Under Ohio law, businesses and property owners have a responsibility to take reasonable measures to ensure the safety of their guests. When that does not happen—if a person is assaulted at a bar or a delivery driver is robbed in an apartment complex parking lot—the victims may be able to seek compensation for their injuries from the business owner.
However, this is not cut and dry. The law does not expect business owners to foresee every crime that happens, but when the property owner knew the risks of not having enough security, and you were injured, as a result, you deserve justice. To win in court, you must show that the business or property owner knew about or should have been able to foresee the coming danger and failed to take action.
If you have suffered an injury or been the victim of a crime as a result of a business or property owner’s failure to provide adequate security, a Cleveland negligent security lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC can help you evaluate your legal options. Our attorneys work on contingency, which means you will not pay us anything unless and until we recover compensation on your behalf.
At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, we proudly stand up for those who have been hurt by others’ negligence. Call our offices today at (800) 896-1221.
When Business Owners Are Responsible
Negligent security cases fall under premises liability law, which assumes that property owners owe those who are on their premises legally a duty of care to keep them reasonably safe from harm.
In many cases, a business or property owner is not liable for the criminal acts of a third party on their premises. However, when a property owner or business invited you to come to their premises, and they knew the lacked adequate security, and you were injured, as a result, they are most likely liable for your losses.
To determine foreseeability, Ohio courts employ one of two tests. They are:
- Prior Similar Acts Test: This is when the defendant knew of multiple similar recent crimes. For example, if a grocery store’s parking lot had been the site of several carjackings within the last year, a plaintiff could argue that the store and property owners should have taken steps to avert more carjackings.
- Totality of the Circumstances Test: If the area around that grocery store was a known haven for crime and this type of criminal activity was commonplace, that, too, could have informed the store’s decision-making.
In either of these circumstances, the argument stands that the property owner should have increased their security measures in an effort to protect their customers from becoming injured in an assault on or near the premises. This might have included hiring a security guard, training the security guards better, installing an alarm system, or keeping the area well-lit.
For a free legal consultation with a negligent security lawyer serving Cleveland, call (800) 896-1221
If a business or property owner knows or should know that a third party poses a risk to people on their premises but fails to act on that knowledge, that is a form of negligence. In legal terms, negligence simply means that a person’s failure to meet their responsibilities caused your injury. The Ohio Supreme Court has established three elements for a negligence claim.
- Duty of care: The defendant had a responsibility to exercise reasonable care in a situation that could cause harm.
- Breach of duty: The defendant failed in that responsibility.
- Cause of harm: The defendant’s failure led to the victims’ injuries.
- Losses: The victim’s injuries led to financial, emotional, and physical losses.
To make this specific to negligent security: You must show that the business or property owner had a duty to keep the property safe from a foreseeable danger, that the business or property owner failed to do so, and that failure led to you being injured. It is also crucial that you document your losses, so as soon as possible if you have not done so already, seek medical attention.
Cleveland Negligent Security Lawyer Near Me (800) 896-1221
When assessing responsibility for an injury, Ohio uses a “comparative negligence” standard. As the Ohio Department of Insurance explains, this standard “allows a person to recover damages as reduced by the person’s own percentage of negligence.”
So, if you were found to have some degree of fault in the negligent security incident, for example, you knew about the risk of crime in the area as well, you are assigned a percentage of negligence. In this case, possibly 10%. If you suffered $10,000 in damages from the incident, you would only be entitled to recover $9,000.
According to the Ohio Retail Compendium of Law, “Regardless of the duties imposed on property owners, a person on the premises of another must still act in a reasonable manner. A property owner will not be liable for the harm caused to an invitee due to his or her own negligent acts.”
How We Can Help
Those who have become victims of crime because of others’ negligence deserve justice—and they may be able to collect compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, psychological counseling, pain and suffering, mental anguish, physical disability, and other damages.
At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, we never shy away from tough cases. We will collect evidence, interview witnesses, and make sure you do not have to go through this on your own. Our team and our Cleveland negligent security lawyer will fight to protect your rights and hold accountable those who have failed you.
To schedule your free consultation, call our offices today at (800) 896-1221.