Property owners can often be held accountable when someone is injured while on their property. This is because of premises liability, which is a legal concept that states property owners are responsible for maintaining safe conditions on their property. However, it’s important to understand that a property owner is not always held liable in these cases. A number of factors are considered when determining the property owner’s liability, including the reason why the victim was on the property. Here’s what you should know about licensees vs. invitees vs. trespassers in premises liability cases:
Licensees vs. Invitees vs. Trespassers
The law classifies each type of visitor as a licensee, invitee, or trespasser. A trespasser is a visitor who has entered or remained on the property without the property owner’s permission.
Both licensees and invitees are legally allowed to be on the property, but their purpose for being there is different. An invitee is someone who was invited to the property, either expressly or implicitly, by the property owner. People who are there to do business are also considered invitees. For example, a customer who visits a grocery store to shop for groceries is an invitee.
An invitee’s presence is mutually beneficial, however a licensee’s presence is not. Licensees are visitors who are on the property with the property owner’s consent. However, they are there for their own convenience or to advance their own interests. For example, a party guest is classified as a licensee since he is there to enjoy himself.
How the Classification of the Victim Affects the Case
The injured victim’s classification will have an impact on the case. The law states that trespassers cannot recover compensation unless the property owner deliberately injured him. Licensees can recover damages if they were injured by a hazardous condition that the property owner created. They can also recover damages if the property owner knew about a hazardous condition on the property, but failed to warn them about it. Invitees have the right to recover compensation when they are injured by a hazardous condition that the property owner knew about or should have known about.
For example, let’s say someone trips on uneven flooring and injures himself. If the person is a trespasser, he cannot recover compensation since the property owner did not deliberately try to hurt him. If the person is a licensee, he can recover compensation if the property owner was the one who made the flooring uneven, or if the property owner did not warn him about the uneven flooring. Invitees will be able to recover compensation in this situation as long as they are able to prove that the property owner knew about the uneven flooring or should have known about it if he was a responsible landowner.
The classification of victims injured on public or private property could affect their ability to recover compensation. If you have been injured while on another person’s property, contact Reisch Law Firm right away. Our personal injury attorneys will review your case to determine the best way to recover compensation for your injuries. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.