When you own a home or business, it is your responsibility to provide a safe environment for those who enter your property. You must keep the area clean, safe, and free of hazards. In many cases, you may not be able to make immediate repairs or changes necessary to help increase the safety of your property. When you are in this situation, warning signs are a good way to protect those visiting you. However, they may not necessarily absolve you from liability in the event someone is injured on your property. Here is what you need to know:
Are You Liable?
If a person is hurt while on your personal or business property, there are certain standards that must be met for premises liability to apply. First, the injury had to take place where a person was invited into your property or doing business on your property. In this instance, you are responsible for his or her safety. Secondly, the injuries to the person must be due to the dangerous condition of your property. Finally, the dangerous conditions on your property must be due to your own negligence, meaning you took no action to prevent the accident or injury.
Does a Warning Sign Protect You?
When you post a warning sign to bring the dangerous conditions of your property to the attention of those visiting, you are showing an attempt to warn them and keep them safe. However, a sign is not always enough due diligence to protect you from liability. Some property conditions may be so bad and unsafe that a warning sign is not effective enough to prevent an accident.
How Can You Protect Yourself From Liability?
If you intend to use a warning sign to show there is danger on your property, the sign must be large enough for your visitors or patrons to see. It needs to be easy to read and understand to be fully effective. In addition to warning signage, you need to take additional steps, such as closing off areas with caution tape, closing your property temporarily until the necessary repairs are made, or anything else you can do to make your property safe. Still, if someone is injured due to the danger on your property, you may still face legal action despite your efforts.
If you are sued for an injury that occurred on your property due to unsafe conditions, be sure to speak to a personal injury attorney to determine if you are actually liable for the damages.