One of the most basic tenets of personal injury law is that people are responsible for injuries that happen on their property, if those injuries are the result of their negligence. While this may seem simple in theory, in practice it can be difficult to determine who is at fault in certain accidents, such as when people fall from a ladder. But how do you determine if you are legally liable from someone falling from a ladder on your property
The Basic Duty of Care
Everyone has a certain legal responsibility to other people known as a “duty of care.” Put simply, this is the level of care a person must take to avoid harm being done to others. For most people, this simply means avoiding doing activities that are reasonably likely to result in harm to others. Property owners, however, have the additional requirement to warn others of known hazards on their property, and to take steps to repair those hazards in a timely fashion.
What Might Make Someone Legally Liable
When someone falls from a ladder and injures themselves on someone else’s property, it is possible that the property owner may be held legally liable. There are a few reasons why this might be, including, but not limited to:
- The ladder was defective or poorly maintained
- The ladder collapsed or tilted due to undisclosed hazards on the property
- The ladder, or the area around the ladder, was slippery or cluttered
- No supervision was provided for the person who fell from the ladder
- The person was injured while performing construction or maintenance
What Might Protect You From Liability
That said, just because someone falls from a ladder on your property does not mean you are automatically legally responsible. Someone who injures themselves due to their own careless actions, for example, is not your responsibility. Alternatively, if their injury was the result of conditions you had no control over, you may also be spared from legal liability.
What You Should Do in the Event of a Ladder Injury on Your Property
That said, you should not leave anything to chance. If someone has been injured due to falling from a ladder on your property, you should immediately contact a lawyer with knowledge of personal injury law. They can consult with you on your case and help you to determine the best course of action for you. The sooner you call, the sooner you can get started on protecting yourself from litigation.
If you have been sued as a result of alleged wrongdoing, you should seek out the personal injury lawyers at Zlotolow & Associates. Our seasoned New York personal injury attorneys bring more than two decades of trial experience to your case. We serve all five boroughs of New York City, as well as Nassau and Suffolk County. Our aggressive personal injury attorneys will work hard to defend you and protect your personal interests. We have helped thousands of clients obtain favorable settlements and courtroom verdicts.