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Premises Liability

Nobody welcomes violent crime at their business or home. However, for some, a violent crime is foreseeable at their location because of the type of business in which they are engaged, the neighborhood, past history of criminal activity in the area, or other factors. When that’s the case, businesses and individuals are legally required to take steps to keep those legally upon their premises safe from harm. If they fail to adequately take steps to protect people upon their property, and, people are injured in a resulting crime, victims have the right to hold the property owners, managers, security subcontractors, tenants and others responsible for their injuries and losses; and may bring a lawsuit claiming inadequate security.

Every day in the United States people are victims of unanticipated criminal attacks, and, can suffer grievous injuries or even death. Remarkably, many of those crimes are potentially preventable, as often the victims are customers of commercial ventures, tenants in rental properties or condominiums, or, individuals in locations where property owners owe them a duty of protection from foreseeable harm. In addition, in certain locations, (e.g., near ATM machines and in mall and shopping center parking lots), and, in locations with a history of criminal activity, where the potential for criminal attack is foreseeable, it is incumbent upon the property owners and managers to take appropriate and necessary steps to ensure the safety of people lawfully invited onto the premises.

Many lay people are unaware that they may receive monetary compensation through the civil justice system when there is injury or death as a result of a preventable criminal attack.

Any property owner including businesses, landlords, homeowners or even government agencies, and possibly others associated with the property, may be held legally liable for failing to protect its visitors, renters or customers. Inadequate security might sound like a simple failure to hire security guards, but that’s just one form of inadequate security. Others include:

  • Insufficient lighting in areas known to be dangerous
  • Failure to install or maintain locks, alarms and cameras
  • Negligence by guards
  • Failure to monitor security cameras

Because of the nature of violent crime, inadequate security injuries in Maryland and beyond are frequently serious and traumatic injuries such as physical or sexual assault, some resulting in wrongful death. These are serious, life-changing injuries that can leave victims permanently disabled or emotionally traumatized. They can also be very expensive injuries to treat medically and otherwise; often causing tens of thousands of dollars in medical and therapy bills, as well as lost wages. An inadequate security lawsuit can help victims recover those and other expenses caused by a property owner’s careless attitude toward foreseeable risks.

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