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    Washington Premises Liability

    When a landowner fails to maintain his or her property in a safe condition, the landlord is subject to liability for any injures resulting from that unsafe condition sustained by persons who are lawfully on the property. This is what we refer to as "premises liability." Premises liability is a broad category which includes a wide variety of cases including slips and falls on wet floors, snowy and sidewalks, and even injuries committed by criminal acts as a result of inadequate security.

    Washington Injury lawyer John I. McMahon, Jr. has obtained large verdicts and settlements for clients injured as a result of a property owners' negligence in maintaining the property in a safe condition.

    Slip and Fall

    Under Washington State common law, a landowner/occupier is generally legally responsible for injuries to "public invitees" and "business invitees" which are caused by a condition on that property, if the landowner:

    1. knows of the condition or fails to exercise reasonable care to discover the dangerous condition, and should realize that it (the condition) involves an unreasonable risk of harm to invitees;
    2. should expect that the invitee will not discover or realize the danger; and
    3. fails to exercise ordinary care to protect the invitee(s) from the danger.

    A "public invitee" is a person who enters a possessor’s property in response to an implied or express invitation for a purpose for which the land is held open to the public. A "business invitee" is one who is invited on the land for a purpose connected with the businesse dealings of the owner/occupier of the land.

    Based on these principles, the operator of a business owes a duty of reasonable care for the safety of members of the public who are invited as customers of the business. This duty includes a duty to inspect for, and to warn customers of, dangerous conditions.