California Premises Liability Lawyers

California's “premises liability” laws require people to keep property they own or occupy in a reasonably safe condition. This “duty of care” obligates people who own, possess or control property to exercise reasonable care to:

  • Maintain their property;
  • Inspect the property;
  • Repair potentially dangerous conditions; and/or
  • Give adequate warning of any dangerous condition(s).[1]

A property owner or occupier who is negligent in failing to do these things may be liable for injuries sustained on the property. Compensatory damages the injured party can sue for can include:

In extreme cases, the injured person might even be entitled to punitive damages in California.

To help you better understand "premises liability" laws in California, our California personal injury lawyers discuss, below:

You may also wish to see our article on California's "slip-and-fall" accident laws and lawsuits for injuries sustained in an elevator accident

worker in hard hat falling down the stairs

1. What are California's “premises liability” laws?

Premises liability arises under California’s laws on negligence.[2] California Civil Code 1714(a) provides, in relevant part:

“Everyone is responsible, not only for the result of his or her willful acts, but also for an injury occasioned to another by his or her want of ordinary care or skill in the management of his or her property or person…”

The question is whether in the management of property, the possessor of land has acted as a reasonable person under all the circumstances. Issues a jury may consider include (without limitation):

  • The likelihood of injury to a plaintiff, 
  • The probable seriousness of such injury,
  • The burden of reducing or avoiding the risk, 
  • The location of the property, and 
  • The owner's or possessor's degree of control over the risk-creating condition(s).[3]

Example: Tanya stays at a hotel for a business trip and gets bitten by bedbugs. She develops a severe skin reaction that must be treated with steroids and antibiotics. It turns out the hotel had received complaints about bedbugs from previous guests, but failed to investigate or take corrective action.

In a bedbug injury lawsuit, Tanya is likely to recover damages for her medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages and possibly punitive damages. 

2. Who can I sue if I am injured on someone else's property?

Parties that may be liable for premises liability in California can include:

  • The owner of the property,
  • The lessee, renter or temporary occupant of property,
  • The parent company of a property owner or occupant, and/or
  • The premises liability insurer -- including, if applicable, the occupant's homeowner's or renter's insurance.

In some cases, more than one party may be responsible. Our California premises liability attorneys can help you determine who is liable and which of the liable parties has the assets to satisfy a judgment.

Example: Sarah, a 6-year-old, attends a swimming party at a neighbor's house. Betty, one of the parents, is supervising the children as they swim. Sarah gets her har stuck in an uncovered pool drain that was negligently installed by the Long Beach Pool Co. Betty is away smoking a cigarette and fails to render aid. Sarah drowns. 

In this situation, the homeowner, Betty and the pool company could all be held liable in a drowning accident lawsuit

3. How can a California premises liability lawyer help?

Our lawyers include former police officers, prosecutors and investigators. We have logged thousands of courtroom hours and have tried over 100 cases, including many involving catastrophic injuries or wrongful death.

Example: Trisha is visiting her neighbor and walking out the garage. The garage door malfunctions and hits her, breaking her collarbone and shoulder. It turns out the neighbor know the device was broken, but still allowed people to enter and exit the garage, placing them in danger.

In a lawsuit for injuries caused by a defective garage door, Trisha may be able to recover damages from both the property owner and the manufacturer of the garage door. 

But whether your California premises liability case is large or small, our team will make sure it gets the attention it needs. From our support staff to our lawyers and paralegals, our team is dedicated to making a difficult time easier.

We offer free consultations so that you can discuss your case with a knowledgeable lawyer from the outset. And remember -- you pay no fees or costs unless and until your case settles or you win at trial. 

Injured on someone else's premises in California? Call us for help…

female receptionist

If you or someone you know has been injured due to premises liability in California, we invite you to contact us for a free consultation.

We have offices throughout California – including in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside, Ventura, San Diego and Orange Counties, as well as the Central Valley and Northern California.

Call us at (855) LAWFIRM to discuss your case with a lawyer near you.

We can also help you if you were injured on someone else's property in Nevada.

Legal references:

  1. California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI) 1001.
  2. Rowland v. Christian (1968) 69 Cal.2d 108; CACI 1000.
  3. Sprecher v. Adamson Companies (1981) 30 Cal.3d 358

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Shouse Law Group has multiple locations all across California, Nevada, and Colorado. Click Office Locations to find out which office is right for you.

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Call us 24/7 (855) 396-0370