Whether you’re at a grocery store, an amusement park, in a parking lot, or at someone else’s residence, the property owner is expected to maintain their property in a reasonably safe manner in order to prevent injuries to guests and visitors. Premises liability laws exist to hold property owners accountable for damages if a visitor is injured on the property.
However, if you were hurt on someone’s property but worry you caused the accident, please do not give up all hope. Because of a comparative negligence rule that governs Mississippi premises liability cases, you may still be entitled to compensation for your losses.
The Impact of Comparative Negligence
When it comes to injury claims, Mississippi follows a comparative negligence rule. This means that, in cases where the injured party is partially responsible for the injury, the total award amount will be reduced by the percentage of fault the person had in the accident.
For instance, let’s say that an injury victim is awarded $50,000 in damages but they were found to be 20% at fault for the accident. Their award amount would then be reduced by 20%, or $10,000 in this case, and they would receive $40,000. So, you can still file a premises liability claim even if you believe that you were partially at fault for an accident on someone else’s property.
Liability Is Not Always What It Seems
Keep in mind that, as a visitor, you also have a duty of care to exercise. You must exercise “ordinary care” to ensure your own safety and prevent accidents and injuries. However, liability is not what it always seems to be on the surface. You may believe that you caused your accident, yet another factor may have contributed or completely caused it that was beyond your control.
The property owner or insurance company that you file with may try to claim that your own negligence or actions caused your injuries. However, you should not let this deter you from pursuing your damages and filing a claim.
The best way to limit your own liability in a premises liability claim is to hire a skilled attorney who can review your claim, compile all the evidence needed, and work hard to demonstrate what happened and show the property owner’s negligence. Even if you did not exercise complete care, you may still be able to file a claim and pursue damages for your losses if the property owner failed to take the precautions they should have.
Contact Chatham Gilder Howell Pittman at (662) 222-0597 to get started on your premises liability case.