Millions of people are injured at home every year across the U.S. Accidents happen. But what if you are injured at a friend's house? In this blog post, we'll discuss how and when you should take legal action if you're hurt at a friend's home.
Property owners always have a responsibility to keep their homes and property reasonably safe for visitors. This responsibility is called “premises liability,” and it holds property owners or residents liable for injuries on their property. According to the Rhode Island Supreme Court:
[A] landowner has a duty to exercise reasonable care for the safety of persons reasonably expected to be on the premises, and that duty includes an obligation to protect against the risks of a dangerous condition existing on the premises, provided the landowner knows of, or by the exercise of reasonable care would have discovered, the dangerous condition. The burden of proving that sufficient evidence existed to show that the defendants knew or should have known of an unsafe condition on their premises is on the plaintiff.
Lieberman v. Bliss-Doris Realty Assocs., 819 A.2d 666 (R.I. 2003).
A premises liability case can result from a slip on an icy sidewalk, a fall on a loose porch board, a bite from an unfriendly dog, an injury resulting from inadequate lighting or security, an injury caused by a construction defect or unsafe design, or even the drowning of a child in a backyard pool.
When Should You Take Legal Action?
Even if you're facing medical bills, lost time at work, or even permanently debilitating injuries, it can be challenging to know when to take legal action. No one likes to inconvenience family and friends, and you may be worried about harming close relationships. But, it's important to remember that if you're injured because of an unsafe condition at a friend's home, their homeowner's insurance policy should cover it. You seek reimbursement for your medical expenses and lost wages from an insurance company, not from your friend.
How Should You Proceed?
You should always seek medical treatment right away. But then you should consider filing a personal injury suit to recover your expenses. If you think it's time to take legal action, you should consult an experienced personal injury attorney. An attorney can evaluate the cost of your injuries, consult with any insurance companies involved, and ensure that you file any necessary lawsuit well within the statute of limitations.
If you've been injured at a friend's house, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact Inman & Tourgee online or call (401) 823-9200 to discuss your legal options today.