It can happen in an instant. For example, while getting up from a restaurant meal, you could slip on a slick floor and fall hard. You might drop off your child at a friend’s pool, and she could later strike her head on the diving board while unsupervised. After a slip and fall or another injury, your life or your family’s life may never be the same.
These tragic accidents are often preventable. Property owners must take steps to maintain their property so that visitors stay safe. If you or your family member sustained an injury on someone else’s property, you may deserve financial compensation for your medical care, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Our Charleston premises liability lawyers could help with your case, so contact Louthian Law Firm, P.A. today.
Why Choose the Charleston Premises Liability Lawyers at Louthian Law Firm, P.A.?
At Louthian Law Firm, P.A., we work every day to represent the rights of people like you who suffered serious losses because of someone else’s carelessness. Our father and son team has over 80 years of combined legal experience. We know how personal injuries can devastate families financially and emotionally. However, our deep understanding of the South Carolina legal system allows us to seek the best possible results for our clients.
We Work Based on Contingency Fees
We do not want to burden you with legal bills, so we never take payment upfront. Instead, our team works on contingency, which means that we only get paid if we win your case. Therefore, you have no financial risk working with Louthian Law Firm, P.A. We know that you may be struggling after a premises liability accident, and we don’t want to add to those financial burdens through legal fees.
Case Results Won by Our Charleston Premises Liability Lawyers
Our lawyers may be able to help you recover compensation for your losses after a premises liability incident. Our results demonstrate our experience helping others in situations like yours. For example, we recovered a $225,000 settlement for one victim of a premises liability accident.
While we are proud of our track record of success, our past results never guarantee future results. Each case is unique. The damages available to you depend on the specific losses you incurred and your accident’s details.
Our lawyers can listen to your side of the story, investigate your accident, and tailor a legal strategy to help you get the best possible outcome.
Client Testimonials for Our Injury Lawyers
We understand how challenging it is to stand up for your legal rights when recovering from painful injuries, coordinating multiple doctor’s appointments, and dealing with impersonal insurance companies. Louthian Law Firm, P.A. commits itself to helping injury victims—and we make client service our priority. We promise to not only fight for your compensation but offer you the respect, care, and compassion you deserve.
Here are some testimonials from our past clients:
Slip and Fall Accident at Walmart
Steve Hanayik never expected to need a personal injury lawyer until he slipped and fell at Walmart. Though he contacted multiple other personal injury law firms, no one would take his case. After his wife found Louthian Law Firm, P.A., he contacted us in the local yellow pages.
We immediately took his case and gathered his medical bills from the V.A. medical center. Once we had his bills in hand, we settled the claim in just a few weeks. We rejected the first settlement offer and successfully negotiated a larger settlement. Steve was pleased to recover more money than he expected and recommends our firm to friends.
Recovered the Maximum Amount for a Wrongful Death
Linda Hawkins lost her husband because of negligence by a county employee. She found the situation painful, as she was mourning her husband’s death, and confusing, as she did not understand her legal rights or the legal process. However, Bert Louthian walked her through the process with compassion and dignity. She appreciates that she received personalized attention and we always returned her phone calls promptly.
Louthian Law Firm, P.A. recovered the maximum amount allowed by law for a wrongful death. Although the case settled, Louthian Law Firm, P.A. continues to advise Linda and her family about their remaining rights.
Damages Available in a Charleston Premises Liability Case
Premises liability accidents can spell financial disaster for families. Many families find themselves overwhelmed with medical bills after a severe injury—even when they have health insurance. If you must take extensive time off work to recover, you may lose your steady source of income. Your mortgage or rent payments, car payments, and household bills can quickly pile up.
If the property owner’s negligence led to your accident, you may hold them responsible for your many losses. South Carolina law allows you to recover economic and non-economic damages after a premises liability accident. Our Charleston lawyers with Louthian Law Firm, P.A. could help you recover the following damages described below.
Economic Damages in a Charleston Premises Liability Case
Economic damages refer to monetary losses directly caused by your premises liability accident.
These losses include your:
- Medical expenses such as ambulance fees, emergency room visits, diagnostic imaging, surgeries, follow-up care, rehabilitation expenses, prescription medications, medical equipment, and more
- Loss of income if you must take unpaid time off work while you recover
- Loss of earning capacity if your injuries affect your long-term ability to work
- Loss of business or employment opportunities
- Loss of retirement income
- Loss of property or cost of repair or replacement if the accident damages your jewelry, watch, or other property
Non-economic Damages in a Charleston Premises Liability Case
Non-economic damages include the non-monetary losses caused by your accident. It may seem strange to price intangibles such as your pain and suffering, but our lawyers have experience doing just that. We can evaluate your case and help you determine the value of your non-economic damages.
South Carolina law describes the non-economic damages you may be able to recover:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
- Fear of illness, injury, or other losses
- Loss of society and companionship (in wrongful death cases)
Losses to Recover in Your Charleston Premises Liability Claim
You have the right to be made whole after an accident that someone else’s negligence caused. That means you can be compensated for every single loss you have suffered because of the accident.
We aren’t just talking about financial losses like your lost income and medical expenses, either. Pain and suffering, loss of companionship and love, and reduced quality of life are just a few of the non-financial damages to take into consideration when your lawyer is calculating the value of your claim.
Understanding Premises Liability Cases and How Our Attorneys Can Help
A premises liability case is a legal case where someone gets injured on someone else’s property. That property might be a business, such as a grocery store or the parking lot of a big box store, or it could be the residential property of a homeowner. Whether the property owner is responsible for any damages depends on the injured party’s role on the property and the owner’s knowledge of the hazard.
Property owners owe a duty of care to certain people visiting their property. A duty of care is a responsibility to keep people safe and avoid putting them at risk.
Therefore, valid premises liability cases must contain these four elements:
- Duty of care: The property owner had an obligation to keep the visitor safe and warn him of potential safety hazards. In South Carolina, property owners owe a duty of care to invitees and licensees but not trespassers. We discuss this distinction below.
- Breach of duty:The property owner breached the duty of care by failing to warn the visitor about the safety hazard that caused the accident. He may have known about the hazard and simply did not mention it. Alternatively, he may not have known about the hazard but should have known about it by regularly inspecting his property.
- Causation: The safety hazard caused an accident that directly led to the visitor’s injuries. The visitor would be fine if not for the accident.
- Damages: The victim must have suffered financial losses. For example, the victim might have incurred medical bills or broken expensive jewelry.
Our attorneys understand how to show that a property owner bears responsibility for your harm. We can gather photos and videos, surveillance camera footage, witness statements, medical records, reports of past violations, and other sources. Then, we can use this evidence to show that the property owner owed you a duty of care and breached that duty
Charleston Property Owners Do Not Have a Duty to Trespassers
South Carolina law distinguishes between three groups of visitors: invitees, licensees, and trespassers:
- Invitees: An invitee is someone the property owner specifically or implicitly invited onto the premises—for example, a shopper at a grocery store or a patient in a doctor’s office. The owner benefits from the presence of the invitee. Property owners owe the greatest duty of care to invitees. They should actively seek out dangers or defects to make the premises safe or warn invitees of these safety hazards.
- Licensees: A licensee is someone who has the owner’s permission to enter the premises. Here, the licensee and not the owner benefits from the licensee’s presence. A house guest is an example of a licensee. Property owners owe a duty of care to licensees, but it is less than that owed to invitees.
- Trespassers: A trespasser is someone who does not have the owner’s permission to enter the premises. According to South Carolina law, owners have no duty of care to trespassers, although they cannot willfully injure trespassers.
South Carolina law makes an exception for children or intellectually disabled adults who trespass to gain access to an artificial condition, sometimes known as an attractive nuisance.
You can hold the owner liable for injuries if:
- The owner knows or should know that children or intellectually disabled adults are likely to trespass to access the condition.
- The owner knows or should know that it poses an unreasonable risk of death or serious bodily harm.
- The burden of eliminating the danger is slight compared to its risks.
- The owner failed to exercise reasonable care to remove the danger or protect vulnerable trespassers.
- Because of their age or disability, children or intellectually disabled adults do not realize the risk.
Who’s to Blame for a Property Hazard?
In premises liability cases, the liable party is almost always the property owner. When you are legally on someone else’s property, the property owner has an obligation to ensure that the area is reasonably safe for you.
That means property owners must maintain grounds and equipment and clearly mark hazardous conditions to warn guests that the area is dangerous. When property owners fail to uphold this obligation, they can be held accountable for the injuries that result.
Some of the most common types of premises liability accidents in Charleston include the following:
- Swimming pool accidents
- Trampoline accidents
- Elevator and escalator accidents
- Negligent security
- Fire safety and code violations
- Ceiling collapses
- Slip-and-fall accidents
- Toxic exposures
Common Types of Premises Liability Cases in Charleston
Some of the most common types of premises liability cases in Charleston include:
Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents may take place indoors or outdoors. For example, information from the City of Charleston states that Charleston is prone to flooding because it is just a few feet above sea level and located next to the ocean. Flooding makes sidewalks and parking lots slick and prone to developing potholes. Therefore, if you fall in the parking lot or on a sidewalk, the owner may be liable for your injuries.
The indoors may be just as dangerous.
Some of the most common causes of slip and fall accidents indoors include:
- Rippled carpeting
- Slick or uneven flooring
- Poorly lit stairwells
- Hazards left in halls or walkways
- Wires or cords across halls or walkways
While pools can offer fun and provide respite from the Charleston heat, they are also dangerous and even deadly. Nationwide, drowning is the leading cause of unintentional accidental deaths for children ages 1 to 4 and the second leading cause of unintentional accidental deaths for children 0 to 17, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The splashing and commotion make pools a prime location for many other accidents. Slips and falls, diving injuries, and injuries caused by defective pool products happen all the time. However, proper pool maintenance and constant supervision can prevent many of these injuries.
Other Premises Liability Cases
A premises liability case may happen any time one person sustains an injury because of a property owner’s negligence. Other common causes include dog or other animal attacks and amusement park accidents. Our team can evaluate your case to see if you have a potential premises liability case.
Contact Louthian Law Firm, P.A. for a Charleston Premises Liability Lawyer
If you sustained injuries or lost a family member in an accident on someone else’s property in Charleston, contact Louthian Law Firm, P.A. today at (843) 544-7272. Our lawyers may be able to help you recover damages for pain and suffering, medical care, and other losses caused by your premises liability incident. Contact us today for a free consultation.