Premise Slip and Fall

In General


Premise liability law protects individuals who have been injured in a fall due to negligent or willful disregard of the property, by its owner, where the incident took place.



Premises Liability Law


If a person is injured on the property of another, a court will impose liability on the property owner or possessor under premises liability law if:

1. the property owner or possessor owed the injured person a duty of care, and


2. the property owner or possessor breached that duty of care.  Whether the property owner or possessor owed the injured person a duty of care, as well as the extent of care owed, depends on the relationship between the person owning or holding the property and the injured person.


There are three types of relationships between the owner or possessor and the injured person:

1. Invitee

An invitee is a person who is invited upon the premises in order to conduct business with the possessor. For example, shoppers are invitees of department stores because the department store welcomes shoppers to purchase merchandise on its premises. Typically, possessors of property owe invitees the highest duty of care. Property owners or possessors should regularly inspect the premises to detect unsafe conditions and to promptly repair or warn invitees about such conditions.

2. Licensee

A licensee is a person who is present for a non-commercial, non-business purpose at the consent of the possessor of the property, such as a social guest at someone's residence.  A possessor of premises owes the same or similar duty of care to licensees as it is owed to invitees.

3. Traspasser

Property owners owe the lowest duty of care to trespassers. Typically, property possessors have no duty to warn trespassers of dangers naturally occurring on the premises, such as quicksand. However, if the possessor is aware of the trespasser, then usually a duty arises to warn the trespasser of dangerous, man-made conditions on the property, such as an electric fence that emits a lethal shock.

However, if a child trespasses on land, the property owner or possessor owes a higher duty to warn, repair, and protect from harm, since children are less able to detect dangers because of their youth and inexperience.


Premises Liability & Employees


If an employee is injured at work on the employer's premises, worker's compensation law typically applies rather than premises liability law.



Burden of Proof


To impose liability against the owner of premises or its possessor, the injured person must present the evidence that will show that the owner's breach of a duty is a direct cause of injuries one claims. If an injured person alleges a fall as a consequence of a “foreign slippery substance” on the floor of the premises, she must prove the following:


1. That the substance was placed on premises' floor by negligent acts or omissions of the proprietor or his employees;


2. That owner or possessor and/or his employees knew of the presence of slippery substance on premises' floor; or


3. That the slippery substance was on premises’ floor long enough so that in the exercise of ordinary care, its presence should have been discovered, i.e., the owner or possessor had constructive notice of presence of slippery substance on premises’ floor



If your injury falls into one of these categories, please do not hesitate to contact us. We'll assess your incident and if you have cause to file a premise liability suit, we will zealously protect your rights in order to obtain compensation you deserve.



Have More Questions?

Call our office at 312-644-4545 to discuss your situation with one of our attorneys today.