Property owners have numerous legal duties requiring them to take care of their premises and keep visitors safe.
Maintaining a reasonably safe and secure property is one of the most important of those duties.
For example, owners must ensure there are no hazards that could cause someone to trip and fall.
However, many people may not realize property owners must also keep visitors safe from criminal acts like assault or rape.
Pursuing a claim for negligent security involves complex legal issues. You need an experienced legal advocate on your side.
Our team of negligent security attorneys in Los Angeles can review your case and help you determine what steps to take next.
What Is Considered Negligent Security?
Before pursuing a claim for negligent security, it’s important to understand what that term means.
A property owner has been negligent in securing their property when the owner failed to take reasonable measures to keep people on the property safe from crime.
Necessary security measures will vary depending on the property type.
Examples of potentially negligent security include:
- Lack of security cameras or malfunctioning cameras,
- No security guards on premises,
- Doors that do not lock or have broken looks,
- Gates or fences that are damaged or do not lock,
- Blocked emergency exits,
- Untrained security guards,
- No alarm system or malfunctioning alarm system,
- Lack of lighting or inadequate lighting,
- Failure to conduct background checks on guards, and
- Lack of training for security guards.
The level of security necessary will depend on circumstances specific to the property.
For example, has there been a recent rise in crime? Or does the owner know about someone else being attacked recently? What is considered reasonable security measures will also vary.
In general, businesses and property owners might need to:
- Install security alarms,
- Add a keypad entry,
- Hire trained security guards,
- Increase security patrols,
- Add lighting, and
- Add security cameras.
When a business fails to provide adequate security, the results can be catastrophic.
Certain types of properties are more prone to security issues, so owners must take extra steps to keep their patrons and residents safe.
For example, shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, apartment complexes, and clubs should usually have extra security because these locations can attract criminals.
Facts specific to each individual property will also determine what security measures an owner should take.
For example, a shopping center in a low-crime area might be made safe by simply adding plenty of lighting. However, a mall in a high-crime neighborhood with evidence of prior attacks will need lighting, security patrols, and more.
When hiring security guards, a business must take proper precautions to employ experienced and vetted security companies.
Guards must be screened, trained, and supervised. Some security companies cut corners and hire guards who have prior criminal charges.
Hiring guards with previous charges for violent crimes, such as rape, robbery, or assault, can create security problems.
Examples of Events that Can Lead to a Negligent Security Lawsuit
Failure to implement proper security measures can lead to a rise in crime. Opportunistic criminals target properties and businesses that have weaker security measures in place.
Some events that can lead to a negligent security lawsuit include:
- ATM robberies,
- Hotel room assaults,
- Parking lot assaults or rapes,
- School campus rapes,
- Restaurant or dance club assaults and rapes,
- Gas station attacks,
- Apartment complex robberies, and
- Shopping mall parking lot attacks.
These are only a few examples of crimes that can lead to a civil lawsuit for negligent security in Los Angeles. Suppose a family member died due to injuries sustained in a negligent security incident.
In that case, some surviving family members might have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible parties.
If you or a loved one was assaulted, robbed, or raped while on another person’s property, you should immediately speak with a negligent security lawyer at Weinberg Law Offices.
How Do You Hold Property Owners and Businesses Responsible for Negligent Security?
Negligent security lawsuits fall under a broader area of the law called premises liability.
These claims often involve complicated legal issues, which is why we recommend you speak with a negligent security attorney immediately following an incident.
The sooner you retain Weinberg Law Offices to represent you, the sooner we can start building your case.
Proving liability in negligent security matters is not always straightforward. Most people assume the property owner is the only party who can be held responsible. However, other parties might also share responsibility for your injuries.
Examples of potential defendants we might name in a lawsuit include:
- Business owners,
- Property managers,
- Security firms, and
- Leasing tenants.
The duty of the defendants will vary based on your status at the time of the attack.
In other words, the specific duties a property owner owes someone who is on their property will depend on whether that person was legally allowed to be on the property or was trespassing when the crime occurred.
Available Damages in a Los Angeles Negligent Security Case
Understandably, injured victims want to know how much money they might receive.
The types of damages you can pursue will depend on your individual circumstances. Our negligent security lawyers will sit down and explain what your case is worth and why.
In general, you might receive compensation for:
- Medical expenses to date,
- Future expected medical costs,
- Lost wages to date,
- Future loss of earning capacity,
- Pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress, and
- Disfigurement and disability.
Wrongful death damages can also be recovered for negligent security through a wrongful death claim.
A wrongful death lawsuit allows surviving family members to recover for their own losses that were caused by the death of their loved one.
Statute of Limitations
It’s crucial to note you don’t have unlimited time to file a lawsuit for negligent security. Under California law, you only have two years from the incident date to file.
If you don’t file before the deadline, you will usually lose the right to pursue your claim further. The courts don’t care if you were in the middle of negotiations with the property owner or their insurance company.
Failing to file before the deadline can prevent you from getting the compensation you would otherwise be entitled to.
Contact Our Negligent Security Lawyers
If you need legal assistance pursuing a negligent security claim in Los Angeles, Weinberg Law Offices is here to help.
We understand what a stressful and uncertain time this is for you. We have years of experience, and we’ll fight tirelessly to get you the maximum compensation possible.
To learn more about how we can assist you with a negligent security lawyer, contact Weinberg Law Offices today by phone or online.
Disclaimer: This content should not be construed as legal advice.