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Columbia, MO Commercial Property Premises Liability Lawyer

If you or a loved one were injured on commercial property due to unsafe conditions, a Columbia, MO commercial property premises liability lawyer could help you recover compensation. While commercial property owners have a responsibility to prevent hazardous conditions on their premises, the question of negligence will depend on several factors, such as the type of visitor that was injured. Reach out to our premises liability attorneys to discuss your case.

Hazardous Conditions Can Lead to Negligence Claims

For injury negligence claims, a person must initially prove to the court that the defendant owed them a duty of care. Property owners are generally required to maintain premises in a reasonably safe condition.

The standard of care that a property owes to maintain safe conditions will depend on the type of visitor that was injured on the premises. The owner owes the highest standard of care to invited guests, such as shoppers. This means the owner is responsible for actively monitoring for hazardous conditions, making repairs as soon as reasonably possible, and providing adequate warnings to visitors about potential harm.

In contrast, a property owner generally owes no duty of care to trespassers under Missouri Revised Statutes § 537.351. However, the statute provides certain exceptions to this policy of no liability in certain scenarios. For example, if a trespassing child is injured by an artificial condition, an owner could be found negligent. A Columbia attorney could provide guidance about how the type of visitor that was injured on the commercial property premises could impact a liability claim.

Did an Owner Breach Their Duty of Care?

If the property owner owed a duty of care, the court will ask if they breached that duty. For commercial premises liability, a lawyer in Columbia could help gather evidence to prove the owner was aware of a hazard and took no actions to provide warnings or fix the issue.

An injured person must also show that their injuries actually resulted from the breach. The court must determine if the injury would not have occurred absent the breach.

Lastly, the injured person must have suffered actual damages as a result of the breach. Damages can include measurable financial losses, such as hospital bills or lost salary, or nonfinancial losses, like emotional distress, pain and suffering, and a lost ability to enjoy life.

The Injured Person’s Negligence Could Limit Monetary Recovery

A Columbia attorney can also provide guidance about other relevant state laws that can impact negligence claims for commercial property premises liability. If the person’s own negligent actions also contributed to the injury, the court could limit monetary recovery pursuant to the state’s rule on pure comparative negligence, MO. Ann. Stat. § 537.765.

When a person engages in negligent behavior that contributes to an accident on the premises, the court will determine the percentage of fault for each party. The court will reduce the amount of damages according to the injured person’s percentage of fault. If the person was 50 percent responsible for the incident, the court will reduce their damages recovery by 50 percent.

Additionally, a person has a limited time window to file claims under the state’s statute of limitations. For injury claims from premises liability, Mo. Ann. Stat. § 516.120 mandates that the person must file their complaint within five years from the date of the injury.

When the premises are government property, a person’s recovery is also limited under MO. Rev. Stat. § 537.610. Maximum damages for premises liability claims is $30,000 per person and $2 million total for all claims from a single incident.

Call a Columbia Attorney to Consult About a Commercial Property Premises Liability Lawsuit

You should contact a Columbia commercial property premises liability lawyer as soon as possible for a consultation if you were injured due to hazardous conditions at a business. When a property owner fails to conduct routine maintenance or receives warnings about a hazardous condition, this information could help bolster your claim. A.W. Smith Law is ready to help you secure the compensation you deserve.