South Florida Liability Law Experts
Under Florida’s premises liability law, property owners have a duty to keep their properties safe for others. If somebody is injured on the property of another, the injured party may be able to file a lawsuit against the owner. In these cases, the injured party has the burden to prove that his or her injuries occurred due to the negligence of the property owner. To succeed in such lawsuits, injured parties must typically show:
- The property owner knew or should have known of a dangerous condition;
- The property owner failed to give a proper warning of the condition; and
- An injury occurred due to the dangerous condition.
While property owners are responsible for the safety of others on their property, the level of care owed is dependent upon the status of the “visitor.” Those who are present on the property of another fall into one of three categories:
- Licensees; or
- Business invitees
Trespassers are defined as those who are not permitted to be on the property by the property owner. The owner simply owes a trespasser the duty of ensuring no hidden dangers exist on the property.
Licensees are those who are on the property by invitation, solely for social purposes (family, friends). Property owners owe licensees the duty of reasonable care to keep the property safe and repair any unsafe conditions. The duty also includes that which is owed to a trespasser.
Business invitees are those on the property for business purposes and are owed the highest level of care. The duties owed to business invitees include those listed above, as well the duty to regularly inspect the property for unknown dangerous conditions.