New Jersey Slip and Fall/Premises Liability Attorneys
A slip and fall is no laughing matter; it can cause serious personal injury, such as hip and wrist fractures, concussions, neck and back injuries, and painful lacerations to the hands and face. In New Jersey, property owners are required to keep their premises in a reasonably safe condition for people who are on their property. Property owners who create a dangerous condition or who fail to fix a hazard within a reasonable period of time can be held liable for the damages caused. The personal injury attorneys at De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp know the steps necessary to make sure slip and fall accident victims receive the care and compensation they are entitled to after their injury. Our lawyers help victims of all types of dangerous premises accidents, including:
- Slip and fall on icy sidewalks
- Wet and slippery entrances
- Food or drink spills in a grocery store or restaurant
- Trip and fall due to worn, torn or bunched-up carpeting
- Trips on unmarked steps
- Missing or broken handrails
- Dark or unlit stairwells
- Open trenches or unguarded work site areas
- Open elevator shafts
- Exposed wiring
New Jersey Premises Liability Law
Under the traditional common law, the duty owed by a property owner depended on the status or relationship between the property owner and the injured person. Although no longer required by law, New Jersey courts still resort to these distinctions today to determine whether a duty should be imposed on a property owner in a particular case. These common law classifications are described below:
Invitees – Invitees are persons who are invited on to the property by the owner. An invitee would include a social guest to someone’s home as well as a customer or patron of a business. The duty owed to invitees at common law was to keep the premises safe and free of defects, including a duty to repair a dangerous condition or warn invitees of possible hidden dangers.
Licensees – A licensee is a person who is permitted to enter onto the property of another for some business purpose. Common examples of licensees include mail carriers, delivery persons, and meter readers. The duty owed to a licensee includes the duty to repair or warn of a danger the owner knows of, although the owner does not necessarily have a duty to inspect the premises and make them safe for the benefit of a licensee.
Trespassers – A person who is on the premises without any legal right to be there at the time is a trespasser. The duty owed to a trespasser is minimal, although a property owner could still be liable for any damages if the owner wantonly injures the trespasser.
Help for Complex New Jersey Premises Liability Matters
Premises liability cases are often difficult cases to pursue. For instance, timing is frequently a critical issue. In most cases, you must be required to prove that the hazardous condition existed for a sufficient period of time before the accident so that the property owner should have known about it and fixed it, or at least warned others of the danger. The property owner may also claim that your injuries are exaggerated or due to a preexisting condition, or that the accident was your own fault. All of these issues present challenges to success on a slip and fall, trip and fall or other premises liability case.
The attorneys at De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp have the knowledge, skills and ability to thoroughly investigate a slip and fall and determine who is liable. We have the experience necessary to properly value the claim and build a strong case. If you have been injured due to a slip and fall or other injury on another’s dangerous property, contact De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp at our office in Wayne for help from a team of experienced New Jersey premises liability lawyers.