When citizens visit a business or property, they have a reasonable expectation of safety. They don’t assume that getting their morning coffee, going grocery shopping, or visiting a friend will lead to them being harmed due to premises liability. Negligent security is occurs when that reasonable expectation of safety isn’t maintained.
In fact, property owners are legally required to ensure that their property is safe and secure for customers and visitors. This is true for maintaining the structure, keeping it free of debris, and maintaining security measures to prevent crime from affecting visitors.
Victims of robberies or assaults on someone else’s property may be able to file a negligent security claim. These assaults are life-changing and very traumatic for individuals. They can even have fatal consequences due to physical damages and mental health issues arising from the trauma.
If you have been the victim of negligent security and suffered an injury, contact a premises liability lawyer from Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath today. Our West Palm Beach and Boca Raton offices are available to assist you.
What is negligent security?
Under premises liability law, a property owner must take reasonable steps to ensure that their property is secure from crime. They must maintain the environment so that it is safe for visitors or customers who frequent the property.
If they fail to maintain these security measures, they can be sued for negligent security by individuals who are injured at their property. The property owner can be liable for all injuries that victims sustain, even if they are by the hands of a robber or assailant.
Negligent security occurs at a variety of venues. Most commonly, our clients have been injured at stores or shopping centers that have poor security features. We have also represented individuals who were injured due to parking lots with inadequate security features, at workplaces, schools, hospitals, concerts, or sporting events.
Examples of Negligent Security
Negligent security involves a victim who has been injured mentally or physically due to an owner’s failure to take appropriate steps to safeguard their property. Negligent security can lead to serious injuries such as assaults, shootings, and robberies.
These examples of negligent security are some common ways that property owners fail to take security measures.
Darkness protects criminals. It gives them anonymity and allows them to sneak up on people.
When property owners do not ensure that there is proper lighting in areas like underground parking garages or they do not change broken bulbs in back aisles of a store, they are opening up their customers to attacks.
Lack of Security Systems
Property owners are responsible for installing reasonable security systems around their property. This includes alarms, locks, and security cameras.
Broken Security Systems
If a security feature on a property breaks, it is the property owner’s responsibility to repair or replace it as soon as possible. They could be liable if a crime occurs while a security camera is broken or an alarm isn’t working.
Untrained Security Guards
Without the proper training, security guards cannot maintain the premises or prevent violence.
No Security Guards
Security guards are a necessary measure at places with large crowds, such as bars, concert venues, and shopping malls. These security guards can diffuse situations and take appropriate actions in case of an emergency.
Does negligent security apply to public property?
Negligent security cases are dependent on owner negligence, regardless of the property’s designation.
In this case, public property includes shopping malls, parking lots, public transportation, apartment complexes, government offices, airports, grocery stores, and more. These areas are heavily trafficked by citizens who expect to safely go about their day.
If a customer is harmed while on public property, it can be complicated to file a negligent security claim. First, it is challenging to determine who should be held accountable, especially if the site was government-run. Second, there are different time windows to file depending on who the victim is suing. Third, it requires extensive research to take on large legal teams hired by corporations and municipalities.
If you have been injured on public property due to negligent security features, call our premises liability lawyers today. Our free, no-obligation consultation will help you set up your case.
Does negligent security apply to private property?
Negligent security can occur on private property. In this case, you know exactly who to target with your lawsuit for damages: the property owner.
If you suffered injuries due to robbery, assault, or battery on the owner’s property, you should first try to determine if they had inadequate security. This could include broken or missing security cameras, unlocked doors, blocked emergency exits, or other unreasonably maintained features.
Negligent security can cause tragic injuries and fatalities. Since they often involve an armed assailant, the damage can be devastating to the victims.
Some injuries that our clients commonly report are:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Wounds from gunshots, stabbings, and more
- Sexually transmitted infections and diseases from rape
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Panic and anxiety attacks
- New phobias
Contact a Premises Liability Lawyer
Victims of violent crimes often feel lost, like there is no one out there to help them. This is especially the case if the perpetrator of the crime is not caught and cannot be held accountable for their actions. These victims may not realize that a property owner was legally culpable due to their inadequate security measures.
If you have suffered damages due to a property owner’s carelessness, you deserve justice. Call us at (561) 655-1990 today for assistance.