Who is Liable for a Trip & Fall Accident on a Sidewalk?

Posted on Aug 12, 2012 2:55pm PDT

Across the United States, the law mandates that property owners, including residential homeowners, provide a safe environment for all possible visitors that will be stepping foot on the premises. This includes remedying hazardous conditions like broken steps, clearing walkways of tipping dangers, and providing working smoke alarms within the property. A property owner may now, however, be held responsible for the deteriorating conditions of the sidewalk that surrounds the premises. Although homeowners have always been responsible for clearing away any slipping dangers, like ice or snow, on the walkways around their property, they may now be held accountable if a passerby trips on a poorly maintained sidewalk in front of their house.

This can include any instance in which a tree root has caused the concrete of a sidewalk to lift and crack, pool water has leaked onto the walkway, or any other deterioration has caused holes, gaps or cracks in the path of a sidewalk. In the event that someone is jogging or biking past a homeowner's property and subsequently trips, slips or falls on their sidewalk, the property owner may be held liable for the injuries that were sustained. Although liability must be proven in order to pursue a personal injury lawsuit, if it can be shown that the responsible party was aware of the hazardous condition and failed to remedy the problem in a timely manner, they may be held accountable.

If you have been involved in a slip and fall accident on the sidewalk in front of a negligent homeowner's property, or on any other part of their property that was inadequately maintained, you may be able to recover damages for the harm that you have suffered. In order to better understand your rights as an accident victim, however, it is highly advisable that you speak to a knowledgeable personal injury attorney about the circumstances of your injury. To get started on pursuing a premises liability case, contact a lawyer from our firm today.

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