Premises Liability

Welcome to the Los Angeles premises liability BLAWG run by Ehline Law Firm Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC. Here is where we discuss news, views, post videos, and nest podcasts about premises liability law in LA. We hope you enjoy browsing, learning and that you ask lots of questions.

Dec 30, 2019

January is Radon Action Month

Understanding the Risks of Radon Poisoning. Although it has only been better understood over the last 30 years, many older houses have the risk of carrying carcinogenic radon. This type of poisoning often occurs in unventilated basements without proper maintenance. Radon poisoning depends on several factors, including exposure over a long period. Such poisoning causes headaches and an elevated risk of cancer. Such a risk of cancer may even cause death under certain conditions. That is why activists declared January National Radon Action Month. And this remains especially important for renters. Often homeowners solve the issue of radon upon buying a house-- some banks won't lend if they know the house has radon in it. However, in apartments, the landlord may not think to check. In other cases, the landlord simply doesn't care. In either case, this presents a potential danger for both residential and commercial renters. If you believe that your landlord has not been honest with you or has not checked the radon level in your house or apartment, you need legal advice. It is against the law and most local codes to allow for the radon levels to rise to the point that is dangerous to humans. Furthermore, doing so knowingly also opens up a landlord to civil cases for negligence. All of this is, of course, secondary to your health. Your Legal Rights Dealing with Radon. Furthermore, if you or a loved one fears the effects of radon, contact a skilled attorney immediately. In southern California, the best premises liability attorneys help hundreds of renters and residents get their sense of autonomy back. 

Feb 1, 2019

Construction Accident Liability Claims

The construction industry consists of building contractors, subcontractors, tradespeople, and laborers. The sites where construction takes place involves building equipment. Sometimes the machine has a problem with it that makes it dangerous. So it often puts tradespeople and laborers at risk of job-related injuries. But when a worker gets injured at a construction site, the liability may rest with many parties. Examples include the employer, contractor, or subcontractor. But depending on the type of incident, there may be a third party liable for the damages like the people who sold the equipment. So this liability exists because, in some cases, the computer or tools used are inferior. Therefore, they have a product defects issue. And in this case, liability may lie with the manufacturer of the machine. Construction-related mishap Statistics are Sobering. Stats are sobering. Construction-related accidents can occur on both large and small job sites. For instance, during 2014, the building participation rate remained 8.2%, according to the U.S. Department of Labor statistical data. In 2012 the turnout was a small percentage higher, and during that time, approximately 19.3% of workplace fatalities occurred within the construction industry. These deaths are: Electrocution: Electrocution deaths totaled 8.1% or 66 individual construction workers' fatal injuries. I was struck by Object: Deaths caused by falling objects equated to 79 fatalities or 9.8%. Falls: Falls contributed to the highest number of fatalities in the construction industry. There were 279 deaths or 34.6%. Trapped: Construction worker's deaths from being caught or trapped equaled 13 deaths or 1.6%. Standard Construction Mishaps. In the construction field, inevitable accidents are caused by: Improper safety at the site. Poor training. Coworker incidences through unsafe job practices. Debris at construction sites. Dangerous equipment. Defective equipment. Scaffold incidences. Workplace Safety. Just like other industries, construction sites can be dangerous, and to help protect workers, there are rules and regulations for most work areas. The Department of Labor oversees the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) of 1970. And it was enacted to ensure safety precautions are used at construction projects. Also, under this Act, the employer has specific obligations.  And accordingly, employees have individual rights. OSHA Employer Obligations. OSHA rules and regulations that employers must follow to ensure a safe work environment for workers include: Making sure the job site is free from foreseeable hazards. Educating the employees of OSHA safety and held standards that apply. Displaying the OSHA Act official poster that describes the rights and responsibilities under the act. Informing employees of the availability, existence, and location of medical and exposure records when first employed with an annual requirement to notify employees of these files. The employer must provide the documents upon request by the employee. Making certain tools and equipment are in good condition and safe for use. Written documentation should include a comprehensive hazard communication program. Also, covered items are employee training programs, material safety data, and container labeling. Ensuring employees understand the language and that safety training gets conducted. OSHA Employee Rights Under the 1970 OSHA Act employees have certain rights that protect dangerous workplaces or security hazards. These rights include: Rules and Regulations: The employer should provide the employee with the appropriate copies of the standards, rules, and regulations, along with the employee requirements for the employee to review. Request Inspections: For example, employees have a right under the act to apply to an OSHA area director. Next, they inspect the workplace if the employee believes some conditions violate the standards of the rules and regulations. The same goes for hazardous conditions. During this inspection, the employee can have an authorized employee accompany the OSHA compliance officer. Name Withheld: The employee has the right to have their name withheld from the employer when making requests to OSHA in the event they sign and file a written complaint. Retaliation: The employee is to be free from any retaliatory or discriminatory actions taken by the employer as a result of an OSHA complaint. Medical Records: The employee should have access to proper employee exposure and medical records. Testing: The employee should be provided with copies of testing done for possible hazards in the workplace. Records: The employee has the right to review records of work-related illnesses and injuries. Financial Compensation Remedies. In some cases, those injured may be employees rather than independent subcontractors. But when employees get hurt, their only financial claim may be worker's compensation. In other situations, it would go against the insurance company or employer. In conclusion, the employee will not have the option to bring a lawsuit against the company since the worker's compensation insurance is a viable option. But if the product maker was responsible, you could sue all in the chain of commerce.

Jan 14, 2019

Common Household Injuries & Avoidance 101 - Who Can I Sue?

Young man holding hand on his back and expressing negativity while leaning at the cardboard box
Pain in the back. Young man holding hand on his back and expressing negativity while leaning at the cardboard box
Pain in the back. Young man holding hand on his back and expressing negativity while leaning at the cardboard box Every year thousands of people nationwide suffer injuries in their own home in accidents that may have been preventable. The types of mishaps that can happen at home are wide-ranging. So for example, they include slips and falls, burns and even faulty gas lines explosions. Because these accidents can vary, so can the harm that's sustained. And it ranges from minor to very severe depending on the type of mishap. Mishaps that occur at home are not always the injured person's fault. In fact, many times there is someone else at fault. This is due to being a consumer of home products. Also, it is common to buy all kinds of home products. So for example, food, drinks, furniture or electrical appliances are common supplies that carry certain potential risks. In some cases, the home has had products installed and maintained by pros such as home designers. When mishaps happen at home because of another party’s negligence, the injured person can seek a financial award for the damages. It is to your benefit to speak with a reputable personal injury attorney as soon as possible when you're hurt. Common Household Mishap Conditions. There are some common types of issues that can cause accidents at home from the negligence by another party. And they include: Improperly Installed Electrical Wiring: Sometimes electrical wiring is improperly installed. So it may cause a severe electric shock and can be a fire hazard. If this is the case, often the party or electrician that installed the wiring may become held liable for negligence. Defective Appliances: Defective home appliances result in many home injuries every year. In many cases, these are electrical appliances that cause electric shock hazard, burns or fire. The most common of these appliances are for the kitchen, space heaters, battery packs, televisions, and even laptop computers. Improper Flooring Installation: Improperly installed floors can cause slip, trip, and fall mishaps. That can result in serious harm. The floor issues can include torn carpet, holes or cracks in flooring and uneven floorboards. Along with unreasonably slippery flooring. Liable parties include the installer and contractor who did the flooring. Defective Manufacture or Design of Home Furnishings:  People do not think their home furnishings can be harmful. But defective furniture, whether it happens during the design or manufacturing process, can be high risk for harm. This may be furniture that breaks or has become unstable. And this can cause the occupant to fall when used as what its made to use it for. What are Some Other Types of Injuries that occur in the Home? Many types of injuries can occur in the home due to negligence with some being less serious than others. They include: Soft tissue injuries. Lacerations. Burns. Chemical burns. Sprains. Broken Bones. Crush injuries. Accidental amputation. Neurological injuries. Concussions. Traumatic brain injuries. Spinal cord injuries. Internal injury. As noted above, there are many ways to become harmed in your own home or the home of another. This is true even when using products as made to use. That they can still cause extremely serious harm.  And in the event a mishap does occur, speak with a products liability injury attorney who can evaluate your claim. They will determine if you have a case with the best way to pursue your claim. The Southern California, L. A. based Ehline Law Firm is composed of top-notch personal injury lawyers. And they can be reached toll-free at (888) 400-9721 to schedule a free consultation. If you are in a rush, use the handy email form on our website, and we can communicate through electronic means. These lawyers can help you locate and sue the people who harmed you! Citations: "Finally, a Super Bowl Ad That Told the Truth" - Mother Jones "Home Accidents" - New England Journal of Medicine

Jan 10, 2019

Kids Riding Escalators - Risks Versus Benefits

Riding the escalator
Mom and two children on an escalator
Injuries are often caused by things that people don't take care around. If a person doesn't realize the potential danger or how to act around a certain object or in a particular situation, they are more likely to be injured. Such everyday objects can cause bodily harm across the country, including those in common places of travel or shopping, discussed here. Shopping malls are popping up all over Los Angeles. Injury cases seem to rise the more escalators are used. Elevators are used by thousands of people every day. While these conveyors are considered quite ubiquitous, there are often many injuries from these objects every year. Mom and two children on an escalator Escalators do pose a particular risk for children. Kids are often either not familiar with such a means of conveyance. Or they can lose digits or limbs that can be stuck in one of the moving parts. These can often occur because the companies that build, install, or maintain these machines are not responsible for their operation. As such, poorly damaged, improperly maintained, or unsafe escalators have caused severe injuries of all types. Landlords, in particular, are targets for pi lawyers. Furthermore, they typically have large insurance policies for the premises, as well as assets to cover any runaway jury verdicts. Why is Maintenance So Important for Escalators? Escalators, if maintained and built correctly, often function in the manner that they are meant to. However, those that leave elevators in dangerous conditions should be held responsible for their actions. If an escalator accident has injured your child, there could be mounting medical bills, physical and emotional scarring. Furthermore, the amputation of a digit can happen. Make sure that your insurance company accurately covers the damage caused by such an accident. So this includes all of the medical expenses current and future. Also, the wild parties that led to such an incident could be challenged in and out of court. A Skilled Attorney Attacks The Case! Facing the injury of a loved one, you are likely not able to lead such an attack yourself. Secondly, the aid of a skilled attorney specialized in personal injury and escalator accidents allows you the opportunity in compensation. This is money for your bills, pain, and anguish. You're not alone, and if successful, you will also help prevent a similar accident happening to another child. Contact a skilled attorney at Ehline Law today for more information. In addition, we work on contingency. Not a penny unless we gain compensation for you. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and will come to meet you anywhere in Southern California to assist. Call us today for a free, no-pressure consultation. More: "Riding the Escalator: How Dangerous is it?" - Louisa H. Schminke, MD, Victor Jeger, MD, Dimitrios S. Evangelopoulos, MD, Ph.D., Heinz Zimmerman, MD, and Aristomenis K. Exadaktylos, MD - US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health (link.) "Escalator-related injuries among children in the United States," 1990-2002. McGeehan J1, Shields BJ, Wilkins JR 3rd, Ferketich AK, Smith GA. - US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health (link.)

Jan 9, 2019

Look Out! Children Are at Special Risk for Poolside Injuries

Swimming Pool Drowning Victims
Suffer a pool death or brain injury? Look no further.
Swimming pools dot the landscape across the country, especially in always sunny Southern California. This relaxation spot may complete a household. But it also brings a health and safety hazard that needs correcting. When taking on a structure that could cause a fall and drowning injury, you must protect the lives of your children. You also should care about visitors and others that could come into contact with your pool. 20% of Daily Drowning Deaths Are Kids? Many parents put in pools for the enjoyment of their children, especially for young children. Unfortunately, children between one and five are at the highest risk of drowning. In fact, the CDC reports that on overage ten people drown every day. 20% of these are children Among children, drowning is the second highest cause of death And this is a particular problem in the Los Angeles area, with a much higher proportion of swimming pools. Since your home may have a pool or your kids may visit a neighbor's pool, there are factors to remember. Don't Drink and Swim Suffer a pool death or brain injury? Look no further. Alcohol could not only slow your own reaction time and increase the risk of drowning, but it could also make it much harder to rescue a drowning child. If Possible, Have a Lifeguard on Duty It may be difficult to have a trained person on duty whenever swimming. But even basic courses in safety and water injuries can make a significant difference. Slides and diving boards can cause significant risks of both drowning and fall-related injuries. Avoid Unsafe Apparatuses and Keep them Maintained Any element in or around a pool that is not up to code or safety standards could cause serious injury. There are parts of a pool, including suction devices that could cause children to become trapped. Improperly placed netting or similar items could cause more problems. Properly maintaining the parts of the pool is a major factor in avoiding illness. When the pool is clean and ready for swimming, you can lower the risk of drowning and disease. Be Prepared for Injuries Having even basic first aid training can go a long way. With a first aid kit nearby you will be able to swiftly administer the needed medical treatment before more help can arrive. Make sure that you are trained for CPR and similar rescue technique. Constant Supervision is Needed Children should be watched at all times. There's no excuse for letting children run around the slippery poolside or slip and fall into the pool and have a significant risk of drowning. Improper supervision methods cause many injuries. If you or your child has been in an accident involving a swimming pool. Make sure that you have a skilled legal advocate by your side. A serious injury or death could be more than any family can bear. And there is assistance in finding medical care. And a means to pay for it. Contact Ehline Law for more information here, including speaking to our specialized pool accident and personal injury attorneys.

Jan 7, 2019

There are Many Ways a Child or Adult Can Be Hurt By Shopping Carts

Kids are at risk for amputation
Accidents happen in parking lots and inside the store.
While shopping carts may be ubiquitous at the grocery store, they are often dangerous for children and parents alike. Unfortunately, it's been a surprising fact of life that these cars cause issues for kids, with thousands of injuries each year. The Washington Post reports that the average number of injuries exceeds 24,000 each year. Below is an illustrative video of things people do with shopping carts that many of us have probably never thought about. As you can see in the above video, these accidents are not always the fault of the cart. Some of those people were being reckless. But there are ways that kids are hurt that can be particularly gruesome. Kids have little digits, and are also low, below the line of sight of other shoppers with their carts, are a few things that come to mind.  Furthermore, the levels of injuries range depending on the circumstances. Accidents happen in parking lots and inside the store. Unfortunately, these numbers are likely small because they just count the numbers of children that visit the hospital as a result of such injuries. It does not include the names of children injured that convalesce at home. The Statistics Are Not Complete? These figures are also partial, depending on age. All of these kids cited in the statistics are for children under the age of 15. So this means that even more teenagers are injured each year and are not quantified. The types of injury vary. But all of them highlight the potential hazard of the carts, especially if they are not adequately secured. Many children face head injury. According to the stats, 78.1% of the damage includes the head, especially soft tissue injuries. There are also significant numbers of concussions caused by falls out of the children's seats. There are a series of potential damages that could be resulting from these carts including: Fingers trapped by moving metal Falling or slipping out of the child's seat Issues with wheels, including running over fragile feet or hands No matter what the point, it is essential not just to let it go. Such an ailment could lead to further medical problems down the line, especially for a growing body. Make sure your child has proper medical care and attention. Contact an attorney if you need assistance in finding the proper care or a means to pay for it. Improper design or maintenance of these carts may have caused your little one preventable pain and suffering.

Jan 7, 2019

Common Areas and Elevator Accidents

Elevator in office builidng. Downtown Los Angeles.
The red carpet may lead to an elevator and an accident.
Michael Ehline focuses in on the duties of landlords surrounding elevators in "common areas."

Jan 6, 2019

How Do You Get Paid if You Slipped on Fruits & Vegetables?

Businessman foot about to slip and fall on a banana peel on white background
Businessman foot about to slip and fall on a banana peel on white background
Businessman foot about to slip and fall on a banana peel on white background It's not something we always think about, but there is a legitimate danger at supermarkets. The risk of slipping on fallen food like smashed grapes, tangerines, and pieces of lettuce. Along with celery and other types of foreign foods like Kiwis and Passionfruit. These typically involve the smaller, thin-skinned foods that explode upon hitting the ground, or after becoming stepped upon. Sometimes there is nothing a shopper can do to get compensation. Other times, the grocer, or one of its agents is legally and thus, financially responsible to "indemnify" you. Causes and Legal Options When going to the supermarket to buy food for your family, the last thing you want to worry about is suffering an injury. While not common, slip and trip injuries in grocery stores happen every day in this country. Depending on the objects around and the slipperiness of the floor, such accidents can cause soft tissue damage, broken bones, and long-term medical issues. Being able to find and pay for proper medical care in the aftermath of such an accident is paramount. Liquids and Slick Substances Such a setting is not usually top on the list considered a risk to travel to. However, there have been quite a few accidents involving liquids or objects creating slip and trip hazards at grocery stores.  Due to issues with the products themselves. Their manufacture and packaging or placement errors caused by the store's staff. These could be a problem for anyone traveling the aisles. This can especially be the case for fruit-- grapes and Kiwi fruits are a significant example of foods that fall and smash out slippery fluids and jelly-like substances. Besides, once the item creates the hazard, it is the responsibility of the grocery to make sure that it's cleaned up. So this means the landowner or manager must make reasonable inspections. After all, they know that there is a high probability that someone will slip in the fruits and vegetable sections. They must inspect the milk and juices sections as well. What If I Was Injured in Smashed Grapes, Bananas or Passion Fruit? If you have suffered injury by such a slip, trip, or fall, it is important to find the right legal and medical options immediately. Banana peels and slipping characters often get depicted in cartoons for a reason. But grapes and even passion fruits ripen fast and smash easily. If you fall in these foods, there is a chance you will be out of commission for a while. Attorneys Can Guide Your Decision Making Process in a Fruits or Vegetable Slip and Fall Case. Often the right attorney can help you find, and in some cases pay for, the correct medical treatment for your injury. Michael Ehline specializes in personal injury and trip and fall accidents. As a disabled, former Marine, he understands the pain of severe injury and how best to proceed. He's helped hundreds of clients get back on their feet-- in more ways than one. He can help pay for the cost of treatment, lost work, and long-term expenses. For more information or to set up a free consultation, please call Ehline Law's offices today. We answer any time of the day or night and wish to offer you the best, most personable service we can. Our team works on contingency and will not ask for any money unless we recover for you. We will travel anywhere in California to give our advice or feel free to come into one of our many offices. Further Reading:   Preventing Slips, Trips, and Falls in Wholesale and Retail  Slip and Fall Claims and Premises Liability -

Jan 6, 2019

Los Angeles Sidewalk Dangers Among the Worst

Poorly Updated Walkways and Getting Poorer? As a personal injury lawyer, I handle trip and fall cases all the time. I am here to tell you that I am getting more and more reports of people tripping on misleveled public sidewalks in LA County. You don't imagine things. Los Angeles' sidewalks are often that bad. Outside observers consistently rate the City of Angels' system among the worst in the country. And they keep getting worse. There's not much that can be done, say the city leaders. The municipality's taken bad grades for its management. The sidewalks are very handicapped unsafe. They are also dotted with thousands of slip, trip, and fall hazards. These include upended concrete and tree roots, and more. There's just no way around it. How Did it Get This Way? The LA Times had a piece on the sidewalk situation. In it, the paper delved into the myriad problems facing the city's system. The city pledged $1.4 billion over 30 years to fix the issues, but it seems too little too late. There are 10,000 miles of sidewalks across the metro area, and there's no firm register of all of them. For all the money the city collects and claims it puts into infrastructure, the results talk for themselves. In many areas, the city's means are not enough. Even in all of its spending, high personnel cost and poor maintenance each play a role. The city also has a severe issue for disabled and elderly residents. LA was designed as a car-oriented town. And it remains so. The LA Times estimates that there are 2,500 miles of sidewalks needing repairs. The city also had to pay out $8.3 million for settlements and complaints. For years there was no funding for sidewalks at all! Negligence and Oversight NBC reported that the city refused to pay out for settlements involving sidewalk injuries. Furthermore, the city is at fault. However, it won't pay for any of it. This refusal to pay includes some sidewalks the city knew were dangerous. Among the most common causes of such sidewalk injuries are: Tree roots and branches Lack of handicapped access Ill-repaired or designed sidewalks Cracks and outer edges Each of these is a unique issue that the city ignored over the years. Here's an opportunity for the city and residents to work together for the common good. Since it appears the city's response is lacking, there's something else we can do. We each have a role in it. The Ehline Law Firm Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC is a leading public and pedestrian law firm. We work for our clients and the general public. Furthermore, if you have any questions, please contact us. Keep reading this site for updates and more info on the LA sidewalk situation.

Jan 4, 2019

Fault in Slip and Fall Accidents

man dressed with winter clothes slipping on floor isolated on white background
Full-length portrait of a young man dressed in winter clothes slipping on floor isolated on white background
Full-length portrait of a young man dressed in winter clothes slipping on floor isolated on white background Many people are injured in slip and fall accidents across the country each year. Some take place at their house or place of residence, while others happen at properties owned or maintained by others. The Broad Range of Trip, Slip or Fall Causes and Effects. The injuries can range from small bruises to broken bones, as after a fall down a flight of stairs or a large ramp. These falls can happen for many reasons, including wet floors, uneven pavement, or improper signage. There are different reasons for falls and varying levels of personal liability and responsibility following such incidents. Do Property Owners Owe You a Duty To Keep You From Slipping? In all cases, owners or maintainers of property must keep it safe and accessible. And this is especially the case when dealing with public spaces, such as apartment buildings, parks, or places of business. When faced with an injury caused by a slip, trip, or fall, there are several important factors to look at to see if the property owner or manager is liable for the event and the resulting injuries. Beware Slippery and Misleveled Surfaces. These can include factors such as allowing a slippery surface, floor injury, or obstruction to be in place. Also, this could also be the case if the owner knew or should have known about a dangerous situation and did not take action to remedy it as a "reasonable" person would have. Many cases are decided by judges that determine that such a situation was caused by a lack of common sense and whether or not the owner or manager reasonably maintained the space. Reasonable Care and Maintenance. While there could be a different definition of reasonable care to various courts of law, they all fall under the same set of circumstances. These can include cases where the owner or manager allowed: Broken, bunched up, or ripped up sections of flooring or the ground. Wet or otherwise slippery conditions on the ground. Out of place objects in the field, resulting in trip hazards. Lack of signs or barriers to keep people out of a potentially dangerous area. A lack of maintenance on the property. Also, this includes cleaning and fixing adverse conditions. But this could include poor lighting that made it difficult to navigate the area. Lack of warning or repeated incidents of similar fashion that could have led to the incident at hand. If any of these factors sound familiar, you may be eligible to claim damages in court. However, the court will also weigh other factors, including those of your possible carelessness. Any insurance company or judge will also look at other factors. These factors include whether or not you should have been in a dangerous area. Also, they look at whether you had ample warning of the potential danger. In fact, you may have had a lack of awareness of circumstances. There may have been a distraction or dangerous activity that could have contributed to the incident. How Can An Attorney Help? Or other reasons may be present that you need to be aware of. A decent attorney will be able to tell you some of these factors that could affect your claim and what you need to do next.

Jan 4, 2019

Handling Ice Dispenser Machine Slip & Fall Injuries

Ice machines in front of a store covered in snow during a storm.
Ice machines in front of a store covered in snow during a storm.
Ice machines in front of a store covered in snow during a storm. Sadly, slip and trip injuries are some of the most common in the country today. Such accidents affect thousands every year. And they can lead to severe medical issues. Many types of these incidents happen due to liquid leaking on the ground. They are not uncommon in places such as supermarkets and apartment complexes. Ice Machines and Slips and Falls - The Catastrophe You Never Expected There are times when the injuries can be more severe. Especially when the person is not expecting such a hazard. This fact rings truer when the property owner or manager of the wet area did not correctly warn guests and visitors about such a possibility. Such can be the case when dealing with water coming out of ice machines at hotels or motels, for example. These machines are common in many places, especially in areas where slip hazards would not become publicized. Such machines often found in: Hotel lobbies Gas stations Restaurants Liquor Stores like 7-11™ Altogether, the amount of ice that any one machine can produce in a day is staggering. Slippery Surfaces and Ice Machines Don't Mix Unfortunately, some of that ice will likely fall or drop onto the floor. Quickly melting and partially evaporating ice means slippery water on the ground. Constant ice and water issues in a common area may lead to establishments not having carpeting down pat anymore. This creates a clumped area of carpet that catches on toes and shoes, grabbing one's appendages, causing a loss of balance. Or there may be no carpet at all. Liquid on slick tile or vinyl flooring with a very low coefficient of friction can result in a significant trip hazard. Malfunctioning Ice Machines Also Present Risks of Slipping and Falling Slip and fall hazards due to ice machines can also be due to malfunctions. A restaurant could have proper signage to warn customers about the possibility of falling due to ice on the floor. But for example, the machine can break down. Such a broken machine could cause a large amount of ice to fall onto the floor. Or ice may fly out of the bottom directly into a walking area. Or melted ice could spill everywhere. If this is the case, the company that made the ice machine and/or those that were responsible for maintaining it could be held accountable. Retain a Legal Whiz To Win Your Ice Machine Slip and Fall Case If you or a loved one's involved in an ice machine slip and trip accident, you may have legal options. An attorney specialized in such injuries can assist you in paying for your medical bills and pain and suffering. Ehline Law's experienced legal whizzes have won many similar cases in the past. Allowing the accident victim to rebuild their lives is what we do best. Call or email our office today for more information or to set up a free consultation. We will travel anywhere in the state to help you weigh your options, and we work on contingency-- we don't ask for any money unless we win for you. We answer the phone and email 24/7 at 888-400-9721. Contact us today! Further Reading:  Winter Slip and Fall Safety Tips Slip Trip and Fall Prevention CDC -

Jan 3, 2019

Falling at a Home and Lawsuits - Similarities Between Grocery Stores

man dressed with winter clothes slipping on floor isolated on white background
Full-length portrait of a young man dressed in winter clothes slipping on the floor.
Full-length portrait of a young man dressed in winter clothes slipping on the floor. It is often in the news that someone fell in a store and sued the business to receive millions of dollars as settlement money. We also know how so many people have tried to fake these accidents. But it is not that easy to prove such cases. Furthermore, you might be in the habit of hearing most of the slip and fall cases in stores and other business premises. You have to realize that a homeowner can face such a scenario because of a slip and fall accident. How Could a Homeowner Be Sued for a Slip and Fall? As a homeowner, you have the expectation of taking care of your building. Above everything, you have to make sure that your premises are safe for anyone coming into it. If there is anything that looks unsafe and hazardous, you have to make sure to get rid of it. You could make your inside of the house unsafe for visitors by your actions or by being inactive about some situation. Let's say; there was a rug on your floor that became folded at one corner, sticking out like a bump. If someone tripped on it and incurred injuries, you will get blamed for the accident. But the visiting or victim has to prove that you could have done something about the unsafe situation in your house. You could have gotten rid of it. Sometimes you could become sued for taking an action that leads to an accident. For example: You are soaping the floor to clean it. But you have not put up any signs to warn the visitors of the wet floor. If someone falls on this wet floor, they could easily file a case against you to receive compensation. Winning an Injury Case Means Understanding the Scope of Liability It all depends on the negligence of the homeowner. It is also possible that someone slips and falls in your house but still is not able to sue you for the accident. And even if the home's owner gets sued, he or she could survive the ordeal without having to pay anything in the settlement. Your burden as a victim is to prove the owner or manager of the property was aware of the dangerous condition that caused the accident, or was even in the process of taking care of it without roping it off, for example. And if proved to be negligent, there is a high chance the defendant will end up losing the case. So, in that case, the owners or their insurance companies may end up offering a settlement amount to the victim. What Hurdles Do Homeowners Face? When there are a significant slip and fall case, the homeowner can get into a lot of trouble and face many hurdles. If the defendant loses, their Homeowner's insurance company may have to pay the enormous settlement amount. And depending on the injuries, expenses, and agony, the victim has gone through; it can be a lot. Why is that? First of all, the highest costs of settlement money are medical expenses. When a person's injured and hospitalized, they receive medical care depending on their state of health. And their stay in the hospital, along with treatment, medication, and any long-term care could amount to a considerable total. And it does not matter whether the victim had individual insurance. If a homeowner's proved to be negligent in his/her conduct, the settlement money has to see payment. The victim can also claim reimbursement and compensation for the amount of pain. Pain and trauma a factor? Yes. If the victim has gone through severe mental trauma and physical pain, the compensation amount could rise. Doctor's reports of physical injuries and illness can help the victim a great deal in receiving an enormous settlement amount. In addition to the injuries and pain, there are other types of damages that victims incur in such accidents. Most importantly, they lose their income because they cannot go on their job for as long as they are in bed. The longer the wait, the higher the compensation amount would be. Sometimes, the victim might receive permanent damages. And that could result in a permanent loss of income. Last and the worst is when the victim dies. It is a case of wrongful death, and here the compensation's received by the beneficiaries of the dead. These could be vast sums of money. Getting The Right Homeowner's Insurance If you research online or search in the market, you will find out that homeowner's insurance is available on many different levels. Not all of them are the same, and not all of them cover you entirely. It is best to invest in paying more premiums every month than to pay a massive sum of money out of your pocket for a settlement amount that exceeds your coverage. This amount is very much possible when you don't have adequate insurance in place. When a victim sues, a personal injury lawyer fights the case with vigilance. So that way, defendants could end up with a considerable compensation amount to pay. Make sure you ask all the essential questions from your insurance carriers. Do so before starting your premiums or signing up for the insurance policy. Furthermore, be watchful of the conditions in your house when you are inviting people. Gatherings and special occasions are the most sensitive times when such accidents can take place. Getting In Touch With An Attorney And it does not matter whether you are a homeowner or a victim who suffered a slip and fall accident. The good lawyers are out there can help you find justice. But it is also possible that the homeowner might not have any fault in the whole case. Sometimes people would sue other parties only to gain financial benefits. Sometimes the victim has genuinely been hurt. But it sometimes proves later that the victim could have avoided the situation quickly by being more careful and watchful. Or perhaps the plaintiff delayed seeking medical care and worsened their situation medically? That is not the defendant's fault. And in that case, a court may reduce an award granted by a jury. When you or someone you love has been in a slip and fall accident, get in touch with a personal injury lawyer first thing. First of all, the faster you get in touch with them, the better case they can make for you. Most of all, this increases the chances of you receiving a reasonable settlement amount at the end. Further Reading: Slip and Fall. Accidents: Proving Fault  Findlaw Slip and Fall Injuries.

Nov 27, 2018

What Legal Theories Do Lawyers Use to Prove Night Club Bouncer Assault and Unsafe Building Hazards Cases?

Security Guards can be weak
Poorly trained bouncer
Poorly trained bouncer Gatherings at night clubs or bars are a way to have fun with a friend or group of friends. But a barroom brawl or assault was never on anyone's list, right? Also, patrons expect bouncers to keep order and the building to be safe. There are many legal theories lawyers use to prove a case like this. But first, you need to understand some basics, so here we go. Constructive knowledge is the term that indicates such knowledge. But an assessment of what had been happening around the business remains at issue. Failing to provide adequate security doesn't just mean hiring a guard. It also means guarding against dangerous conditions on your property. For example: Consuming alcohol diminishes your inhibitions, and this can lead to problems like tripping at a bar. Slipping and falling on liquid, a chair, or table in a high traffic area of an eatery is a typical scenario we also see. But crimes and bouncer assaults are also a risk of harm to customers. Type of harm suffered in negligence security cases includes: Head trauma Broken bones or sprains. These types of incidents happen due to a defect or failure by the property owner or management. So they fail to maintain the building securely and adequately. The other types of harm that can occur may include criminal conduct in the form of: Assault Battery Rape, and in rare cases, death. What Is The Main Function of Security Guards? Most bouncer attack lawyers will tell you that patrons of a nightclub or bar usually are not concerned with criminal dangers. After all, these establishments typically have security guards, right? The bouncer is another name for "private guard." And their job is to protect you and the club, or bar, etc. If there is a scuffle, they must peacefully try to diffuse the situation. Bouncers are usually large men with presence enough to keep patrons from misbehaving. (Read more here.) So the bouncer is typically the employee who will have contact and cooperate with the police. So the idea is that the bouncer helps police in subduing or responding to a potential crime. But the bouncer is not usually a sworn peace officer. Observe, report, and refrain from using emotions are the duties of a bouncer. And this is no easy task when dealing with patrons who may misbehave. Sometimes customers are out of line and want to test their mixed martial arts skills on the bouncer or another visitor. In other cases, the security guard can step over the edge of their intended functions. So now, rather than controlling dangerous situations, the bouncer makes it worse. If so, liability attaches. What Are Some Examples of Bouncer Assaults? News stories about violent bouncers are nothing new. Most happened in situations where bouncers assaulted patrons of nightclubs or bars. One occurred in Worcester, Massachusetts, where a security guard was arrested for armed robbery, kidnapping, along with assault and battery. In that case, a video went viral on the internet. Witnesses saw the security guard/bouncer punch the patron. Next, he robbed him in the bathroom of a strip club. The bouncer later said he believed the man was dealing drugs in the club. An incident occurred in Muhlenberg Township, Pennsylvania, in a night club saw a bouncer kick a person out of the club. This resulted in the patron hitting his head on the sidewalk. The man required emergency surgery. The charges were assault and endangerment after his arrest. Are Even Vets Not Off Limits? In Lawton Kansas, a veteran was attacked by a bouncer in a night club. The former soldier was beaten to the point that his face was fractured. He required facial reconstructive surgery after being injured by an improvised explosive device. Police suspected this bouncer of two similar assaults that occurred at the same club! In Henderson, Kentucky, a patron ended up dead after complaining about his drink. Police observed a photo that was taken the same night as the altercation, where one of the security team can be seen holding a baton. (Read More Here.) Police believed it was the same baton witnesses claim saw striking the man who had complained about his drink. The bouncer was arrested, charged with murder and released on $50,000 bail. Bouncers harming patron can be charged criminally. And the injured patron may be able to bring a lawsuit against the bouncer and the night club or bar. The bar or night club owner can be held liable for negligent infliction of emotional distress, negligent entrustment (examples include a road rage employee given a company vehicle), negligent hiring, negligent retention, and even dram shop. (depending on your jurisdiction.) In the event of death, all defendants can face a wrongful death lawsuit. What is Security Negligence? When businesses fail to provide the needed security to their customers, it's said that they showed negligence towards security measures. A business that has the public coming within its premises has to offer protection to its customers. In other words, if it is within the knowledge of the business that crimes or even a trip and fall can occur, it becomes a responsibility for business to protect its patrons. If crime causes harm to the patron or his personal property, the business will become held liable. What about when a gang-banger shoots up a club or a disco? Well, if the owner knows it's a possibility, it is a foreseeable crime. In other words, was there a history or knowledge that gang-bangers have caused trouble in the area? If so, liability attaches. From foreseeability we mean that it was in the knowledge of the business (the runners of the business) that a crime can take place. Negligent security happens when bouncers or owners and employees do not adequately perform their functions. So the result is a patron being harmed. Below are some of the most common claims against establishments. The security guard or bouncer failed to take action. The patron was not protected from being harmed. Knowledge of violence by the owner of crimes, or violent behavior of the bouncer can also be used when a bouncer attacks a patron. What is Owner Premises Liability? When a guest of a nightclub or bar is hurt, under the legal theory of premises liability, premises liability in the state of California outlines that the owner of a property must provide reasonably safe conditions. And this duty includes preventing any foreseeable harm to any visitor to the business. Negligent actions by the employees of a bar or nightclub owner in the performance of their duties can make them liable to you. But you must suffer harm. That is what gives rise to your money damages award. For example, liability could exist because security had been alerted to a slippery spill, but it was not cleaned up quickly. So now, another patron has a slip and fall incident with serious injuries. In that case, the owner could be held liable for negligent premises liability. What is the Stance of Defense Counsel? Attorneys for the defense will almost always argue they did not know about any potential problem. They will come up with a litany of excuses to avoid paying for the injuries. So victims at the bar, nightclub, or regular old corporate offices have to prove the case. We just discussed that courts would look for whether or not a duty is owed. The defense will argue that even if the task was breached, it was not foreseeable. So no liability lies even if someone was hurt from a crime. Plus, the mere fact a crime took place while you were hanging out matters not since it was not a PSI. If those basic things are not present, the jury instructions will provide the framework to the trier of fact to find zero or partial liability. “Series 1000 – Premises Liability 1000. Premises Liability—Essential Factual Elements 1001. Basic Duty of Care 1002. Extent of Control Over Premises Area 1003. Unsafe Conditions 1004. Obviously Unsafe Conditions 1005. Business Proprietor’s Liability for the Negligent/Intentional/Criminal Conduct of Others 1006. Landlord’s Duty 1007. Sidewalk Abutting Property 1008. Liability for Adjacent Altered Sidewalk—Essential Factual Elements 1009A. Liability to Employees of Independent Contractors for Unsafe Concealed Conditions 1009B. Liability to Employees of Independent Contractors for Unsafe Conditions—Retained Control 1009C. Reserved for Future Use 1009D. Liability to Employees of Independent Contractors for Unsafe Conditions—Defective Equipment 1010. Affirmative Defense—Recreation Immunity (Civ. Code, § 846) 1011. Constructive Notice Regarding Dangerous Conditions on Property 1012. Knowledge of Employee Imputed to Owner 1013–1099. Reserved for Future Use VF-1000. Premises Liability—Comparative Negligence of Others Not at Issue VF-1001. Premises Liability—Affirmative Defense—Recreation Immunity VF-1002. Premises Liability—Comparative Fault of Plaintiff at Issue VF-1003–VF-1099. Reserved for Future Use” What's The Foreseeability Of Crime Test? Whether the victim will win in a case where a third party committed a crime against you, majorly depends on proving the Foreseeability of the crime.  Most of this test comes from case law. But some courts have different thresholds and variations of this test in California. But none the less, this is the threshold you must meet. And if not, the court could dismiss your case with or without prejudice to you re-filing the case. So naturally, a real personal injury warrior will note that this is a critical element. This must become nailed down before you consider moving forward with your lawsuit. From Foreseeability, we mean that it was in the knowledge of the business (the runners of the company) that a crime can take place at or near the site. What About the Businesses' Knowledge of Prior Crimes or Accidents to Show Foreseeability? So it's implied sometimes that the business knew or should have known about a crime or other dangers on the premises. Examples of noncriminal events giving rise to landlord liability could be where could be: Falling objects. For example, a ceiling fixture breaking loose from its anchors and falling on your head. The trash in a parking area. This type of rubbish can hide or block liquid and grease, causing a slip, trip, and fall case. But how do you show the owner knew or should have known about the criminal or civil dangers to guests. Well, one way is to show they understood the ceiling was collapsing, or the trash in the garage was a fall hazard. However, most of the time, it is not that easy.  Most of the time, we lawyers use the concept of constructive or implied knowledge. Constructive knowledge is the term that indicates such understanding. It is to become assessed in these cases what had been happening around the business in the past. Any crime that took place in the past that indicated that a crime might take place is enough reason for a business to take security measures. How recently a crime had taken place in the vicinity of the business where the victim has suffered harm. This is also of importance in deciding the Foreseeability of the crime. Prior knowledge Test - Used to Prove: Falling objects Drowning in a public or private pool Slipping, tripping and falling on public or private sidewalks Various burn injuries in your workplace Negligent Maintenance of roadway crashes, etc. Foreseeability Matters? Yes, this is key in most cases. So liability could lie if the incident that harmed you was similar to ones that had taken place in the past. But they must be in the proximity of the business or premises. It could be said the owner should have foreseen similar scenarios in the future. Also discussed below is another crucial factor when proving the Foreseeability of a crime or even a slippery floor case. Prior Similar Incidents are what lawyers look for to sue. What are Prior Similar Incidents or PSI? The similarity between the incidents that took place in the past and the plaintiff case remains essential. PSI or prior similar incidents can show it was avoidable if not but for owner negligence. Similarity Of Cases And Foreseeability There is quite a debate and controversy in many court cases over PSI. Different state judges are of different opinions. Some judges believe that only natural and similar crimes could allow a business to foresee an imminent danger. Under this jurisdictional split, the company is liable if there was a very same type of crime, for example. Even if it's a high crime area, a rape of a female patron next door will not give rise to knowledge, criminals will assault a male customer at your business, for example. So if, for example, a past a robbery had taken place in the nearby store, that would not instantly prove security negligence unless there was a similar robbery at your location. But if it's not similar enough, you can lose. So to prove the Foreseeability of the crime, it had to be similar in nature. Get it so far? PSI theory accepted by all courts? No! Some courts in California contradict this theory of PSI. These judges say even if the crime is dissimilar, the fact there was a high crime at all was enough notice to necessitate security. But some courts have given decisions in the favor victims even in dissimilar cases. What is The Stance Of The Plaintiff In Security Negligence Case? From the above information, we can easily conclude that any victim who wants to prove that a business' security negligent must come up with ample evidence to show past crime or PSI. But you must show the company knew or should have known about the possibility of the crime at the minimum. The plaintiff will have to collect information about past cases.  It is always best that the plaintiff collects information about similar cases. But bear in mind some courts think any crimes in the vicinity of the business should have encouraged security measures. Security Negligence Cases In Los Angeles. Los Angeles is one of the most populous regions in the U.S. Crimes are taking place in this area every minute. Were you part of an incident, suffering harm? Also, while at the premises, was your property damaged? If so, you should contact an experienced law firm as soon as possible. Citations:   The Free Dictionary Foreseeability legal definition of Foreseeability   Foreseeability | Nolo's Free Dictionary of Law Terms and Legal Definitions How Do Dram Shop Laws Apply? Noteworthy, Dram shop laws are on the books in 42 states and the District of Columbia. These laws hold the owner of the establishment and servers responsible in some cases. And examples include a drunken patron injuring another person inside or even outside of their establishment. So, in that case, the bar or nightclub owners and servers may be held liable. And this remains true if they permit a patron to become visibly intoxicated at the establishment. But California uses the foreseeability test, not Dramshop laws. What are the Wrongful Death Dangers? When there is an incident at a nightclub or bar that kills a patron, it could be from negligence. So, you can sue in wrongful death. Of particular interest, California cases are brought by the spouse, children, grandchildren, domestic partner, other dependents. And the personal representatives of the decedent may also sue. Two things will determine if damages get awarded to the heirs. The monetary loss involves financial support for the victim. This is what the dead person would have provided had they lived. And this will include funeral and burial expenses. Non-pecuniary damages are the loss of moral support, comfort, companionship, assistance in Maintenance. And it can include other damages caused by death. What About Punitive Damages? But the one damage that heirs will not usually recover in a wrongful death lawsuit is punitive damages. What About a Survivor's Action? So if the dead person was hospitalized and had medical expenses, the decedent's estate may bring a survivor's lawsuit. This is done on behalf of the deceased victim's estate. How Do You Protect the Rights of Patrons? Above, we discussed the various types of cases, statistics, and legal theories lawyers use to prove a negligent security case. Now that you understand more about your rights, you need to make a decision. Should you consult with a lawyer? We think so. An incident resulting in harm can have life-changing consequences. Call Ehline Law Firm now to learn more at (213) 596-9642.

Oct 26, 2018

Falling Objects and Slips and Falls in Los Angeles

Different Types of Injuries

Different Types of Injuries Slipping and falling in Los Angeles and falling objects that hit and harm people are among the top two most common injuries to consumers. Here in this article, you will learn the facts and how to deal with a case like this from a legal perspective. How Do You Prove Fault in the Common Slip and Fall Accident? Slip and fall accidents are the number one most common out of the top five most common accidents in Los Angeles. In fact, nationwide, they remain a very typical mishap suffered by people on foot, young and aged alike. Of course, only reported numbers are available. Most likely, many more cases of people falling exist. For example, when someone slips and trips at a party, or stumbles upon a misleveled sidewalk, they don't always report their mishap. What we do know is California had at least 768,536 reported slip and fall cases. Wow. That's a lot. Nationwide, falls account for over 8 million hospital emergency room visits, representing the leading cause of visits (21.3%). Slips and falls account for over 1 million visits or 12% of total falls. (Source.) Leading Cause of Sick Days In fact, these events are the single most significant reason for sick days from employment. So how do these accidents arise? Typically, a person walking on foot will get his or her foot stuck on an elevated surface, such as a raised ridge on a sidewalk. But we have all heard the stories or seen the cartoons of people slipping on banana peels. The bottom line, when people are caused to lose their footing, they trip or slip and fall to the ground. But there are also other causes such as greasy or wet parking structure floors with poor lighting. If people can't see that puddle of grease or standing water from a leak, they go down hard. Often, this results in a fractured wrist, ankle, or arm. But head injuries and dislocated shoulders and hips remain ordinary trip, slip and fall injuries. Proving fault in a slip and fall case is governed by the law of negligence, as discussed above. So unless there is a significant public policy exception such as injuries inherent in sports, or recreation, a potential defendant exists. Civil Code section 1714(a) provides in part: “Everyone is responsible, not only for the result of his or her willful acts, but also for an injury occasioned to another by his or her want of ordinary care or skill in the management of his or her property or person, except so far as the latter has, willfully or by want of ordinary care, brought the injury upon himself or herself.” So unless the person who fell on the public sidewalk drank beforehand, or fell for their own fault, defendants like the city, county, or state may exist. Tree roots that cause cracks with ridges greater than 1 inch are not trivial defects, and if you can show notifications, you can sue the agency in question. Lack of ordinary care is usually the cause of unfortunate accidents like this. Equally, if you can show constructive or actual notice of a slippery substance that caused your fall at a restaurant or grocery store, you can sue the parent company. Legal Duty of Due Care So, in this case, the slip and fall lawyer needs to prove that the defendant had a legal duty of due care. They breached that legal duty. So long as the violation was the proximate or legal cause of the injury, the case can withstand summary judgment and move to trial. As noted above, failing to correct the dangerous condition triggers a duty to act. So the best thing is to get a slip and fall lawyer to examine the evidence to see if the property owner should have corrected the condition. As discussed, sidewalks remain a real challenge. But Los Angeles is responsible for fixing, blocking, warning, and diverting foot traffic when it knows of dangerous pathways. So they are in a real pickle. In fact, ABC News recently reported that: The Los Angeles City Council approved Wednesday a $1.4-billion plan to repair a backlog of damaged sidewalks.The program calls for the city to repair 11,000 miles of sidewalks over the next 30 years, at the cost of about $30 million each year. Incidentally, you can see that disability advocates helped make this possible, as seen in the above video. Were You or a Loved One Struck and Hurt by a Moving or Falling Object? Not all slip and fall cases place us at risk for death. But falling objects are the number two cause of injury in Los Angeles. Noteworthy here is that these cause severe brain injuries and wrongful death. Examples of falling objects include falling overhead luggage on a bus, train, or plane. But they can also add a rock slide on Malibu Canyon Road, or PCH near Santa Monica. Since many of the defendants above remain common carriers with a special duty to travelers, they are particularly at risk for a lawsuit. Contact a personal injury lawyer who helps with falling object cases after medical stabilization. Proving fault in a falling object case uses the same formula. Was there a duty to make sure safety standards existed to obviate the reason for the object falling? Determine the cause of the injury. Because if it was, you could sue. But get hold of a falling object injury lawyer to learn how.

Mar 26, 2018

Boy’s Death on Waterslide Highlights Theme Park Dangers

A sad case of a lad being killed on a waterslide and the circumstances legally.