Does Someone Have To Know About A Dangerous Condition At A Buffalo Establishment To To File A Lawsuit?

by Friedman & Ranzenhofer, PC on November 14, 2014

in Premises Liability

In most Buffalo personal injury lawsuits where injury was caused by a dangerous condition on someone’s property – such as an icy sidewalk or broken stairs – the defendant’s knowledge of the dangerous condition prior to injury is an important element of the case.

While it is not always necessary to prove the defendant was actually aware of the dangerous condition, proof that the defendant was previously aware of the condition but did not correct it is always helpful when pursuing a personal injury claim.

For most cases involving injury on property, the injured party must establish that the defendant either knew about the dangerous condition or would have known about it if he or she had exercised reasonable diligence.

Where there is no absolute proof that the defendant actually knew about the condition, proof that the defendant should have known about it may include evidence regarding how long the problem had been present, whether the problem was a recurring one (pooling of water at a location every time it rains, for example), and whether the area was inspected with any regularity.

The major exception to the requirement that the injured party establish that a defendant knew or should have known of a dangerous condition on his or her property occurs in cases where the defendant actually created the dangerous condition.

This may happen, for example, where a defendant plows snow onto a sidewalk creating a hazard. Where the dangerous condition was directly created by the defendant, it is not necessary to prove knowledge of it.

If you have been injured on someone’s property and need legal help, we would be happy to assist you. Please call us at 716-631-9999.

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