Salem, Oregon Premises Liability Attorneys Effectively Defend Client's Rights

Knowledge and experience in service of injured clients

At the Salem, Oregon law firm of Harris, Wyatt & Amala, LLC, we represent people who have suffered spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, fractures and other catastrophic injuries due to dangerous and unsafe property conditions.

Understanding premises liability law

Property owners and managers have a legal duty to keep their property reasonably safe. This includes intermittently inspecting the property, performing regular maintenance, repairing dangers and posting adequate warnings of any remaining hazards. If a property owner knew or should have known of a dangerous condition and failed to fix the situation or provide adequate warning of its existence, victims injured because of the condition may seek recovery for their injuries in a premises liability action.

Too often, catastrophic injuries and wrongful deaths resulting from unsafe property conditions could have been avoided if property owners and managers properly maintained their buildings and land. Common types of dangerous hazards that may give rise to premises liability claims include:

  • Unsecured, falling objects from construction sites and buildings
  • Poorly maintained sidewalks or walkways
  • Malfunctioning elevators or escalators
  • Broken stairs and handrails
  • Obstructions on stairs
  • Collapsing porches or decks
  • Steeply sloped driveways
  • Exposed wiring
  • Inadequate security
  • Spills and fallen merchandise in stores

Property owners who may be held liable include private property owners, such as homeowners, employers, businesses and restaurants, as well as public property owners, such as cities, counties and the State of Oregon.

Slip-and-fall accidents and the opportunity to cure

Owners of property that are open to the public must be reasonably vigilant about removing hazards that the public itself creates. For example, if a shopper knocks over a jar of mayonnaise on aisle three and a subsequent shopper steps on a gooey mess, slips and suffers a fall, is it really the shop owner’s fault? There are several questions that must be answered before a court would hold the store liable:

  • Did the first customer report the spill?
  • Did an unreasonable time pass from when the spill was reported to when a worker came to clean it?
  • Is the store generally vigilant about cleaning spills?
  • Does the store employ enough workers to respond reasonably to maintenance emergencies?
  • Does the store keep pop-up safety cones accessible to warn of spills until they can be cleaned?
  • Was the spill so obvious that other shoppers were able to spot it and step safely around it?

Premises liability law is predicated on fairness. A business must have reasonable notice and an opportunity to cure a condition that a customer created. If the business squanders that opportunity, it can be held liable. As your attorney, we investigate all the facts and present them in the best light to advance your case.

Substantiating a premises liability claim

Gathering evidence as quickly as possible after an incident can be critical to proving a premises liability case. Often, the dangerous condition is easily fixable, and establishing how long certain hazards were present may be difficult. Also increasing the potential complexity of premises liability cases, every individual has a responsibility to be mindful of their surroundings and to keep him or herself safe. Thus, property owners will often assert that the injury victim caused his or her own accident, making dangerous premises claims some of the toughest personal injury cases to prove. Our attorneys are fully committed to investigating the circumstances surrounding an accident in order to uncover all available evidence, always working to build your strongest claim.

Seek experienced, diligent representation for your premises liability claim in Oregon

At Harris, Wyatt & Amala, LLC, we feel that premises liability cases are some of the most important to society because the threat of a lawsuit can motivate individuals and businesses to properly maintain their property, thus making our communities safer for all. If you or a loved one was injured due to a dangerous property condition, please contact our offices online or call us at 971-599-6723 for a free initial consultation.