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Premises liability is a source of many personal injury claims

Premises liability cases are a significant source of injury claims in West Virginia and other states. The liability of an owner of real property to one who is injured on the property is generally based on negligence principles. However, to obtain a personal injury recovery in such a claim, the injured person must show that the owner knew or reasonably should have known of the dangerous condition that caused the injury.

It is generally held that if the property owner did not have enough time to repair, eliminate or warn against the danger, there is no liability. A premises liability claim was filed recently in by a Wheeling woman against a medical center for not maintaining safe flooring. She alleges that she tripped and fell on defective flooring while entering the center's building.

She claims severe and permanent physical and psychological damages, including trauma to her surgically repaired knee. She claims damages for medical expenses, loss of earning capacity and lost earnings of not less than $359,500.93. She also claims compensation for pre-and post-judgment interest, attorney's fees and court costs.

The complaint alleges that the woman was attempting to enter the front entrance of the center when she tripped and fell on the defective flooring. In such cases, a claim is often based on the allegation that a floor board was sticking up or uneven in some way, thus causing the victim to catch a foot on the uneven elevation, leading to the fall. The plaintiff, however, must prove that the condition was there for a long enough time that the owner would have sufficient time to know of it and to repair or warn against it. The law of West Virginia for personal injury claims in premises liability cases follows the same general principles implemented in other states.

Source: wvrecord.com, "Visitor blames medical center for injuries", Philip Gonzales, Jan.19, 2017

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