In February 2013, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio fell while crossing a street and broke his shoulder. Last October, Arpaio filed a personal injury lawsuit against the owners of a downtown Phoenix office building. His lawsuit alleges that the building’s owners, Hines GS Properties Inc., should have known about the dangerous conditions of the street and are therefore, responsible for his injuries.
Premises liability law
Premises liability law helps victims collect compensation when they suffer personal injuries due to defects or dangerous property conditions. In Joe Arpaio’s case, the sheriff tripped on an uneven sidewalk near his office during his lunch break. As a result, he fell onto his shoulder, which broke in two places. Following the incident, Sheriff Arpaio spent two days in a hospital and two weeks recovering at home.
Licensee and invitee
When a person enters a property, they are classified as a licensee, invitee, or trespasser. Licensees and invitees are asked to be on the property for a specific purpose. For example, a maintenance worker performing a task on a property is considered a licensee. Invitee refers to invited guests, such as friends, business partners, and family. A property owner is required to exercise reasonable care in making sure the premises is safe. If there is danger, the owner is required to warn guests of the defect or condition that can lead to injury.
A trespasser enters another’s property without the owner’s permission. Even though a trespasser doesn’t have legal right to be on the property, Arizona law requires property owners to warn potential trespassers of dangerous conditions that aren’t obvious. As a result, a property owner can be held responsible for a trespasser’s injuries, even though the trespasser didn’t have permission to be there.
If you would like to learn more about personal injuries and premises liability, schedule a free consultation with Hameroff Law Group. Our Tucson personal injury law team provides hands-on professional legal representation to victims of negligence in Southern Arizona. You can reach our Tucson personal injury attorneys by calling (520) 792-4700 or (888) 792-4700.