The basic concept of a premises liability claim is that a property owner should have done more to ensure you were safe when visiting their premises.
Yet these cases are anything but basic. North Carolina cases revolve around two things.
1. Whether an owner took reasonable care
Things that could affect your case include the following:
- Whether the owner knew or should have known about the hazard in question
- What, if anything they did to warn and protect visitors from the hazard
- Where the hazard was located (in an easily accessible spot or behind a barrier, for example)
Let’s use the example of a hole in the ground. You are more likely to succeed in a claim if:
- The owner knew of the hole rather than if they were entirely unaware and the hole was new.
- The hole was in plain view rather than hidden under brambles.
- The owner did nothing to safeguard people rather than if they took action.
- The hole is close to the road rather than a long way inside the property.
2. Whether you had the legal right to be there in the first place
You’ll have a stronger case if you were lawfully on the property than if you jumped a fence with signs saying, “Private property. Stay out.” Courts sometimes make exceptions if they feel the hazard tempted a child to enter unlawfully. One example could be a climbing frame that could see through the boundary fence.
You could face large medical bills if you or your child gets injured on someone’s property. Understanding your legal options could help to cover them.