Slip and Fall Claims In New Jersey
From your neighbor’s sidewalk to your neighborhood grocery store, there are endless places where you could suffer a slip, trip, or fall. If you do end up falling and suffering a serious injury, who exactly is responsible? The answer to this question depends on where you fell. In New Jersey, the responsibilities that are owed to you by a property owner are determined by the type of property you slipped, tripped, or fell on – whether residential, commercial, or public.
Residential. If you fall while on private residential property or the sidewalk located in front of a private residence, it is possible to hold the homeowner responsible for your slip, trip, or fall. With respect to residential sidewalks, although the owner of a residential property is not generally responsible for wear and tear defects cause by the elements, they could be responsible for dangerous sidewalk conditions that were caused by their own actions.
Commercial Property. If you fall while on commercial property, such as while at a grocery store or a restaurant, or on the sidewalk located in front of commercial property, the owner of the property could be held responsible. In general, commercial property owners are responsible for dangerous conditions that they either knew about or that they should have known about in enough time to either warn of the condition or to fix the condition.
If you fall in your apartment or in the common areas of your apartment complex, your landlord may be responsible. In general, landlords have the duty of commercial landowners. This means that they are responsible for inspecting, repairing, and maintaining all areas of the property that are under their control. If a tenant or guest is injured by a dangerous condition that would have been discoverable through pursuant to a reasonable inspection by the landlord, then the landlord may be liable.
Public Space. If you slip and fall on public property, such as while at a park or a municipal building, the government could be responsible for your injuries. Public entities are responsible for injuries caused by dangerous conditions on their property, subject to the specific requirements that are contained within the New Jersey Tort Claims Act (also known as Title 59). If you decide to pursue a premises liability claim against a governmental entity under this section, however, it is important to note that there are strict guidelines that must be complied with. For example, if you fail to file a Tort Claim Notice with the appropriate entity within 90 days after the date of the accident, you could forever lose your right to bring a lawsuit for the accident.
Premise Liability Attorneys Can Protect Your Rights to Compensation
If you suffer injury after a slip and fall, it is important that you seek a personal injury attorney that is experienced in the area of premises liability law in New Jersey. Contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Harrell, Smith and Williams today to schedule a free consultation. You can reach us at (908) 264-7288.