Every year, numerous people throughout California become victims of crimes due to some form of security negligence. Private, commercial, and industrial property owners are legally responsible for maintaining safe, secure premises for residents, visitors, customers, and workers. This includes maintaining appropriate security to prevent thefts, assaults, and other crimes that victimize innocent people. If you have become the victim of a crime, a California personal injury lawyer can ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive all compensation to which you are legally entitled. Contact Johnson Attorneys Group today for a free case review 1-800-208-3538.
What is Considered an Occurrence of Security Negligence?
Owners and operators of commercial, industrial, and residential properties are legally responsible for keeping people on their properties safe from harm, such as criminal assault and battery. When safety measures are inadequate, or the responsible parties fail to warn people entering their properties of dangerous conditions, they can be held liable by the California civil court for security negligence.
Some typical examples of cases in which the court has awarded compensation to victims’ personal injuries resulting from improper security include:
- Inappropriate security in university campus or dorm room
- Insufficient interior or exterior lighting
- Negligent security in sports stadium
- Negligent security in shopping mall
- Negligent security in hotel
- Insufficient parking lot surveillance
- Insufficient security
- Negligent hiring practice
- Insufficient employee supervision
- Inadequate training of security personnel
- Inadequate security at or in stairwells or elevators
- Bank or ATM kiosk security negligence
- Hospital security negligence
- Theme park security negligence
- Nursing home or assisted living security negligence
- Inadequate security systems or cameras
- Property owner or facility management consent to use excessive force
What Compensation is Available for Victims of Security Negligence?
If you are a victim of a crime in California that could have been prevented by appropriate security measures on the property where you were injured, then you may be entitled to compensation for:
- Medical Expenses — Medical bills and related costs, including emergency room treatment, hospital stays, doctor visits, MRI and other testing, dental treatment, chiropractic care, radiological assessments, professional recovery counseling and other care.
- Future Medical Expenses — Treatments that will be needed in the future, long-term medical care for more serious injuries, pain management, and other costs. Your attorney will work with your primary care doctor and medical specialist to determine the full amount of all future medical expenses, to see that you are sufficiently compensated for these expenses.
- Pain and Suffering — As a victim who has sustained an injury during a violent crime, you can be additionally compensated for your mental suffering, due to trauma, fear, depression, anxiety, or sense of grief or distress.
- Lost Wages — After you have sustained an injury resulting from negligence by another person or entity, you are entitled to be compensated for income you have lost.
- Loss of Earning Capacity — In addition to your current lost income, you may be entitled to compensation for future income loss resulting from your injury. Even if you were unemployed at the time you were injured, your personal injury attorney may obtain compensation for future income you could have earned if you had not been injured.
What Should I Do if I’ve Been Injured Due to Negligence?
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of security negligence, you need to act quickly. California law limits the time allowed for filing personal injury lawsuits resulting from security negligence. When you have been injured by violence, theft, or other crime as a result of inadequate security at a commercial or residential property, or at your workplace, you should take these actions:
- Contact an experienced California personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your rights.
- Provide your attorney with all details of your case, so that your lawyer will have all necessary information to ensure that you receive all compensation to which you are legally entitled under all California and US federal laws, including compensation from:
- Real estate property owners
- Business owners
- Security company liability insurers
- Homeowner insurance policies
- Other 3rd party liability companies
- Make sure you understand your rights as your attorney explains them. And, carefully consider your lawyer’s suggestion of the best available course of action to get you the compensation you deserve from all legally responsible parties.
- Expect a qualified personal injury attorney to communicate on your behalf with insurance companies and medical treatment providers.
- Expect your California security negligence lawyer to also investigate the crime. Your attorney will hire experts to help in the investigation, as needed to ensure that your rights are fully protected.
- Expect your attorney to aggressively negotiate to obtain the fullest amount of compensation allowed by California law for you.
IMPORTANT: Hire a personal injury attorney who will only charge you a fee if your case is either successfully settled in your favor, or is won in court.
What is Involved in a Claim of Negligence?
Claims of security negligence against a building management company, property owner, and/or individual responsible for adequately securing the premises where a crime that causes an injury occurs requires plaintiffs to prove their cases in several areas of the law.
- Proving negligence — This is an essential part of a security negligence claim. The plaintiff must prove that the defendant failed to prevent a known security issue from existing.
- Plaintiff was not trespassing — The plaintiff must show that he/she was not a trespasser on the property where the incident occurred, in order to be eligible to receive compensation for damages due to security negligence on that property.
- Foreseeability — The claimant must show that the defendant failed to pay sufficient attention to conditions that could have allowed such occurrences of crime. For example, the plaintiff should present any similar incidents that should have prompted the defendant to be sufficiently attentive to security for people on the property.
- Reasonable safety measures — The claimant must prove that the reasonable safety measures in question were necessary to prevent such a crime as the one that occurred. (Sufficient security measures for a given premises can differ from one case to another.)
What Constitutes Security Negligence?
Property owners, managers, security companies, and others may be held accountable by the civil court for injuries or property losses resulting from their carelessness or negligence of security. These are the technical areas of California state negligence law, which together define negligence.
- Duty — California Civil Code (# 1714 a) stipulates that an individual has a duty to others who may be endangered by her/his actions. For example, property owners have a duty of care to people who legally enter their properties to ensure that they do not become victims of crime on their property as a result of their carelessness or negligence of reasonable measures they should have taken to prevent the crime.
- Causation — Claimants in California security negligence cases must prove either that the defendant’s breach of duty caused the injuries and that those injuries would not have happened if the defendant had not committed the act of negligence. Or, in some cases, the plaintiff needs to show that reasonable people can be expected to perceive that the injuries incurred by the defendant’s negligence contributed significantly to the claimant’s suffering.
- Breach — The plaintiff also must show that there actually was a breach of duty by the defendant. The court will weigh the facts of what the defendant is accused of doing. As an example, if a property owner failed to have broken security locks replaced and a person entering the property was robbed. As a result, the owner may be judged to have breached her/his duty. Or, if the owner’s on-site security company failed to properly train its security staff to station themselves at appropriate locations on the property, and a resident was physically attacked. As a result, the security company (as well as other parties, depending on circumstances), may be found to have breached their duty.
How Can a California Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?
Criminal acts such as robbery, burglary, assault, battery, and others, can also become civil issues of negligence when security on premises are not in compliance with safety standards for retail shops, workplaces, recreational facilities, public parking structures, nursing homes, industrial buildings, private residences, and other properties. The criminal component complicates the civil claim in these cases.
So, the success or failure of such a security negligence case in the California court system depends on plaintiffs’ ability to satisfactorily show that security measures on defendants’ property were inappropriate at the time of the incident. An experienced California personal injury lawyer will ensure that everything that can be done in your case is done. Your attorney will:
- Gather evidence
- Interview eyewitnesses
- Review witnesses’ written reports and police reports
- Obtain needed proof that the property owner was negligent in securing the location
- Guide you through the California civil court process for personal injury claims.
KEEP IN MIND: Insurance companies have large teams of investigators. And, they employ numerous experts to protect them against paying liability claims. You need an aggressive advocate and a proven effective negotiator to represent you and guide you throughout the legal process, to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation in your California security negligence claim.
Get a Free Negligent Security Case Review from Johnson Attorneys Group Today
We are a personal injury law firm in California, with 12 locations throughout the state to serve our personal injury clients. We understand the kinds of trauma our clients have endured as crime victims. We dedicate our legal practice to recovering financial compensation for our clients from negligent parties. We take all of the time needed to make sure our clients fully understand their rights and the legal process for their cases. And, we help them through the physical recovery process, including working with their doctors and other medical care providers.
If you or a loved one has been injured or incurred property loss that could have been avoided by proper security measures, contact Johnson Attorneys Group. Ask to schedule an appointment for your free consultation. An experienced California personal injury lawyer will meet with you to explain your rights and advise you on how you can move forward with your claim. We do not charge any legal fees unless we win your case in court or settle it successfully for you.