In situations where a business or property owner fails to maintain their security measures, there is an opportunity for their patrons and employees to be seriously injured. A third party may take advantage of poorly secured property, such as an unlocked gate, an open window, or a dark parking lot, to injure another person. Serious injuries often come with a host of financial, physical, and emotional costs.
If you have been injured as a result of negligent security practices, you should consider taking legal action to recover the value of your damages. At Osborne & Francis, we understand the importance of maximizing your compensation to protect your family’s financial stability and give you peace of mind. Our negligent security lawyers can provide you with the guidance you need in a free consultation. You can reach out to us at (561) 678-0156 or contact our offices in Boca Raton or Orlando to schedule a free case evaluation.
What is Negligent Security?
Property owners and businesses have a legal obligation, known as a duty of care, to maintain premises free of major hazards and take steps to mitigate foreseeable risks. If a customer, employee, contractor, or other party is injured due to their failure to fulfill this duty, the property owner can potentially be found liable in a negligent security lawsuit. Common examples of negligent security issues include:
- Failure to provide adequate lighting
- Damaged or missing locks
- Damaged or missing security cameras
- Inexperienced security guards
These conditions can increase the likelihood of violent crimes occurring. For example, a lack of lighting and surveillance outside a convenience store gives a perpetrator the opportunity to assault a customer walking to their car with a much lower likelihood of being identified. Negligence security practices can increase the risk of a number of crimes, such as:
Examples of Injuries Caused by Negligent Security
In many cases, injuries resulting from negligent security are serious. Perpetrators of crimes like robberies or assaults are relying on a lack of lighting or working security cameras to conceal their actions and identities. As a result, they may be more likely to inflict greater bodily harm. As negligent security lawyers, we typically see injuries like:
How to Know if Your Injury Occurred Because of Negligent Security
The key to establishing liability and recovering compensation in a negligent security claim is that the incident was “reasonably foreseeable” by the property or business owner. To meet this standard, you will need to prove that there is a pattern of incidents related to the negligent security practices of the property owner.
For example, if multiple assaults have happened recently in the back corner of a parking lot and the property owner refuses to replace the burnt-out lights, that may constitute a reliable pattern. The incident in question does not have to be the same kind of attack as previous incidents to establish a pattern, so a history of armed robberies could potentially lay the groundwork for a negligent security claim pertaining to a sexual assault.
If there have been previous injuries associated with the condition of the property, then it stands to reason that the property owner should have been well aware of the risk presented by the lack of lighting. In failing to provide additional lighting, they have failed to fulfill their duty of care. If you were injured because of a property owner or business owner’s negligence, you should contact a personal injury attorney to find out if you have a negligent security claim.
Steps to Take if You’re Injured in Public
It’s not uncommon for survivors of violent attacks to be unaware that their injuries can be attributed to negligent security practices, at least in the initial aftermath. As negligent security attorneys, we handle this type of situation quite often. Provided that you are still within the statute of limitations to file a personal injury claim, you can still seek compensation even if it has been a while since you sustained your injuries.
Record Whatever Information You Can Remember
Make notes about any detail you can remember about the incident. This includes what time of day it was, which path you took, what the perpetrator of the attack looked like, what they said, and what they were wearing. Provide descriptions of any witnesses. If several weeks or months have passed, do your best to record what you remember, and work with your negligent security attorney to explore ways to obtain evidence to bolster your claim.
Take Pictures of the Scene if You’re Able
If you can, document the scene where you were injured. Take pictures or video of the lighting conditions, posted signage, locks, and any other relevant conditions. This can be critical evidence in a negligent security claim. For example, say that you were held at gunpoint for your wallet, but the security camera aimed at the parking lot was broken. If you have a picture of the broken camera before the property owner has a chance to try and cover it up, that can validate your version of events.
Get the Owner’s Contact and Insurance Information
If you are considering filing a negligent security claim against a property owner, you should secure their contact information and insurance information. In a personal injury lawsuit, you will likely be going up against their insurance carrier, so being able to provide your own negligent security attorney with that information as soon as possible is helpful. They will take over communications with the representatives of the property owner and their insurance company, as well as help you prep for or draft any future statements.
Seek Medical Treatment for Your Injuries
This should be your first step after being injured. A medical provider will be able to intervene before your injuries worsen and provide a reliable third-party account of your injuries. This is critical to proving that your injuries were sustained in the incident in question, and a medical record will give your negligent security attorney a better idea of what amount to negotiate for in terms of damages. Additionally, it shows that you made an attempt to mitigate your damages, which prevents the insurance company from undermining your claim by saying you let your injuries get worse on purpose to increase your settlement.
Speak to an Experienced Negligent Security Attorney
A negligent security attorney will be able to offer your several valuable sources. To begin with, they will be able to tell you whether or not your claim has merit. They will also be able to help collect evidence to support your claim and establish a pattern of negligence. Negligent security claims are often complicated for a number of reasons, and the expertise of a seasoned negligent security lawyer can be an invaluable asset.
Can I Recover Damages from My Injury?
The purpose of a personal injury claim is to allow an injured party an opportunity to recover compensation that reimburses them for the losses they have sustained. Plaintiffs can claim both special and general damages. Special damages are typically used to refer to straightforward monetary losses, such as the price of receiving an MRI after an assault. General damages acknowledge that not all losses are readily quantified and offer financial relief for emotional losses like a loss of quality of life. Common examples of damages include:
Why Should I Choose Osborne & Francis to Represent Me?
One of the most important parts of any negligent security claim is establishing that the negligent condition, whether that be a missing sign, broken lock, or burnt-out light, has caused a pattern of injuries and that this was a foreseeable, ongoing danger. This often requires a carefully crafted and highly persuasive argument prepared by a skilled personal injury attorney.
The negligent security lawyers of Osborne & Francis are up to the task. For nearly a decade, our team has relentlessly negotiated for maximum compensation for our injured clients, with outstanding results. You can trust our team to hold the negligent party accountable for your injuries and work tirelessly to secure a fair settlement for your damages.
Contact Osborne & Francis ASAP to Have Your Case Evaluated
At Osborne & Francis, it is a point of pride for us to successfully settle complex claims with consistency. Our team won’t hesitate to leverage our resources and skills to ensure that your settlement acknowledges the true extent of the damages that you sustained.
To that end, our personal injury lawyers are capable and willing to go to trial to negotiate for a settlement that meets your needs. We understand that your financial future is likely on the line, and the outcome of your settlement can have an impact on your physical, mental, and emotional health for years to come. Our team will unapologetically pursue a fair settlement on your behalf.
If you believe that your injuries were reasonably foreseeable by the property owner, you should consider speaking with a personal injury attorney about filing a negligent security claim. You can reach out to the negligent security attorneys of Osborne & Francis at (561) 678-0156 or contact our offices in Boca Raton or Orlando to schedule a free case evaluation. Our team can offer you valuable legal guidance and support as you pursue your negligent security lawsuit.