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Determining Fault Under Louisiana's Premises Liability Law

When someone is injured in Louisiana, the issue of "premises liability" may need to be addressed, as the law provides measures for determining fault.

Premises liability laws require property owners to provide a relatively safe environment, or to provide warning about unsafe conditions. So, a property owner who fails to do so can be held liable if someone is injured on their property. Some examples of premises liability include injuries sustained when someone slips and falls, is injured by falling debris, is injured by a dog or another animal on the premises, or is injured because the property owner failed to have sufficient security measures in place, such as parking lot lighting for a commercial business.

The Truitt Law Firm is well-experienced in handling slip and fall cases for major retailers like Family Dollar, Big Lots, Darden, and Belk. But, we also bring that experience to bear for our limited personal injury clients. 

While the law says that the owner of a home or business where someone else is injured could be held liable, the burden of proof is on the person who was injured to show three things:

  1. That there was an unreasonably dangerous condition on the property;
  2. The property owner knew about the condition; and
  3. That injuries occurred because of the dangerous condition.

If all three prongs are not met, the property owner will generally not be held liable under premises liability law. In a few instances, for example injuries resulting from hazardous materials, property owners can be held "strictly liable" for someone's injuries on their property, so the burden of proof on the injured person is lessened.

When someone is injured and believes the property owner should have known about the unsafe conditions leading to the injury, the injured party should document the situation as best they can. Without documentation, it can be even tougher to prove that the property owner was liable.

Fault is not always immediately clear, and sometimes injured parties bear some responsibility too. Someone who is injured because they did not take reasonable steps to protect themselves from injury might be found to be partially responsible for their own injuries.

Premises liability is not always clear, so getting an experienced premises liability attorney involved as soon as possible after the incident can help protect an injured party's rights under the law.

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