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Nashville Commercial Property Premises Liability Lawyer

Commercial property is any property that is in used to make money, even if it is non-profit. So if it is a business, if it has clients,  if it is there to make money, if it is not a residence,  then it is commercial property. Just as residential property owners can be held liable, commercial property owners can be held liable as well if they are negligent property owners.

If you have been injured on commercial property as the result of negligence, get in touch with a Nashville commercial property premises liability lawyer. A capable attorney can help you pursue the damages you deserve.

Commercial Property Liability Explained

Commercial property liability is very similar to residential property liability or just any property liability. However, liability cases tend to be more common for commercial property. These premises liability cases are common because there are more people in and out of commercial properties.

A commercial property owner has a duty to keep the real estate safe for its customers because they are inviting people to come to their business to make a profit. The people that are visiting, and the people in Nashville as a whole, expect businesses to keep the property safe.

If there is an unsafe condition on the property, whether it be liquid on the floor or holes in the parking lot, the business owner should repair it. And before it can be repaired, they need to warn people that the dangerous condition is present.

Pertinent Information About Commercial Property Liability

The key to commercial property liability is to prove that the owner of the property is responsible. A Nashville Commercial Property Premises Liability Lawyer must also prove that the property owner knew there was a danger, that they created the danger,  that they did not warn others about the danger, and this evidence must be obtained as quickly as possible.

Once an experienced attorney is retained, their office will send an exfoliation letter to the owner of the property advising them of the injury and warning them not to destroy any evidence because the attorney wants to see everything surrounding the mishap, especially if it is video evidence.

If it is established at a later time that they had video and destroyed it, that can help the injured person at trial. With cameras on cell phones now, everyone takes pictures of everything.

If a person is injured, any witnesses should take a picture or take a video of what caused them to fall immediately. If they forget to do that at the time and decide to go back the next day, everything is changed, and once it is cleaned up, the situation can never be recreated.

Requirements for Property to be Considered Safe

Common sense would dictate that if a person has property, it is their duty to inspect it on a semi-regular basis and make sure that everything is safe. A property owner should be making sure that the floors are clean and free from debris.

They should be ensuring that the parking lot is in good condition and, well lit so people can see where they are going. The property owner should also make sure that the stairs have handrails and properly maintained. It is just standard maintenance on a person’s property to make sure that it is safe.

Commercial property owners also need to secure the property, to make sure it is well lit, to deter any thieves or robbers or somebody that might attack their customers, provide a security guard or a fence, if necessary, to protect customers from the normal dangers that a person would see in any commercial establishment. Property owners need to always be vigilant to make sure that the business is a safe place for customers.

Statute of Limitations for Commercial Property Liability

For injuries sustained in a premises liability at a commercial property, it is one year from the date of the accident or injury, with a few exceptions to the statute of limitations in Tennessee.

For instance, if the injured person is a minor, their statute of limitations does not start to run until they are 18 years of age. In general, there is a one-year statute of limitations in Tennessee and, although a year may sound like a long time, it is not. Therefore, in these types of cases, it is important to move quickly.

How Liability is Assigned

A lot of times with commercial property, an injured person is going to deal with different layers of people that are responsible for that property. For instance, if a shopping mall is owned by one company and a store owned by a different company rents space from the shopping mall there might be a security company that patrols the real estate which could become involved if it is an inadequate security claim.

If someone is injured in the parking lot that was maintained by a different company, there would be another company involved. Multiple layers of defendants in these cases can take awhile to unwind and find out who is responsible.

This is another reason an injured person should retain an experienced Nashville commercial property premises liability lawyer right away to begin the investigation. Generally, property owners may be the defendant, the leasers of the property or tenant may be a defendant, maintenance companies or construction companies that are working on or maintaining the property can be a defendant.

Impact of the Size of the Corporation on a Commercial Liability Case

The size of a corporation does not make a difference under the law, and it does not make a difference in the courtroom. Whether an individual person, a business, or a giant corporation, everybody is the same in the courtroom.

From a litigation standpoint, large corporations put forth more resources and fight these cases. That is why an injured person needs an experienced attorney who has the resources and knowledge to fight back.

What Happens if the Defendant is not Found at Fault

That can be very difficult. In automobile cases for instance, if a driver hits a person and runs off and is never found, the injured person can file an uninsured/underinsured motorist claim.

An injured person does not have that luxury in a commercial property dispute. An experienced attorney can prove a joint in several liability claims that all of the defendants should be held responsible. They can work out the percentages of responsibility amongst themselves.

For instance, if an owner and a management company were sued, an experienced Nashville commercial property premises liability lawyer would ask for a judgment against them both. That means that the injured person gets a judgment and collects from either or both of them, and then the defendants can work out who is responsible for what.

An injured person hopes that if one of the defendants cannot be found, that he is not left without recourse. A person’s hope is to get an equal judgment against all of them and let the defendants work out who should pay what.

Value of a Lawyer

A Nashville commercial property premises liability lawyer can be instrumental to your case. Proving liability in commercial property places can be tough, especially if you are going against a company/commercial property with a lot of money. A lawyer can work with you to build your case and make sure you receive the damages you deserve.
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