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Recovering for Injuries when Assaulted at a Business

Posted on in Personal Injury

Calfornia injury laws, California personal injury attorneyImagine you are at an ATM bank machine, and after you make a withdrawal, you are violently attacked and robbed. Under California law, it may be possible that the bank, other business owner or property owner where the attack took place is liable for your injuries. This area of law is called “ premises liability.”

Premises liability is separate from criminal law. Going back to the ATM example, the district attorney could prosecute your attacker, and the court could sentence him to jail time. In addition, a personal injury attorney could file a suit based on premises liability against the business or property owner in an attempt to get you monetary compensation for your injuries.

Business owners are generally required to take measures to protect visitors from crimes committed at the business. Business or property owners, especially those in high crime areas, could have a duty to provide security personnel, good lighting, security cameras, locks, alarms, and fences.

In order to have a successful premises liability claim, you will have to prove:

1. That the business owes a duty of care to you. This is determined by balancing:

  • The foreseeability of the harm, and
  • The burden of the duty to be imposed.

For example, a court will look at the chances of violence at the particular location balanced against the cost of security measures.

2. That the business breached that duty and that the breach caused the injuries.

Examples of premises liability and negligent security come up in other situations, including:

  • Violent confrontations at nightclubs;
  • Assaults in stairwells;
  • Attacks in parking lots and garages;
  • Gas station robberies; and
  • Fights at sporting events.

Injuries stemming from sexual assault on a business premises can also be recoverable under the same legal theories.

In order to have a successful claim, oftentimes you will need to present expert witnesses at trial who will testify to the reasonableness of certain security measures. If you can prove that a business or property owner is liable, you may be awarded the following types of damages:

  • Medical costs;
  • Pain and suffering;
  • Loss of income; and
  • Loss of earning potential.

If you were attacked at a business and have suffered injuries, the first step to take in order to recover monetary damages is to contact the San Jose personal injury attorneys at Jachimowicz Law Group, Attorneys at Law, Inc. Call 408-246-5500 for a free consultation.

 

Source:

http://scocal.stanford.edu/opinion/ann-m-v-pacific-plaza-shopping-center-31563

 

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