If you are a victim of violent crime, your injuries could result in significant medical bills. While you have the right to sue the perpetrator for damages, in many cases, you may never learn the identity of your attacker. However, you have other options when seeking monetary compensation for your injuries. In some cases, a Marietta negligent security lawyer could help you recover compensation from the owner of the property where the crime occurred.
When a violent crime happens, you have options. In addition to efforts by law enforcement, you could pursue damages through a civil lawsuit against a negligent property owner with the help of a well-practiced premises liability attorney.
Establishing Liability in a Negligent Security Lawsuit
In a typical injury case, a plaintiff must establish that the defendant was negligent to recover damages. To do so, they must demonstrate all four elements of negligence. Establishing liability in a negligent security case has additional requirements, however. These claims also require the person show the criminal act that occurred on the defendant’s property was foreseeable. The elements to establish liability in a negligent security lawsuit include:
- Duty of Care;
- Breach of the Duty of Care;
- Foreseeability of the crime;
- Causation; and
Duty of Care
First, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed a duty to protect them from criminal activity. The duty a property owner owes depends on a variety of factors, including whether the plaintiff was on the property lawfully. In most cases, a property owner will owe a tenant, customer, or invited guest a duty of care.
Breach of the Duty of Care
To recover damages in a negligent security case, a plaintiff also must show the defendant breached their duty to protect them from foreseeable violent crime. A breach can come in many forms, including the failure to hire security or install cameras.
A property owner is not on the hook for every criminal act that occurs on their property. To recover compensation in a negligent security lawsuit, a plaintiff must show the criminal act that resulted in their injury was foreseeable. Crimes are foreseeable when prior similar incidents or crime statistics for the surrounding area should have put the defendant on notice that crime was prevalent.
The type of crime also matters. While a mugging in a neighborhood known for violent crime might be foreseeable, an act of arson might not be.
Causation and Damages
The final two elements, causation and damages, are intertwined. A Marietta negligent security attorney must show that their client suffered monetary injuries and that those injuries are directly related to the defendant’s breach of the duty of care.
Deadline to File a Marietta Case
There is little time for delay in a Marietta negligent security claim. In an attempt to prevent lengthy delays before a plaintiff files a lawsuit, state law sets a deadline for the filing of any case. If a plaintiff files suit after the deadline expires, the court may dismiss the case with prejudice. In a negligent security case, a plaintiff has two years from the date of the crime to file suit.
Reach out to a Marietta Negligent Security Attorney
No one deserves to experience violent crime. However, when that criminal act was preventable, a victim could have a claim for damages against the owner of the premises.
If you suffered injuries following a violent crime, you have the right to seek compensation from the person that injured you. However, you might also have a strong claim for damages against the property owner that let the crime occur on their property. Call a Marietta negligent security lawyer to discuss your options.