We all spend time on private commercial property at one point or another. When walking around a shopping center, or living in an apartment building, we also expect to be relatively safe while on that property. Unfortunately, violent crimes occur every day across the country, some of which occur in these privately-owned, publicly-accessible places.
Property owners are obligated to reduce the risk of injury for their patrons, which includes reducing the risk of violent crimes. They can do this by taking proper security measures to ensure their guests are safe, but when they fail to do so, they leave their guests at risk of serious injury and even death.
If you were injured as a result of a crime on someone else’s property, you may be able to file a claim against the negligent property owner and recover compensation for your injuries. The Houston personal injury lawyers at Reich & Binstock can help you hold the negligent parties responsible and receive the financial compensation you deserve. Call our law firm at (713) 622-7271 to receive a free consultation regarding your negligent security case.
What Is Negligent Security?
Property owners have a duty to reasonably protect their visitors, patrons, and occupants from harm. This includes taking measures to reduce the chances of a crime taking place on their property, causing injury to a guest. A negligent security incident occurs when a business owner or property owner fails to take these measures, and their negligence causes one of their guests to become the victim of a crime.
For example, if the owner of a gas station knows that the area surrounding their property has a high crime rate, they should take precautions to prevent their patrons from becoming a victim of crime. This can include installing security cameras inside and outside the establishment, as well as ensuring their parking lot and gas pumps are well-lit. If they fail to take reasonable measures to protect the people on their property, and someone suffers injury, they may be found financially liable for their negligence.
Examples of Negligent Security
Negligent security cases can occur in a wide variety of settings and can often be linked to a few key causes, like a lack of security cameras, lack of security guards, or inadequate lighting. Below are some examples of inadequate safety measures some property owners may have.
Adequate lighting can not only prevent injury, but it can also help prevent crimes from occurring. If a parking lot is not well lit, and someone who parked their car there is robbed, the victim may be able to take legal action against the property owner to recover compensation for their injuries.
Lack of Security Systems
Property owners should also take reasonable steps to deter crime by installing certain security systems. Not every gas station needs a security guard, but they should have functioning security cameras placed inside and outside the gas station to ensure crimes are caught on camera if they do occur. Broken, outdated, or unmonitored security cameras may be considered inadequate security in a negligent security claim.
No Security Guards
Negligent security cases often involve situations where a property owner fails to employ security guards to protect their guests. For example, a shopping center may have one or more security guards regularly patrolling the parking lot to ensure people aren’t robbed after shopping. If they don’t, they may be liable for robberies that occur as a result.
Venues with a large number of people, like concerts or sporting events, should also take adequate safety measures to protect their visitors from harm, like hiring well-trained security personnel to prevent and address emergencies, like a fight or a crowd surge. Hiring untrained security guards or not hiring enough security guards could make them liable for damages in a negligent security lawsuit.
Common Locations of Negligent Security
Any kind of commercial property can lack adequate safety measures, some of which include:
- Apartment complexes
- Nursing homes
- Gas stations
- Parking garages
- Night clubs
- Concert venues
- College campuses
- Shopping centers
When property owners fail to employ adequate security measures, they can cause serious personal injury and even wrongful death. If you or a loved one have suffered from injuries as a result of a negligent property owner, the negligent security attorneys at Reich & Binstock can help you seek justice and receive fair compensation. Call (713) 622-7271 to schedule a free consultation with one of our team members.
What Is a Negligent Security Lawsuit?
Property owners have a responsibility to protect visitors from harm, so when a personal injury occurs as a result of a property owner’s lack of care, injury victims can demand financial compensation through a premises liability claim. When people think of premises liability claims, they often think of slip and fall accidents, but a property owner can also be found liable if any violent crime or crimes committed on their property cause harm to a guest.
If a person suffers from injuries on someone else’s property as a result of a crime, they may be able to file a claim and receive compensation. However, their case may only be successful if they can prove that the property did not have adequate security measures in place. Many negligent security cases deal with damages and injuries from crimes like robbery, physical assault, and sexual assault.
Do You Have the Basis for a Negligent Security Claim?
If you have been a victim of a crime that occurred as a result of inadequate security, you may have a basis for a negligent security claim. However, to accurately determine whether or not you have a solid basis for a claim, you should speak to a negligent security attorney. The lawyers at Reich & Binstock can help discuss your situation and determine whether or not it would hold up in court. Call us at (713) 622-7271 or contact us online so we can evaluate your case.
How Can a Negligent Security Lawyer Help Your Case?
When a property owner fails to keep their property safe, and a criminal attack occurs, the crime victims deserve justice. Negligent security claims can be tricky, but a skilled premises liability law firm can examine the case, gather necessary evidence, and prove negligence to ensure the responsible party or parties are held liable. They can also ensure the victim receives compensation equal to their damages, like medical bills, lost wages, and even psychological damage, which is prevalent in cases like sexual abuse claims.
Proving the Elements of Negligent Security
Personal injury suits revolve around negligence, which occurs when someone behaves in a way that causes undue harm to another person. After a car accident, the person who caused the accident may be found negligent if they were texting while driving, which caused the accident. In a premises liability case, a property owner may be found negligent if they fail to provide proper security to keep their visitors safe.
In a personal liability case, lawyers can prove negligence if the property owner had a responsibility to protect their guests and then failed to protect their guests, which caused a guest to be hurt. For example, if a store is in an area with a high crime rate but has inadequate security measures, lawyers may be able to use that fact to prove negligence.
Proving negligence in any injury case can be tricky, but negligent security attorneys will know what to look for to prove negligence, so they can help you seek justice.
Identifying All Liable Parties
Negligent security lawyers will also be able to ensure all negligent parties are held accountable for their actions (or their inaction). In some cases, there may be only one party responsible for the lack of security, like a business owner. In other cases, there may be multiple people involved, like the managers, property owners, and security personnel at an apartment complex.
While it can be difficult to sue anyone, it can be especially difficult to know how to sue a company. A negligent security attorney can help determine and identify all parties responsible for your injuries, to help you receive compensation from all liable parties.
Determining the Value of Your Case
A negligent security attorney can also help determine the value of your case. When a negligent property owner fails to protect a guest, they can suffer severe injuries due to a crime. An attorney can help determine the extent of the damages you suffered due to the property owner’s negligence, including calculating the value of past and future medical bills, lost income, and any pain and suffering you may have experienced.
Gathering Evidence to Support Your Claim
To prove your claim in court, you’ll need extensive evidence. Negligent security lawyers can investigate the circumstances of your injury and collect evidence that proves you were the victim of a crime and that the property owner was negligent.
They can acquire police reports from the incident detailing the crime, medical records documenting any significant injuries, and witness testimonies proving the location was unprotected. They can even gather evidence that could prove the property owner knew their establishment was not protected from criminal activity, like a previous crime that occurred on the premises.
Negotiating with the Defendant and Insurance Company
Not every negligent security claim makes it to civil court, and some property owners may be more willing to settle cases outside of court. In your case, this could mean the negligent property owner agrees to pay you a set amount for your damages. A negligent security attorney can help negotiate with the other side’s legal team to ensure you receive a settlement amount that is fair and reasonable for the damages you suffered. If the property owner is only willing to compensate you for your monetary losses, your attorney may be able to negotiate to help you recover compensation for financial and non-financial damages.
How Long Do I Have to File a Negligent Security Lawsuit?
In Texas, premises liability claims and negligent security claims are categorized as personal injury claims. The statute of limitations on personal injury cases in Texas is two years from the date the incident occurred. If the premises liability incident resulted in wrongful death, the two-year clock starts counting down on the day of the victim’s death.
Do I Need a Negligent Security Lawyer?
If you were the victim of a crime because a property owner failed to protect you from harm, you may want to consider hiring a negligent security attorney. They can guide you through the entire process and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Contact Reich & Binstock for Your Negligent Security Case
When a property owner fails to provide adequate security for their guests, they can cause them serious harm. If you or a loved one has become the victim of a crime on someone else’s property, the negligent security attorneys at Reich & Binstock can help you receive compensation for your losses.
We provide our legal services on a contingency fee basis, which means that you will only have to pay us if we help you recover compensation. We also offer a free consultation to all new clients, so call us at (713) 622-7271 to schedule yours.