What Is Premises Liability and Why Do I Need a Lawyer

by Andrew Mounier on January 28, 2013

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premise liabilityAny person who owns property is responsible for the safety of any person that they invite onto their property. If any person injures themselves as the result of a slip or fall, equipment on the property, or the actions of the property owner, then they are entitled to damages to cover their medical costs. Accidents happen all the time, but sometimes the accident could have been avoided and was the result of neglect on somebody’s behalf. This is why premises liability laws were created: to protect people who have been injured because of poorly maintained property.

Who Can Sue Under Premises Liability?

There are four categories of people who may be on a property at any given time. Two of these types of people are able to sue for damages under premise liability laws: one category is the person they are suing and the last category is unable to sue for personal injury damages. Below are the four categories broken down.

First, the possessor is the person who is under control of the land or premises when the damage takes place. Under premise liability laws, a person is the possessor if he or she is in occupation of the land, used to be in occupation of the land with no person occupying it after them, or if they are entitled to occupation of the land with no other person in possession. This is the person responsible for the safety of the people on their land.

An invitee is a person who comes to the property for business purposes. They have been invited onto the property by the owner so that they can buy or rent a product from the owner. Even though the invitee has not been expressly invited onto the property, the idea of an invitation is there and they may sue.

A licensee is the person who has been invited onto a personal property for recreational purposes. If your friend invites you over for a drink or to a party, then you are a licensee and can sue.

Trespassers are breaking the law when they enter a property, so they cannot sue for damages under premise liability law.


Why You Need a Lawyer

Because of the many factors involved with premise liability cases, (such as who owns the property, who is responsible for the injury and what factors surrounded the accident), it is important to have a qualified lawyer working on your side so that they can untangle the events and find out who is really responsible for the accident. Without an attorney, it can be almost impossible to launch a premise liability case.


If you have been injured on somebody’s property and aren’t sure if you have a premise liability case then you should contact a personal injury lawyer to help you go over the case. On the other hand, if you are a possessor of a property and somebody injures themselves on your property, you should also contact a personal injury lawyer so that they can inform you of whether or not a lawsuit will be pending. Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. has a team of experienced premises liability lawyers serving Illinois communities.  For more information about premises liability, visit the website at www.SalviLaw.com.


Andrew Mounier
Andrew Mounier is a Content Engineer and Author. He has worked in marketing for over a decade and finds his passion in bringing concepts to life for the world to enjoy. He is also an avid legal blogger and currently working on a book with his wife about social entrepreneurship. He is a true Socialpreneur and finds that his goal in life is to be an agent for positive social change through both his writing and business endeavors.
Andrew Mounier
Andrew Mounier

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