Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Handling Personal Injury Claims in the Seattle Area and Throughout Washington Since 1995

My name is Chris Thayer and I am a personal injury attorney practicing in downtown Seattle. I handle personal injury, medical malpractice and wrongful death claims throughout the greater Seattle area, including Issaquah, Mercer Island and Kirkland.

I am here to help you.

Call for a free consultation (206) 340-2008

Defenses to a Premises Liability Lawsuit

Posted Friday, September 14, 2018 by Chris Thayer

Alternative TextUnder Washington law, property owners are responsible for maintaining their premises in a safe condition and warning visitors of hidden hazards. If you are injured while visiting someone’s home or business, the owner might be liable for your medical bills, lost wages, and other related expenses. There are certain defenses that property owners can use to avoid liability.

*Who can Bring a Premises Liability Claim?*Whether the owner is responsible depends on whether he or she owed you a duty of care. The standard of care depends on whether you are an invitee, social guest, licensee, or trespasser:

*Common Defenses Used to Defeat a Premises Liability Claim*One common defense used against premises liability plaintiffs is that the injury happened because of an open and obvious danger. For example, a staircase – with no extenuating circumstances like a spilled substance or rotten floorboard – is an obvious danger. If you trip on the stairs then you probably can not sue the property owner.

Another common defense is that the plaintiff assumed the risk. Generally, “assumption of risk” means that when someone voluntarily enters onto property with known, inherent risks, that person cannot sue for injuries unless the injuries were actually caused by negligence. For example, if you visit a campground knowing that bears sometimes wander through the campsites – and there are signs warning you about bears – then you have assumed the risks that the bears pose.

Washington is also a comparative fault state, meaning that damages are reduced by the victim’s own percentage of fault. So, even if the property owner was negligent, you are not entitled to compensation for your role in the injury.

*Contact Us Today*If you are injured at someone’s home or business, you might have a premises liability claim. Contact one of our personal injury attorneys today for a free consultation. We will craft an effective litigation strategy against any defenses that might be used against you and help recover the compensation that you deserve.

(image courtesy of Luca Bravo)