Premises Liability in Nebraska
Premises liability is a legal concept that usually applies in personal injury cases in which the victim's injury was caused by unsafe, dangerous, or hazardous conditions of another person's property. By filing a premises liability claim, the injured person can seek to hold the landowner accountable and recover damages for their injuries.
Common Premises Liability Cases
Some common examples of accidents that may bring about a premises liability claim include:
- Slip and fall incidents
- Accidents caused by ice and snow
- Poor security leading to an injury and assault
- Substandard or inadequate maintenance of premises
- Dog bites and animal attacks
- Swimming pool incidents
- Floods and water leaks
- Broken collapsed staircases
- Escalator and elevator incidents
- Toxic leaks and fumes
- Fire safety and building code violations
- Garage door incidents
- Supermarket incidents
- Porch collapses
- Inadequate lighting
Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations in slip and fall accidents in Nebraska states that a person injured in such an incident on another person's property must commence an action for civil remedy in state courts within four years of the incident or injury (Nebraska Revised Statute 25-207).
When a slip and fall occurs, a number of different persons or entities may be held liable for the incident. These include:
- Property Owner/Homeowner: The landowner or property owner may be held responsible for a slip and fall that occurred on their property.
- Business Owner: The owner of a store or supermarket may be held accountable for the slippery or dangerous conditions on the business's premises that caused the slip and fall incident.
- Government Entity: Slip and fall victims may potentially hold the municipal agency or government entity liable if their injuries occurred in an incident on public property.
- Your Own Carelessness: However, if your oversight or lack of attention contributed to the unfortunate incident, the court may shift the burden of blame onto you.
Proving fault or establishing liability in a slip and fall case requires you to show the following elements:
- The defendant owned, leased, or occupied the premises.
- The defendant owed you a legal duty to keep the property in a safe condition or warn you of potential harm.
- The owner should have known it was dangerous by "reasonable" person standards.
- The property owner's negligence caused the condition that led to your injuries.
- The owner failed to fix the unsafe conditions, thereby causing your injuries.
- You suffered injuries or damages.
Modified Comparative Fault
Nebraska follows a modified comparative fault rule with a 50% bar. Under this system, the amount of compensation you may recover will reduce in proportion to your percentage of fault. You will be completely barred from recovering any damages if you were found to be equally or mostly (50% or more) at fault for the incident.
For example, if the court awards $30,000 in damages against the at-fault party and you were found to have been 10% responsible for the slip and fall incident, your damages will be reduced by $3,000 and you will only be able to collect $27,000 from the initial amount awarded.
Work with an Experienced Attorney
Premises liability claims are incredibly complex and can be difficult to prove in court. Notwithstanding the extent of your injuries, you may face various challenges when trying to prove liability and recover damages. Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney is the first step toward protecting your rights and pursuing the financial justice you deserve.
At Harris & Associates, P.C., L.L.O., our team is committed to offering reliable legal services and representing clients in their slip and fall cases. As your legal counsel, we can
- Fight to protect your rights and represent your best interests
- Review and investigate all of the surrounding facts of your case
- Estimate the magnitude of your injuries, other losses, and determine the case value
- Handle all communications and negotiations with the insurance providers
- Take additional legal action, if necessary