals
- Improper or lack of safety fencing around swimming pools
- Cluttered walkways and aisles
- Defective shelving
- Lack of proper handrails
- Lack of exit signage
- Exceeded maximum occupancy limits
These are just some examples of dangerous property conditions, but there are many others. If you were hurt on someone else’s property due to an unsafe or hazardous condition that the property owner knew about or reasonably should have known about yet did nothing to address, reach out to our attorneys to learn more about your potential right to recovery.
Can You Sue a Florida Property Owner If You Were Trespassing?
Property owners in Florida owe varying duties of care depending on the status of the injured individual. In other words, the reason for you being on the property plays a role in your ability to seek compensation.
For example, property owners owe the greatest duty of care to invitees. An invitee (sometimes referred to as an “invited licensee”) is someone who is expressly or implicitly invited onto a property. Examples include an invited guest in a home or a customer in a store. Property owners owe a slightly lower duty of care to licensees (also called “uninvited licensees”). This is someone who is not necessarily invited onto the property, but who also isn’t expressly prohibited from being on the property. Examples include a delivery person or solicitor.
Property owners owe the lowest duty of care to trespassers, or individuals who are not lawfully allowed to be on the property. However, note that property owners do owe a duty of care to trespassers in certain circumstances. While property owners are not required to warn trespassers of dangerous property conditions, they can be held liable for injuries caused by the property owner’s gross negligence or intentional misconduct.
The law is different when a trespasser is a child. Under Florida’s attractive nuisance laws, property owners can be held legally liable when a minor is injured on their property—regardless of whether the child was invited onto the property—when the property owner failed to properly close off portions of the property containing something that could reasonably be foreseen to attract children, such as a swimming pool or trampoline.
Protecting Your Right to a Fair Recovery
If you, your child, or someone else you love was injured due to a property owner’s negligence, call the Gainesville premises liability lawyers at our firm. We are available to take your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and you will always be connected with a real, live person. Our friendly and compassionate support staff can help you take the next step in your recovery. We are happy to answer your questions and help you set up a free initial consultation with one of our experienced attorneys. There is no obligation to hire us, and we do not collect any attorneys’ fees unless/until we recover compensation for you.