Slip and Fall

As a general rule, the owner of real estate must act reasonably to insure the safety of persons who enter the premises. If a dangerous condition exists on the premises, the owner may be liable to someone injured as a result of the owner's breach of his duty to maintain the property in a safe condition, free from defects.

Sometimes the owner's liability for an injury depends on the classification of the premises as either "residential" or "commercial." For example, under many, but not all, circumstances a residential property owner may be found not to be liable to someone injured on the abutting sidewalk because the owner did not owe a duty to repair a sidewalk defect. The owner or occupant of commercial property, however, has a duty to maintain adjacent sidewalks in reasonably good condition and may be liable to a pedestrian who is injured as a result of the failure to fulfill that duty.

In New Jersey, business owners have a duty of care to maintain safe premises for their business invitees. This duty requires the business owner to take reasonable precautions to prevent the occurrence of harm to patrons invited onto the business premises. A business owner must guard against dangerous conditions on the property that the owner either knows about or should have discovered. A property owner owes a higher degree of care to a business patron than to a social guest because the former is in furtherance of commercial interests. Under certain circumstances, a business patron may waive his or her right to sue a business owner or occupier for injuries the patron sustained on the business premises by signing a pre-injury waiver of liability agreement.

If you were injured as a result of a slip (or trip) and fall, call Katkocin Law Office in Medford, New Jersey, at 856-283-0800 for a free initial telephone evaluation of your potential claim.