When can a property owner be sued for unsafe conditions in Iowa?
Iowa City, IA – It is possible to sue the owner of a piece of property after a victim is hurt while on the land or in the buildings that the owner maintains. However, there are certain elements that must be shown by the victim such as a lack of care, along with actual causation of their injuries and tangible losses. Because premises liability can become complex in many cases, it is important for a victim to get legal help to figure out how to best handle their lawsuit.
The applicable standard
Civil cases involving injuries on a piece of property generally look for some kind of mistake or oversight by the owner or person responsible for its maintenance. Most legal issues that deal with premises liability and negligence focus on the duty of care imposed on the defendant. In situations where the landowner had no chance to correct an error or unsafe condition, it is much more difficult to prove negligence. However, failure to remedy a known risk can be considered a breach of the duty of care or even reckless behavior. Common reasons for injury lawsuits include unsafe walkways, hazardous chemicals or materials, spills, natural overgrowth, and other obstacles that can clearly result in injuries. If problems such as this are left unchecked, it will usually be considered a breach of the duty of care.
Contested issues about property conditions
A property owner should take some basic steps to keep areas safe and clear, especially when guests or customers are expected. Evidence may include cleaning or maintenance records. There may also be incident reports if others had been hurt on the property in the past due to similar conditions and problems. This process can vary greatly depending on whether the property is used for residential, commercial, or industrial purposes. The victim may also need to spend time to locate the owner or company that leases the property to track down these kinds of records.
Investigating the property
The victim and their attorney can take photos of the area, request video surveillance, take other investigative steps to see if there were obvious issues that contributed to the injury. This inquiry can also include looking at the intended uses of the property, along with what measures were taken to prevent harm and keep the area secure. If evidence of severe negligence is uncovered, this can be crucial for the victim’s case.
Assistance from attorneys in the state of Iowa
Anyone who needs help from a licensed lawyer can contact Eells and Tronvold Law Offices. The firm handles various types of injury lawsuits and accident cases for clients throughout the state.
Firm contact info:
Eells and Tronvold Law Offices
1921 51st Street NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-2400