Articles Posted in Premises Liability

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carnivalTraveling fairs and carnivals can be a great source of fun for the entire family. Ferris wheels, sweet treats, and an assortment of games are designed to provide relatively inexpensive entertainment to all ages. While most people enjoy these places without incident, the reality is some do sustain preventable injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury at a local fair or carnival, you need to reach out to a skilled Miami premises liability attorney who can help. At our Law Offices, we are committed to getting clients the compensation they deserve for their harm.

According to the Outdoor Amusement Business Association (OABA), an estimated 500 million guests visit carnivals, fairs, and festivals each year. OABA believes that over half of these individuals partake of mobile amusement rides. Given the favorable climate, a number of fairs and carnivals take place in Florida each year. The Consumer Product Safety Commission regulates traveling carnival rides, but it is often understaffed and does not sufficiently monitor the rides for safety. While the risk of injury is relatively low, one in 9 million according to OABA, the reality is some people do get injured. Injuries at a carnival or fair can happen in a variety of ways, including but not limited to:

    • Ride injuries (i.e., on roller coasters, Ferris wheels, merry-go-rounds, or carousels);
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pedestrian bridgeIf you or someone close to you has been injured or killed in a preventable accident on someone else’s property, you need to reach out to a seasoned Miami premises liability attorney who can help you understand your legal rights and options.

Earlier this month, a pedestrian bridge collapsed at Florida International University that killed six people and injured nine others. Now, a man who claims he was seriously injured while riding his bicycle under the bridge at the time it collapsed is suing the University for damages. The lawsuit will seek to answer many of the same questions under investigation by federal and state officials. The National Transportation Safety Board is trying to figure out the exact cause of the accident. One of the main issues in the case is if there was reason to know the bridge was in a dangerous condition. There are reports that the lead engineer noticed the cracks on the bridge and called a state official to warn of these cracks, but he insisted there was no immediate cause for concern.

Those injured in the bridge collapse will likely be able to recover compensation through a negligence claim. Negligence law intends to hold individuals accountable who act carelessly with little regard for others’ safety. To show negligence, however, the plaintiff does not need to show that the defendant had ill intent or meant to cause the harm. Instead, negligence takes place when a person or company fails to use the level of care and caution that a person or company using reasonable care would have used in the same or similar circumstances. For example, a company using reasonable care would have taken prompt action to remedy cracks on a bridge, understanding the potential risk of accidents, injuries, and death associated with such cracks.

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shopping-300x221Trip and fall accidents can lead to extremely serious injuries, such as broken bones, neck and back injuries, and even brain injuries. If you have been injured at a shopping center, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the property owner. At the Law Offices, our seasoned Florida premises liability attorneys are committed to helping clients pursue the compensation they need for their harm.

A customer who was injured after she tripped over a shopping cart left in an Orlando Walmart aisle filed a personal injury claim against the retail store. The facts of the case were as follows. On February 5, 2016, the plaintiff was at Walmart when she tripped and fell over a shopping cart that was left in the walkway. As a result of this fall, the plaintiff claims she suffered bodily injury, pain and suffering, disability, mental anguish, lost wages, and medical costs. The plaintiff alleges that the defendant shopping center failed to use due care to maintain its premises in safe conditions. Specifically, she argues that Walmart failed to properly inspect and maintained the walkway, failed to remedy the hazard, and failed to warn the plaintiff of the hazard.

Shoppers expect a safe environment, free of hazards, when they shop. Property and storeowners are responsible for keeping their premises safe and free of dangers. As a result, if a shopper is hurt in the store, that shopper may be able to hold the property owner accountable through a Florida premises liability claim. Premises liability law makes property owners responsible for certain injuries suffered on the property. The degree of care required from a property owner depends on the type of visitor to the property. Visitors can be categorized in one of three ways:

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slip hazardFlorida restaurants have a legal obligation to keep their properties safe for customers. From the parking lot to the dining spaces, property owners have a duty to make sure that diners are not exposed to dangers. If you or someone close to you has been injured in a slip and fall or trip and fall accident at a restaurant, we can help. At our Law Offices, our seasoned Miami premises liability attorneys can evaluate your case and help you understand your legal rights and options. We are here to answer your questions and address your concerns at every step of the way.

Fall accidents in restaurants are more common than you may think. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) found that there were more than 50,000 reported injuries in the restaurant industry in 2016, a number of which were caused by slip and fall accidents. A number of risk factors, such as spills on walking surfaces as well as rain or mop water on the floors, can lead to slipping hazards that can cause people to slip and fall. In addition, loose mats or rugs, debris, and other hidden hazards can create tripping hazards within a restaurant. According to BLS data, about 15,000 reported nonfatal slip, trip, and fall injuries occurred in the restaurant industry in 2016.

All property owners in Florida have a duty to maintain their property and make sure it is free of hazards in order not to cause injuries to those who enter the land. The specific duty owed by a landowner to a visitor depends on the status of the visitor. For instance, a property owner owes a higher duty of care to a paying customer than a trespasser. In Florida, business owners, including restaurant owners, owe their customers the highest duty of care. These customers are legally categorized as people who are legally known as ‘invitees’ – individuals who are invited onto the property for business reasons. As a result, restaurant owners must protect invitees against known and reasonably ascertainable dangers. For example, if there is a spill on the floor, the restaurant should immediately put a “wet floor” sign to warn customers and then clean up the spill as quickly as possible. If the hazard cannot immediately be remedied, the restaurant should leave signage there or try to block off the area.

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slip hazardIf you have been injured in a trip and fall accident, you need to reach out to a skilled Miami premises liability attorney who can evaluate your case and determine your rights.

The Florida Supreme Court has previously ruled that an express assumption of risk only exists in express contracts not to sue and injuries caused by contact sports. In a recent case, the Fifth District Court of Appeal addressed the concept of assumption of risk in Florida.

Assumption of risk is a common defense used by many defendants in Florida personal injury cases. Under the assumption of risk doctrine, courts can prevent plaintiffs from holding others accountable for their injuries when they engage in an activity that they know is dangerous. In other words, a plaintiff cannot sue for injuries when the plaintiff was partaking in a hazardous activity for which the risks were known.

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storeWhile most retail stores are well-run places where customers can browse and make purchases safely, the reality is that some accidents are bound to happen in these spaces. If you or someone close to you has been injured in a retail store, you may be able to seek compensation for your harm. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, our seasoned Miami premises liability attorneys understand how to navigate these types of cases and can put our knowledge to use in your case.

In a recent lawsuit filed in the Southern District of Florida, a St. Lucie County plaintiff is suing an Apple store for an injury suffered while in the store. According to the complaint, the plaintiff had arrived to the store to have her iPhone repaired. An employee went to retrieve an iPhone case from a wall located within the store. At that time, the store employee dropped a sharp metal shelf bolder on the plaintiff’s left arm while looking for an iPhone case for her.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, accidents do not just happen. In fact, nine out of 10 customer accidents result from some form of negligence. In the case at hand, the plaintiff seeks damages for her injuries, which she alleges are serious and have caused her to become lame and disabled and may even result in permanent injuries. The plaintiff further alleges that her injuries were caused solely by the negligence of the defendant without any contributory negligence on her part.

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schoolBy this time of year, students and parents have typically settled into new school routines in their new classrooms. A new school year can be exciting, and parents expect their children to be safe as their children transition into it. Unfortunately, the reality is that many children in Florida and throughout the United States are injured on school grounds each year. If your child has been hurt in a classroom at school, you need to reach out to a skilled Miami school injury attorney who can evaluate your case and help you pursue the compensation you deserve.

According to the research conducted by the National SAFE KIDS Campaign, an estimated 2.2 million children ages 14 and under sustain school-related injuries each year. While a number of these are unintentional, they are often results of negligence, such as lack of teacher supervision or poorly maintained facilities on a school campus. In fact, lack of supervision causes or contributes to approximately 40 percent of playground injuries.

School injuries can have a variety of causes, including the following:

  • Defective playground equipment;
  • Failure to supervise;
  • Failure to use appropriate safety equipment for a given activity;
  • Improper food preparation;
  • Lack of emergency preparedness;
  • Insufficient maintenance on school grounds (such as not removing asbestos tiles).

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rollerbladeProperty owners in Florida have a legal obligation to keep their premises in a reasonably safe condition so as not to injure those who visit the property. If you or your loved one has been injured on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to compensation. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, our Miami premises liability attorneys can examine the facts of your case and help you determine your rights and options.

In a recent Florida case, the appellate court discussed the applicability of a recreational use statute to a skating injury. The facts of the case are as follows. The plaintiff was rollerblading on a city street when he tripped over a pothole and sustained serious injuries. The plaintiff went on to file a premises liability claim against the city, claiming that the City was negligent in failing to repair or warn against the pothole that caused his injuries.

Florida Statute, Section 316.0085, also known as the Recreational Statute, is intended to promote skateboarding and inline skating along with other recreational activities. The statute expressly states that if a government entity sets aside an area for these types of activities, that government entity is not liable for any resulting injuries in the area in the absence of a failure to warn about a hazardous condition of which someone does not and could not reasonably be expected to have notice. Put simply, the statute says that the government is not liable for injuries that occur at skate parks and areas where skateboarding is allowed.

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apartmentAirbnb has become a popular option for travelers in Florida, the United States, and even the world. Cheaper accommodations and increased privacy are just some of the reasons people choose Airbnb over traditional hotels. While most people stay at these properties without incident, the reality is that accidents do happen. If you have been injured at an Airbnb property, you need to reach out to a seasoned Miami premises liability attorney who can protect your rights. At the Law Offices of Robert Dixon, we will look into the facts of your case and come up with a legal strategy accordingly.

Airbnb is an online community marketplace that connects people looking to rent their homes with individuals looking for accommodations. Since Airbnb’s founding in 2008, 140 million guests have stayed at these properties. In cities like Paris, San Francisco, and Seattle, the size of the host-and-guest community in 2016 approached or exceeded 20 percent of the population. In 2016, the company reported more than 750,000 guests in Florida.

As with any other type of property, people can get injured at these short-term rentals. The types of injuries that can occur include:

  • Slip, trip, and fall accidents;
  • Electrical fires and burns;
  • Poor lighting causing accidents;
  • Broken furniture or cabinets injuring guests;
  • Broken stairs or steps causing falls or traumatic injuries; and
  • Broken tiles or pavers leading to injuries.

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poolPool owners and operators in Florida have an obligation to maintain their pools to make sure that individuals who use the pool are not injured. Part of this obligation includes ensuring that pool chemicals are in check and the pool is sanitary at all times. If you or someone close to you has been injured in a pool chemical accident, it is important to reach out to a skilled Miami injury attorney who can assess the merits of your case.

The CDC has warned homeowners with swimming pools about the potential dangers caused by the improper use of pool chemicals. These dangers include poisoning as well as severe chemical burns from improperly used or mixed chemicals. The CDC found that injuries from pool chemicals led to nearly 5,000 preventable emergency room visits in 2012. Nearly half of these preventable injuries affected children and teenagers, and more than a third took place at home. Pool chemical injuries were the most common during the summer swim season, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, and almost half of these occurred on weekends.

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