It is normal for landlords to owe the duty of care to people they invite to their land. It is generally accepted that the amount of care owed to visitors primarily depends on the relationship between both parties. The landowner-tenant relationship presents a fascinating intersection of the law of contract and the premises liability law.
The landlord retains the legal ownership of his or her property and has the responsibility of transferring the property in a reasonably safe state to the tenant. However, before the lease between both parties, the tenant will have possession of the property exclusively. Thus, Florida courts had to devise a way to decide when liability is deemed appropriate in situations where an injury occurs in properties still under the ownership of the landlord.
In Florida state, it is only in a limited number of situations that a landowner can be held accountable for any injury that occurs on the property. The first case is; when the property wasn’t transferred to a tenant in safe condition (this can include ensuring that the property is up to every housing, and health codes under state law).
The second basis for landlord accountability: is when the landowner fails to repair a defect in the home that he or she knew about. For the tenant to succeed in this theory of liability, they must provide the landlord with a notice that explicitly states the dangerous condition in need of repairs. An owner can also be held liable to non-tenants should the tenant’s dog attack a visitor in the property.
Court Dismisses Premises Liability Claims Against Georgia Landlord
Back in April, an appeal court in Georgia issued its opinion in the premises liability lawsuit initiated by several guests and tenants who suffered injuries on a landlord’s property. The tenants and guests were having a barbecue on a rear deck in the home when it collapsed leading to the injuries of several residents and their guests. The court rejected these claims against the landlord by applying a similar law that is in effect in Florida.
The court argued that the defense went for the services of an independent contractor to construct the deck. Thus he couldn’t have been responsible for its construction, despite the fact that it was faulty in the long run. The court observed that the landlord didn’t put a notice that the deck was in need of repair.
Have You Suffered Injury in a Rented Building?
If you have recently been involved in an accident in the home, you rented, or as a visitor in someone’s house, you will likely be entitled to monetary compensation. You will need a skilled personal injury attorney in Florida moving forward. The personal injury attorney in Florida will have extensive experience in handling a broad range of premises liability cases.