In South Carolina, the law allows you to seek compensation from property owners for injuries sustained within their premises (home or business). You may end up with serious injuries, including broken bones, deep cuts, and muscle sprains from slip and fall accidents. In the worst-case scenario, these accidents can even be fatal.
With an experienced Greenville, SC premises liability lawyer on your side, you can rest assured that your interests are being represented in any compensation negotiation or legal proceedings, even as you continue to recover from the physical and emotional toll of the accident.
How Does Premises Liability Work In South Carolina?
According to South Carolina laws, generally speaking, property owners are required to protect anyone visiting the property from any hazards within the property. The level of protection to be provided is set at what is reasonably possible, in rough terms. To ensure that property owners understand the extent of their duty/obligation to those visiting their property, South Carolina law separates visitors into different classes:
Invitees: Any individual deemed to have been invited onto the property by the owner is owed the highest duty of care. In addition to preparing the property in order to make it reasonably safe for invited visitors, property owners are also required to warn invitees of any potential dangers that they are aware of or should be aware of.
For a person to be considered an invitee, their entry onto the property in question must be related to the invitation or business of the owner of the property or part of an activity that allows them to be on the property. For instance, in a restaurant situation, customers are considered to be invitees. Simply put, property owners and invitees have a mutually beneficial relationship.
Licensees: A lesser duty/obligation is owed to any visitors deemed to be licensees. Licensees are visitors who enter a property without the owner’s consent. Furthermore, licensees are deemed to have entered the property for their own gain and not for that of the owner. Take a person who enters a property just to ask for directions; they are a good example of a licensee.
Trespassers (Adults): Anyone who enters a property without any invitation from the owner or license to do so is deemed to be a trespasser. Property owners owe a minimal level of duty to such visitors.
Children (Trespassers): Children are treated differently by South Carolina law when it comes to the duty of care owed to them, by property owners. If something in a property tempts (attractive nuisance) a minor to enter the property, and the minor subsequently gets injured on the property due to a danger that they didn’t realize existed because of their young age, the minor is allowed to sue the property owner under SC law.
Does It Matter If The Property Owner Knew About The Hazard/Danger In Question?
The specific duty of care owed to different types of visitors by property owners is dependent on their classification and the circumstances of each case. That being said, property owners could be held responsible for the safety and security of anyone within their property regardless of their classification as licensees, trespassers, or invitees. To avoid liability for any resulting injuries, owners must ensure that any reasonably apparent hazards within their property are remedied.
Property owners may use warning signs or address any dangers in their property to avoid injuries. And, in their defense, property owners may argue that they were not aware of the dangers in question provided that this is a reasonable conclusion. In other cases, property owners may argue that the dangers in question were obvious to the victim as well.
Even in cases where the owner took reasonable steps to remedy the danger and an injury still occurred, you as the injured party still have an arguable case even though the owner might deny liability.
Simply put, when it comes to premises liability, each case is unique. This is why it is so important for you to discuss the details of your case with a Greenville personal injury lawyer to consider your premises liability case after sustaining an injury on another person’s property.
Types of Compensation
You may seek the following types of compensation:
- Lost wages
- Emotional distress
- Medical treatment costs – current and future costs related to the injuries
- Physical impairment and disfigurement
- Damage to personal property
How A Premises Liability Lawyer Can Help You. A premises liability lawyer can help with:
- Investigating the accident
- Gathering evidence relating to the accident
- Representing your interests in negotiations with insurance companies
- Consulting medical professionals and other relevant experts
- Analyzing your medical records
- Putting together a strong case and arguing it in a court of law
- Keeping bill collectors at bay
Talk To A Premises Liability Lawyer In Greenville South Carolina Today
Upstate Personal Injury Lawyers is here to help, if you or your loved one has been injured on someone else’s property as a result of negligent conduct on the owner’s part. To ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve, contact our Greenville, SC premises liability lawyers for a free consultation today, to discuss the specific details of your case.