Criminal activity can happen at any time on a property. Negligent security is a part of premises liability that holds property owners liable for any injuries or damages on their property due to a lack of adequate security. Injury due to negligent security can be wide-ranging, such as assault, battery, robbery, or rape.
A negligent security lawsuit is solely based on the duty of landowners or property owners to offer reasonable security by protecting lawful visitors from any potential crimes of third parties. Negligent security lawsuits can occur if a crime could have been avoided or at least less likely to happen by implementing appropriate security measures.
Negligent Security Settlements
Understanding negligent security is important for both residential and commercial possessors or landowners. The duties for each of these types will often vary, depending on the situation. For example, it’s not the responsibility of a college student to provide adequate security at a dormitory, but it’s the role of the college to provide the necessary security measures.
Another example is a residential tenant having a duty to protect their guests within their apartment. Still, it’s the responsibility of the apartment complex to offer adequate security while on the parking lot. Hiring a security guard is often recommended in creating a safe space for parking lots and other high-traffic areas.
Working with a negligent security lawyer can help guide you throughout each step of the process. One of the main reasons for suing the possessor or owner of the property instead of the person that committed the crime is that it’s often easier to identify the owner instead of a stranger committing a crime. A possessor or owner is also more likely to have insurance for negligent security, making it possible to recover any of the damages.
How Can the Plaintiff Prove Negligent Security?
A plaintiff that sues for negligent security will need to prove that the possessor or landowner failed to provide reasonable care in discovering prior criminal activity or failed to give an adequate warning to keep a visitor from getting injured. The plaintiff also needs to prove that they were lawfully present on the property. The defendant failed in their duty to provide reasonable protection, and the plaintiff was injured due to a third party’s criminal act.
Foreseeability also plays an essential role in negligent security settlements. Most courts will decide foreseeability based on any prior or similar crimes at the same location that the possessor or owner was aware of, such as robberies, assaults, or rape. The court can also consider how many times parking lot security guards were called to visit an area to determine foreseeability.
What is Considered Adequate Security?
Determining adequate security for a specific property will vary with each case. A few of the most common ways to provide adequate security include investing in business security systems, hiring mall security, or using parking lot, security guards. Ensuring an area has sufficient lighting and parking lot security cameras is also vital in creating a more secure environment for visitors. Taking these additional steps for improving security is well worth the effort in keeping visitors safe and avoiding negligent security settlements.
Some states also have statutes that establish an inference of no negligence for taking specific security measures. For example, the state of Florida has a presumption against any liability for third-party criminal attacks for owners of convenience stores that take specific precautions against criminal activity. A few examples of these precautions include installing business security systems and displaying a sign near the cash register that says the register contains less than $50 while also using a drop safe.
Contact a Negligent Security Lawyer
Reaching out to a negligent security lawyer is always important if a crime happened on your premises to determine if you need to improve safety, such as hiring a security guard, installing parking lot security cameras, or investing in other business security systems. A negligent security attorney can also provide guidance on how to decrease the risk of a potential crime.
Graves Thomas Rotunda Injury Law Group practices negligent security cases for clients throughout Florida. Our team of lawyers can give you guidance and the support you need to ensure you receive adequate compensation. We are also available to answer any of your questions related to negligent security settlements. Reach out to Graves Thomas Rotunda Injury Law Group today to schedule a free consultation.