Premises liability is the area of law governing how landowners must maintain their premises. Maine requires that the owner or possessor of a building or land must use reasonable care to protect permitted visitors on the property from harm.
If you suffered any type of injury while on another person’s land, you might have a viable case for compensation. If you can prove that the landowner or possessor’s negligence was the cause of your injury, you could recover damages that reimburse your losses and fairly compensate you for your pain and suffering.
We will not let the landowner, or their insurance company, take advantage of you. An Auburn premises liability lawyer from our firm can present a comprehensive demand for compensation and negotiate with the owner’s insurance company on your behalf. If the insurer does not offer you a reasonable settlement, legal counsel can pursue damages in court. Reach out to Gideon Asen, LLC, today to discuss your legal options.
Incidents That Could Give Rise to Premises Liability
When most people think about premises liability, their mind goes to slip and fall cases. While slips, trips, and falls frequently lead to these kinds of lawsuits, other incidents could also trigger premises liability.
The law in Maine does not distinguish between business guests and social guests—anyone who enters a property with permission is entitled to the same protection under the law. A property owner might be liable if a guest suffered injuries due to:
- Drowning or near-drowning in a pool
- Carbon monoxide poisoning
- A dog bite or domestic animal attack
- Strike from a falling object
- Toxic exposure
- Fire or explosion
If a guest was injured during the commission of a crime, a property owner could also be liable if they failed to utilize adequate security measures.
This is only a partial list of events that could potentially support a premises liability lawsuit. An Auburn attorney can review the circumstances of a particular accident and determine whether the landowner might be liable under a premises liability theory.
A Landowner’s Obligations to Guests
Anyone who owns or possesses property has an obligation to people who enter their property with permission. The owner must take reasonable steps to keep the property free of hazards that could potentially injure a guest. A landowner must make active efforts to discover hazards. If someone suffers an injury due to a hazard the owner did not know about, they could be liable if reasonable efforts would have revealed it.
If the landowner discovers an issue that could be dangerous, they have a duty to repair it as quickly as possible. If immediate repairs are not feasible, they must post warnings and attempt to prevent guests from encountering the hazard.
Whether an owner’s efforts were reasonable depends on the circumstances. A court might weigh the likelihood that a hazard would cause harm against the inconvenience and expense of mitigating the hazard. An Auburn premises liability attorney could review a specific situation and determine whether the landowner failed to make reasonable efforts under the circumstances.
Injured Person Might Bear Some Responsibility
Many incidents that trigger premises liability result from the landowner and the guest both being negligent. When an injured person’s conduct contributed to the accident, they cannot collect the full extent of their damages. Maine Statute Title 14, §156 allows them to collect damages attributable to the others’ conduct.
If the injured person was more than 49 percent responsible for an accident, the law prevents them from claiming any damages at all. Insurers for property owners often use this law to try to avoid liability for an accident. An Auburn premises liability attorney could present evidence showing that a property owner’s degree of responsibility for an accident exceeds the injured party’s responsibility.
Contact an Auburn Premises Liability Attorney Today
If you were hurt while out shopping, visiting a friend, or doing business in an office building, you might have a viable premises liability claim. If your injury was caused by the landowner’s negligence, they could be held liable for your medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering.
Do not try to handle a complex claim like this without guidance from an experienced attorney. Call Gideon Asen, LLC, to schedule a consultation with a dedicated Auburn premises liability lawyer.