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When can a premises liability claim be filed against a homeowner?

Owning a home can give a person a sense of pride and accomplishment. It is something that not everyone is able to achieve. There are a lot of worries that accompany home ownership, however. For instance, potential premises liability claims may be a concern. The truth is, homeowners in New Jersey and elsewhere can face legal claims if injuries occur on their properties.

When might a homeowner be held liable for an injury on his or her property? Premises liability laws do vary from state to state. However, there are certain aspects that are fairly similar across the board.

The first issue that will be investigated in a premises liability case is the status of the injured person. Status, in this instance, refers to whether this individual was invited to the property for personal or professional purposes or was trespassing. Homeowners, and/or those who occupy a residence, may be held accountable for injuries suffered by a guest if they fail to supply appropriate warnings of any known dangerous property conditions. This is not, generally, the case for trespassers, as these individuals are on the property without permission.

Status is just one aspect of a premises liability case. Others include the home owner's knowledge or lack of knowledge of dangerous property conditions and whether the injured person exercised reasonable care while on the property. Those in New Jersey who have been injured while on another person's property may be entitled to compensation. If appropriate, a civil claim may be filed against the property owner and/or party in possession of the property. If negligence can be established successfully in court, a monetary judgment may be awarded to the victim for any losses experienced as a result of the injury.

Source: FindLaw, "Premises Liability: Who Is Responsible?", Accessed on Sept. 18, 2015

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