What is Premises Liability and How Does it Work?
Millions of visitors come to Vegas each year to take in the sights and enjoy the many amusements that the city has to offer. One issue that often goes unnoticed, however, is when a company does not keep their property up in the correct manner, leading to injuries and even deaths in the patrons.
We refer to lawsuits of this nature as premises liability suits, since companies have an obligation to provide a safe environment for patrons to come to, and these suits are not just limited to the Vegas Strip. All across America, amusement parks, casinos, shopping malls, and even grocery stores have an obligation to upkeep their properties to prevent injuries to consumers--if not, they could be facing a personal injury lawsuit.
A Case Study of Premises Liability
At the Hyatt Regency in Kansas City in 1981, two walkways collapsed onto a dance floor below, killing 114 and injuring another 216 people. One of the deadliest structural collapses in history prior to 9/11, the walkway collapse was caused by engineering failures that stemmed from a lack of communication between two of the contractors working on the building.
This event was a game-changer when it came to safety and liability concerns in hotels and other recreational facilities. Due to this walkway collapse and the subsequent injuries and deaths it caused, over 300 civil lawsuits were filed, seeking a cumulative total in the billions--of this, almost $150 million was awarded to the injured and the families of those who died. A class action suit was filed as well and eventually awarded punitive damages to 1,300 of the 1,600 people who had stayed in the hotel that night.
The collapse and aftermath of this event is the perfect example of a situation where premises liability comes into play. Many companies may be responsible or have a role in upkeeping different parts of these premises, and this can greatly affect who is sued in the event of a personal injury lawsuit.
How to Handle An Injury If a Company is Liable
We all enter public spaces each day with a certain level of trust. From the grocery store, to your workplace, to the daycare you drop your kids off at each day--we all expect that these spaces will be safe for us. However, improper or neglected maintenance on properties can lead to serious injuries and it is not your fault for unknowingly being exposed to these dangerous situations.
Injuring yourself can lead to not only pain and suffering, but also to large medical bills. For instance, if you fall due to a crumbling curb or slippery floor and break a leg, you should not be liable for the medical bills you will incur in order to take care of your health. Companies have a responsibility to keep their facilities and properties in a safe and working order, and if that responsibility is not met and you are injured, they can be found at fault.
If you find yourself injured due to the improper upkeep of a property, contact a personal injury attorney immediately. The earlier you are able to file suit against the company responsible, the more likely they will want to settle the matter without needing to engage in a long and drawn-out court battle. You have a right to be safe when you enter a public space, and any company that takes that away from you deserves to pay.
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