Accidents can happen to people anywhere and anyhow. They can sustain injuries from slip and fall accidents. These are among the more common accidents that happen all around. They could suffer a slip and fall accident while they are walking on the road or in a bar or even in other people’s homes.
While liabilities towards injuries sustained in slip and fall accidents on public roads or public places are squarely on public authorities, what happens when people slip and fall in someone else’s property, and that too when they are intoxicated?
If injured people want to claim then they have to consider various factors before preferring a claim. Here’s a look at the circumstances under which they can bring a claim.
State where the accident took place
Each state has its own laws and they are different in some ways. The general principle is that property owners are liable for injuries sustained by guests if they are physically present on the property. Of course, there are certain conditions that need to be satisfied both on the part of property owners and the guests.
Responsibility of property owner
Property owners are expected to keep the premises in a safe condition for them to invite guests to their property. If on the other hand, property owners keep their premises in unsafe conditions far from being safe and prone to obvious dangers, then they can be held liable for injuries sustained by slip and fall accidents. This is also subject to guests satisfying reasonable conditions.
Responsibility of guests
Guests who are invited to their hosts’ premises are expected to behave responsibly. They are supposed to exhibit prudence while moving about within the premises adhering to safety norms expected of normal human beings. If they are injured by a slip and fall accident despite their best efforts and safe conduct then they may bring a claim.
Responsibility of guests when intoxicated
Guests are required to consume alcoholic beverages within reasonable limits. If in the event guests slip and fall and injure themselves when alcohol level is within permissible limits and alcohol has not impaired the faculties it could be treated as a normal injury claim on account of a slip and fall accident. However, if the alcohol level is above the state’s permissible limit then there is usually a share of the blame attributed to the guests and if damages are awarded they will be reduced to the extent of blame attributed to the guests.
Contours of the claim process
In some states, if blame can be attributed to guests’ intoxication then it is almost certain that bringing a claim on the owner or host is futile. However, in some other states compensation can be reduced to the extent of blame attributed to the guests.
Onus on guests
Self-intoxicated guests are typically barred from bringing claims.
The onus of proving the non-impairment of faculties while being intoxicated rests with the guests. Similarly, the onus of proving that sufficiently dangerous conditions prevailed on the premises that caused the slip and fall accident leading to injuries rests with the guests.
Injured guests can claim damages that could include pain and suffering, lost wages, incidental expenses, and medical costs.
Onus on property owners
Property owners are required to show that their premises are reasonably safe for guests to wander around. In the event the guests are intoxicated and want to perform natural movements such as visiting the washroom then the hosts should try to provide assistance to such intoxicated guests. The onus is on the property owners to prove the intoxication level of guests.
Property owners must remember that laws keep changing and they should be aware of the latest position in law. Further, defending a claim is strengthened by factual evidence and a slip and fall accident attorneys in Monroe would be helpful for rendering suitable advice to defend claims brought on by guests.
Jason Smith is a freelance writer and blogger and was previously (before COVID-19 outbreak) the head of content writing in a startup digital marketing agency. He’s an expert in creative content writing and on-page content optimization.