Property owners, supervisors, and managers have the duty to keep a safe environment to make sure there are no hazards within the premises that can cause physical harm to people. However, due to the high replacement, maintenance, or repair costs of building materials, individuals in charge often try to cut corners by overlooking potential problems.
According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, about 135,928 people die annually in the United States due to unintentional injuries, including slip and fall, exposure to harmful substances, and others. Most people suffer fatal injuries because of negligence and carelessness of others, which oftentimes lead to death. Surviving family members file a premises liability lawsuit against the responsible party to seek compensation for the wrongful death of their loved one.
Common Causes of Death Leading to Premises Liability
A broad array of premises liability lawsuits involving wrongful death are caused due to a number of factors, including:
- Building collapse, including ceilings, porch railings, and porches
- Day care injury
- Electric fire
- Exposure to harmful toxins and chemicals
- Failure to properly repair, replace, or maintain different parts of the premises
- Fire, smoke, or explosions
- Inadequate lighting
- Injury from water spills, flooding, or leaks
- Negligent or missing security
- Physical assaults or attacks
- Slip and falls
- Swimming pool accidents
- Uneven surfaces, icy parking lots, slippery sidewalks, and unprotected potholes,
- Violation of housing code or building code
How to File a Lawsuit against the Responsible Party
To file for a wrongful death lawsuit, you need to prove that the property owner or the person in charge was negligent and that their negligence led to the death of your loved one. You should keep in mind that the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims is two years from the date of death. You must file a lawsuit before this period expires, and while evidence can be easily gathered to support your case.
To prove premises liability against the property owner or person in charge, you will have to establish that:
- They had a duty of care toward the deceased
- They breached the duty of care by not acting like a responsible and reasonable property owner would under the same circumstances
- They were negligent and it caused the death of your loved one
- You suffered damages as a result of the death and have the legal right to be compensated
If your situation meets all the able criteria, you may have a wrongful death claim. It is best to work with an experienced attorney who can help you understand your rights, guide you through the legal process, and build a strong case to help you recover damages, such as:
- Compensation for lost benefits
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of companionship
- Lost wages or income
- Loss of consortium
- Medical expenses before the death of the loved one
Generally, large insurance policies are in place to cover for premises liabilities, especially in case of commercial properties. If you lost your loved one due to an injury at a business place, store, or home due to poor maintenance or unsafe conditions, you can hold the property owner liable to receive compensation. For more information, contact the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens, P.C. at (847) 395-2200 or online today to schedule your initial consultation.