Premises Liability and Duty of Care

I’ve recently become more interested in premises liability cases and how they work. The outcome of premises liability claims is determined with respect to the property owner’s duty of care to the victim. While property owners should keep their premises properly maintained in order to not cause injury to those who occupy their spaces, the property owner does not owe all visitors the same amount of regard. Under duty of care laws, there are three different categorizations of visitors, an invitee, a licensee, or a trespasser. The amount of compensation, if any, in a premises liability case will depend on which category the plaintiff falls under.


Invitees are owed the most protection under premises liability law. Invitees are those who either have explicit or implicit permission to inhabit the property. For domestic cases, some examples of an invitee include relatives, friends, and neighbors. For workplaces, an invitee would include employees and workers hired to tend to the property. Additionally, shoppers in retail spaces are also a good example of an invitee. If you are ever injured in a premises liability accident as an invitee, chances are that you will be far likelier to recover the compensation that you need to deal with your injuries.


While licensees aren’t owed as much protection under the law as invitees they still have some protections. Licensees are guests on a property whose presence is permitted but not explicitly beneficial to the business of the property owner. For example, a pharmaceutical sales representative is an example of a licensee on the premises of a hospital or clinic. They are permitted to be there, but they are not owed the same rights as an employee or patient.


Trespassers are owed almost no protections under the law in the event that they are injured while on a certain property. Since they are not invited or in any way permitted, it is not the fault of the property owner. A property owner, however, can not set any traps to intentionally cause harm. In the instance that the property owner intentionally sets out to harm a trespasser, then they may be eligible to take legal action for the injuries that they endure.

Breach of Care

When a property owner fails to secure safe conditions in order to protect the people on their premises, it is referred to as a breach of care. Of course, depending on the category of the person injured, the severity of the breach will be evaluated differently when determining liability. According to information provided by the Myrtle Beach Employment Law Attorneys personal injury accidents have a far greater cost to victims than just hospital bills and often includes other expenses like rehabilitative care, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses.

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