Landlords must do more than keep the grounds beautiful and respond to maintenance requests; they must also do their part to keep their tenants safe. When a tenant is injured because a landlord failed at this goal — they could be held liable. If you were injured on the grounds of your rental community, learn more about what who might be at fault.
Injuries on Community Grounds
Tenants are expected to always exercise a duty of care in that they should never put themselves in a knowingly unsafe situation. However, there is also a responsibility on the part of the landlord to ensure that all community grounds are safe for tenant use.
Uneven pool decking, damaged pathways, and other upkeep problems all put tenants at risk, and since it is the responsibility of the landlord to maintain these areas, they are often to blame for any injuries that result. In the legal world, these situations fall under the realm of premise liability.
Do not assume that a landlord is only responsible for those incidents that happen on community grounds. A landlord can also be liable for injuries that a tenant sustains in their unit. Often, these sorts of incidents involve a scenario in which maintenance is neglected.
For example, the tenant may have put in multiple requests and complained about the stairs in their unit being unstable. However, the landlord failed to respond. If the tenant were to fall on the stairs and break a bone, the lack of maintenance on the part of the landlord is largely to blame for their injuries.
It is helpful to also understand that liability can be assigned to a landlord even if they are not directly responsible for their tenants' injuries. Injuries related to security-related events often fall into this category. Consider someone who sustained injuries after they were assaulted by a community intruder, for instance. Also, assume that the apartment community is to have guards patrolling the community, but on this night, no one was there.
Undoubtedly, the intruder is responsible for the injuries. However, the landlord could have some indirect liability since they did not assure that the community was being patrolled as it should. Therefore, they could be partly to blame.
It is important to understand that all situations are different. Rather than assume anything about your case, it is best to speak with personal injury lawyers for further direction.