We bring the fight to the defense by aggressively litigating claims – and insurance companies know this.

Florida Premises Liability Lawyers

Understanding Premises Liability

Premises liability typically refers to the negligence of a property or business owner. Examples of these types of cases are slip and falls, trip and falls, negligent security, code violations resulting in injury or death from the failure to maintain property, failure to correct dangerous conditions, and failure to warn of dangerous conditions.

The idea behind premises liability is that the owner of a property, and/or the person in control of that property, has a duty to ensure that the property is safe for others or, at a minimum, to warn others of potentially dangerous or hazardous conditions.

At Scott Marshall Injury Attorneys, Florida premises liability lawyers we can help you seek compensation after suffering serious injuries on unsafe property. We bring over 25 years of experience to each case and client.

What The Law Says About Slip-And-Fall Accidents

The Florida statute on slip-and-fall accidents in a business establishment lays out the evidence needed to establish business liability.

Essentially, the plaintiff (injured party) must show that the business knew or should have known that there was a foreign substance on the floor and acted to clean it up, warn others or both. The store may claim ignorance of the substance, but if it had been there a sufficiently long time or occurred on a regular basis, ignorance would not be an effective defense.

Other Types Of Premises Liability Accidents

In addition to slip-and-fall accidents, there are several other common types of premises liability accidents. Our firm has helped victims of other premises liability incidents including:

  • Falls from heights
  • Uneven flooring
  • Insufficient lighting
  • Uneven or broken sidewalks
  • Fallen objects or debris
  • Broken (or no) handrails on stairwells
  • Escalator/Elevator accidents
  • Inoperable doors/windows
  • Obstructions
  • Fires
  • Electrocution
  • Animal attacks
  • Exposure to toxic fumes
  • Drowning

Common Locations Where Premises Liability Accidents Occur

Premises liability accidents can, unfortunately, happen almost anywhere. Some of the most common sites include:

  • Shopping centers
  • Stadiums and arenas
  • Public sidewalks/trails
  • Airports
  • Bus and train stations
  • Schools
  • College campuses
  • Government facilities
  • Warehouses
  • Factories
  • Golf courses
  • Fairgrounds
  • Amusement parks
  • Swimming pools
  • Boardwalks
  • Piers
  • Junkyards
  • Hotels
  • Private homes
  • Apartment complexes
  • Retirement communities

Our Past Cases

These cases usually involve a person slipping on something that has leaked or been spilled onto the floor. The following are examples of cases our property liability attorneys have handled involving slip and falls:

A cleaning company in a bank spills soap (a clear liquid) on the floor at night. The next day, our client comes to work and slips on the soap, falling and injuring herself severely. The cleaning company was liable for her damages (client also had a workers’ compensation claim as a result).

A grocery store employee leaves a cart with frozen food on it out too long. The food begins to defrost and leaks water on the floor. Our client slips and falls on the water, injuring herself severely. The grocery store was liable for her damages.

It is important to immediately take as many pictures as you can in order to preserve the evidence of the dangerous condition as much as possible. When you are injured, this can be difficult to do. Ask someone to help you and take pictures for you.

Tripping Hazards And Trip-And-Fall Accidents

While “trip and falls” can involve a transitory substance, as in a slip and fall, they often involve uneven surfaces, or hidden fixtures, that can catch your foot as you are walking. Examples are cracks in floor or pavement, uneven stairs, steps that are of inconsistent heights, and fixtures that are not readily visible due to poor lighting or other obstructions. These claims usually require immediate preservation of evidence (pictures, often with a tape measure to show the degree of the flaw).

Many times, failing to act quickly results in the defendant repairing the condition before an investigation can be made. This ends up being the subject of much litigation and dispute, which is why it is important to take as many pictures as you can and hire a premises liability law firm who may send an investigator out to take professional pictures.

Code Violations Leading To Injury

Sometimes, premises liability cases can involve a violation of a city or county building code. Here are some examples of premises liability cases involving code violations we have handled in the past:

A business uses indoor tile under an awning at the entrance to their store, in violation of the Pinellas County Code. Rain causes the indoor tile to become abnormally slippery. The plaintiff slips and falls on the tile that was wet from the rain, severely injuring his back. The tile should have been skid-resistant. The business owner is liable for the damages.

A power company runs a “service drop” (power line from pole to building) too close to another structure. Our client is standing on the nearby structure and the electricity from the service drop “jumps,” electrocuting him. He miraculously survives but has a severe permanent injury. The power company is liable for his damages.

The scenarios above are just a few of many examples of how dangerous premises can lead to property owner liability. Property owners also have a duty to take reasonable precautions to protect visitors from crimes. You can read more about that on our negligent security page.

What Compensation Can I Receive For A Premises Liability Claim?

If you can prove the required elements of your premises liability claim, you may be able to recover economic and noneconomic damages.

Economic damages are funds designed to cover the medical expenses you incurred as well as expected future medical expenses, compensation for damage to your personal property (if applicable), and an amount designed to cover your lost wages — both past and those wages you may not be able to earn in the future due to your injuries. Noneconomic damages are designed to compensate you for your pain and suffering.

Want To Know If You Have A Case? Contact Us For A Free Consultation.

Scott Marshall Injury Attorneys proudly serves clients throughout the State of Florida. To speak to one of our experienced premises liability attorneys about your injuries, call us at 727-772-5900 or send us an email.

Free consultations. Se habla español.


Q: What should I do if I’ve been injured on someone else’s property?

A: Always seek prompt medical attention after you are injured, even if you don’t think your injuries are serious. Medical providers can evaluate you and run tests to determine whether you may have sustained injuries which are not yet apparent. You should also notify the property manager or owner. For example, if you are injured in a public place such as a shopping center, notify the store manager. If there were people who witnessed your accident, document their names and contact information. If you can safely do so, take photos of the accident site. Finally, consult with property injury lawyers who can help you understand your rights and options.  

Q: Who is held liable for a premises liability case in Florida?

A: Ultimately, property owners are responsible for ensuring safe premises for tenants and visitors alike. Owners who choose to hire property managers still bear liability, although the property management company (or individual) may also share in the responsibility if someone is injured due to the manager’s negligence or failure to maintain safe conditions. In addition to property owners and property managers, other responsible parties may include business owners, government entities, or transit authorities. Your attorney will work to identify all parties with some potential liability for your injuries.

Q: How long do I have to file a premises liability claim in Florida?

A: After becoming injured, filing a claim for damages may not be the first thing on your mind. However, it is important that you don’t wait too long to pursue your right to compensation. That’s because Florida law imposes limits for filing claims. In most cases, victims have up to two years from the date of the incident in which to initiate legal action. While there are certain circumstances where an exception may be granted to extend this two-year limit, injured parties should never assume they will have extra time in which to file a claim.

Q: What needs to be proven in a premises liability case?

A: Being injured on someone else’s property is not, by itself, enough to guarantee you will be able to recover compensation from the responsible party. In Florida, injured victims who file premises liability claims must be able to show that the defendant owed a duty of care to the victim, that the duty of care was breached, and that the breach of that duty was the direct and proximate cause of the victim’s injuries. Your property liability lawyers understand these legal requirements and will work on your behalf to gather evidence to support your valid claim.