Premises Liability in Texas
The term "premises liability" is a legal concept whereby a person becomes injured in an accident on someone else's property or business's premises as a result of the defective, dangerous, hazardous, or unsafe condition of the property. Some common injuries or accidents that may occur and lead to premises liability claims include:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Dog bites and other animal attacks
- Accidents involving fire
- Defective and broken stair accidents
- Garage door accidents
- Porch collapses
- Negligent security leading to assault or injury
- Oil leaks
- Defective staircases or stair collapse
- Water leaks or flooding
- Inadequate maintenance of the property
- Elevator and escalator defects or accidents
- Oilfield accidents
- Swimming pool accidents
- Toxic fumes or chemicals
An experienced attorney can help identify the at-fault party, determine liability, and file your injury claims within the specified timeframe.
Statute of Limitations
The premises liability statute of limitation in Texas is two years from the date of the accident or injury. Thus, the injured party must bring an action to recover damages for their slip and fall accident injuries within two (2) years from the date of the injury or accident.
Depending on the surrounding circumstances of your case, any of the following parties or entities may be held liable for a slip and fall accident:
Property Owner: Homeowners or property owners may be held responsible for a slip and fall accident that occurred on their property.
Business Owner: Business owners or store managers may be held liable for the unsafe or slippery conditions of the business's premises which caused the victim to slip and fall.
Government Entity: If you sustain an injury in an accident on a property owned, managed, or controlled by the government, you may hold the municipal agency or government entity accountable.
Your Carelessness: However, if your negligence, oversight, or lack of attention caused you to slip and fall, the Texas court may shift the blame onto your carelessness. In such situations, recovering compensation for your injuries may be very difficult.
Others: Other entities that may be held responsible for slip and fall accidents include:
- Companies that lease their business locations
- Property management companies
- Builders and construction companies
- Commercial property owners
- Service providers, such as maintenance, repair, and professional cleaning companies
A skilled premises liability attorney can review the facts of your case thoroughly, identify the responsible parties, and help prove negligence.
To recover damages in your slip and fall accident case, you must prove fault by showing one of the following:
- The property owner caused the unsafe condition that led to the slip and fall.
- The property owner knew – or should have known – that the condition was dangerous by "reasonable" person standards.
- The property owner failed to fix or warn you about the unsafe condition.
An experienced attorney can help prove fault and determine the amount of compensation you can get.
Comparative Negligence in Texas
Additionally, Texas operates using the "modified comparative negligence" rule, with a 51% bar. According to the principle, a person injured in a slip and fall accident may only be allowed to recover damages if their share of negligence is equal or lower (50% or less) than the defendants. However, the amount of compensation that you may recover will be reduced by your fault degree.
For instance, if you were texting while walking, became distracted, and failed to notice a wet surface, which you would have noticed if you focused, the judge may find you to be partially responsible for your injury. If the judge awards $30,000 in total damages, and your share of fault was found to be 10%, your compensation would be reduced by $3,000. You will only receive $27,000.
However, under Texas's modified comparative negligence principle, you will be barred from seeking damages if the court finds you 51% or more at fault for your injury or the slip and fall accident. A knowledgeable premises liability attorney can fight for you and help you seek fair financial compensation for your injuries.
Work With an Experienced
Personal Injury Attorney
Getting injured in a slip and fall accident on someone else's property can be difficult and emotional. Whether you sustained minor or serious injuries, proving negligence and seeking damages for your injuries may present different challenges. Therefore, retaining an experienced personal injury attorney is crucial to help protect your rights and pursue the financial justice that you deserve.
I have devoted my career to providing outstanding legal services and protecting the best interests of slip and fall accident victims and their loved ones. Using my comprehensive understanding of the laws addressing premises liability cases involving slip and fall accidents, I can help guide you through the often complex legal process.