Every person has the right to live in a safe and hazard free home. Unfortunately, many landlords are often negligent when it comes to ensuring the home is safe for occupancy. It can take time and money away from a landlord if they focus on preventing accidents. However, the repercussions for not taking precautions for renter safety can prove to be financially devastating for them.
It is not uncommon for a renter to trip or fall on an uneven floorboard or set of stairs due to a construction flaw or damage to the stairs. In the worst case scenario, a renter can suffer a serious brain injury if he or she endures a bad fall. The next question may be, is the landlord liable? If this describes your scenario, your landlord may be held responsible if the brain injury was a direct result of their carelessness or negligence. Below, we answer some common questions associated with landlord liability in a personal injury claim.
What are the Signs of a Brain Injury?
Immediately following an accident, it can be hard to tell whether or not there are serious injuries, particularly if there are no visual symptoms. When it comes to brain injuries, the most common signs you may observe can include the following:
- Difficulty remembering recent events
- Feeling sluggish
- Unusual tiredness
- Frequent dizziness
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Severe headache or pain
- Numbness on one side of body
- Feeling weak
Can I Prove My Landlord is at Fault?
Proving your landlord was at fault can be challenging, but is possible. It may be helpful to your personal injury claim to gather evidence that the following occurred:
- The landlord was aware of the condition that caused the injury, but failed to adequately fix the problem.
- The landlord was given notice of the condition, but did not respond with a solution within a reasonable time frame.
- The landlord should have been aware of the condition, but was negligent in maintaining the property.
- The landlord attempted to repair, but it was not sufficient or was not fixed in a timely manner.
What are Necessary Factors in a Negligence Claim?
In general, in order for a person to be held liable for negligence, the injured person must show the following:
- The defendant owed a specific duty to injured party
- The defendant committed a breach in his or her specific duty
- The breach of specific duty caused the physical injury
- The injured party endured physical and financial damages
In the specific case of landlord versus tenant who suffered a brain injury, arises the question of if the landlord owed a duty to the renter. In most cases, the landlord must keep common areas of the home in a safe condition and habitable. For example, stair railings must be secure, doors work correctly and there are no broken stairs, uneven floorboards or loose wires.
Can an Attorney Be Helpful?
Because of the complicated nature of such cases, many people choose to consult with an attorney, like a personal injury lawyer relies on, for legal advice. Most reputable law firms will offer prospective clients a free personal injury claim evaluation.