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Houston Premises Liability Lawyers

Both legally and socially speaking, public and private property owners must care for their properties so guests and visitors are not harmed. When property owners or their managers don’t take proper precautions to keep others safe, they can be held liable for their negligence in a premises liability claim.

That’s where our Houston premises liability lawyers come in. Our Nix Patterson attorneys can fight for your rights and maximum compensation when a property owner’s negligence or wrongful action injures you. Whether you were hurt in a fall, dog attack, or other type of accident, you could be entitled to compensation for medical bills and much more. If you have been hurt on another person’s property, speak to a Nix Patterson attorney today to learn if you have a case.

What Is Premises Liability?

Premises liability law in Texas states that property owners and managers could be liable when others are hurt on their property. However, this doesn’t mean the property owner is necessarily liable for every injury that occurs on their property.

The first part of a premises liability claim hinges on you being on the other person’s property or premises. A premise means all parts of the property: the land, buildings, and other improvements and structures. You may be on someone’s premises in their home, on a lawn or sidewalk, or inside a building.

There are many kinds of premises, and our Houston personal injury attorneys routinely handle cases involving most of them. Many of our clients are injured on private property that is open to visitors and guests, such as a shopping mall, grocery store, amusement park, stadium, or theater. Other cases involve injuries in someone’s home, such as near a swimming pool, stairs, or slippery floor.

The second part of a premises liability claim involves the injury itself. The owner or manager of the property must be shown to have been aware or should have been aware of the hazard that injured you. For example, if you’re hurt in a grocery store when you slip on a puddle inside the front door, the owner or manager should have been aware of that hazard.

The third part of the claim involves why you were on the property. The owner’s or manager’s responsibility to you can differ based on why you were there. In Texas, you will be defined as a licensee, invitee, or trespasser in a premise liability case:

  • Someone on the property with the owner’s or occupier’s consent for a non-commercial reason. As a licensee, you are on the other person’s property for your benefit. For example, you would be a licensee if your neighbor invited you to their home for a party.
  • Someone on the property with the owner’s consent for a business purpose that benefits both sides. An example would be if you visit a store to purchase groceries.
  • Someone who does not have permission to enter another party’s property. For example, you are a trespasser if you enter a store after hours without the owner’s consent.

If you trespass on another party’s property, the owner or manager has little duty of care toward you. This means they do not have to keep you safe; they only have to avoid intentional misconduct or gross negligence.

You are essentially a guest or customer if you are a licensee or invitee. In either case, the owner or manager owes you a duty of care. This means they must use ‘ordinary care’ to ensure the property is ‘reasonably safe.’ They must also warn guests and visitors if they know of a dangerous condition.

In many cases, the property owner or manager can only be held responsible for defects they were aware of. But if you are an invitee, it may be possible to hold them liable for dangers they had constructive knowledge of. You might hold them liable for dangers they should have found with an inspection.

Premises liability laws in Texas are complicated, and many factors will influence whether the owner or manager owed you a duty of care when the accident happened. To determine the owner’s duty and your rights in that situation, refer to a Houston premises liability lawyer at Nix Patterson immediately. If your premises liability claim is valid, our attorneys can assist you with the legal and insurance issues as they arise.

What are Common Types of Premises Liability Cases?

Our experienced premises liability lawyers at Nix Patterson handle almost every kind of premises liability claim, including:

Slip and Fall Incidents

Slips and falls are among the most frequent types of premises liability lawsuits. Slips can happen because of spills, wet or slick floors, ice or snow on sidewalks and parking lots, and issues with carpets and rugs. Anything that lowers the friction between your shoes and the walking surface could make you slip and fall.

In some cases, the fall could hurt but not cause serious injury. But a slip and fall can cause severe injuries: fractures, joint dislocations, head and neck trauma, and back injuries. In a fall from a height, you could have severe injuries that leave you permanently disabled.

Swimming Pool Accidents

We have many public and private swimming pools in the Lone Star State. You and your family might enjoy using a neighbor’s pool or visiting your country club pool. In either situation, you should be able to expect that the area will be safe. You shouldn’t worry about a slick surface, uncovered pool filters, or tripping hazards such as furniture around the pool. If you are hurt in or around a pool, speak to a Houston premises liability attorney promptly.

Dog Bites

Dog bites and animal attacks are common premises liability claims in Houston. If you walk in a park and are bitten by someone’s dog, you could have a case. You also could have a claim if you were on the owner’s property with their permission and were attacked by their dog.

Negligent Maintenance

If someone invites you to a property, it is the owner’s job to maintain the property safely. This duty extends to walkways, lands, and the outside and inside of all buildings. The property should be inspected regularly to find any hazards that customers or guests might not have noticed. If there are possible hazards, they should be fixed, or warnings should be posted. Failure to do these things could be negligent maintenance.

Inadequate Security

If you’re hurt by inadequate security, you may have a premises liability claim. A typical example is going to a bar and being hurt when another patron attacks you or another party. It’s possible that the situation could have been avoided if there had been more effective security personnel on hand.

Open and Obvious Hazards

Note that property owners aren’t always responsible for your injuries in Texas. The law states that the owner or manager may not be liable if the hazard is open and obvious. A hazard is open and evident if an ‘average person’ would have been aware of it. For example, if a customer dropped a container of purple grape juice on the floor, it would be expected that you would have been able to see it.

However, if you have vision problems, it’s possible the property owner could still be liable. What is an open and obvious hazard is open to considerable interpretation, so consult a premises liability attorney in this case.

What Damages Can I Recover in a Premises Liability Case?

If you were hurt by a hazard on someone’s property, you could have a premises liability claim. Our Nix Patterson premises liability attorneys will review your case during a free consultation. If your case qualifies, we will pursue a fair settlement that covers all economic and non-economic damages, including:

  • Medical expenses. Current and future medical bills for treatment and rehabilitation. Your attorney will work with your medical team to assess your future medical needs so that you can recover as fully as possible.
  • Lost earnings. You may be entitled to lost wages you incurred after the injury and into the future.
  • Lost earning capacity. If your injury is long-term or permanent, you may not earn the same wage or salary as before. You could be entitled to compensation for your lost earning capacity.
  • Pain and suffering. Many premises liability injuries are painful, and you can receive compensation for your physical pain and suffering. This imprecise amount is open to interpretation, and your attorney will aggressively negotiate with the insurance company for the most compensation.
  • Physical limitations. A long-term or permanent injury could lead to physical limitations, such as an inability to walk or run. These limitations could result in considerable compensation.
  • Mental anguish. You may be entitled to compensation for the mental anguish you experience from your injuries and the necessary treatments.

Many premises liability injury victims don’t fully understand the value of their claim. You could be unaware, for example, that you are entitled to compensation for your lost future earning ability or mental anguish from being unable to do things you could before the injury. This is one of the most critical reasons to hire an experienced premises liability attorney. When you hire a Nix Patterson attorney, you have someone next to you experienced in these complex cases who will negotiate for maximum compensation.

What Should I Do if I Am Injured on Someone Else’s Property?

You could be eligible for compensation if you suffer an injury in Houston on someone’s property. The chances to receive fair compensation in a claim or lawsuit improve if you do the following:

  • Get immediate medical attention. If you are seriously injured, call 911, or visit the ER as soon as possible. Getting immediate medical care ensures the best outcome for your health and well-being. Furthermore, having prompt medical attention will help with your subsequent claim or lawsuit. Not receiving fast medical care may cause the insurance company to question your injuries.
  • Inform the property owner or manager of your injury immediately. If you slipped and fell at the grocery store, report the incident to the manager onsite.
  • Obtain video and photographic evidence of the dangerous condition that injured you. For example, if you fell and broke your ankle on ice in a mall parking lot, get pictures and video to prove the dangerous condition.
  • Make a record of eyewitness’ names and contact information. Get their statements about what happened, and give them to your attorney.
  • Speak promptly to a Nix Patterson premises liability attorney in Houston. You have only two years from the date of the injury to file a claim. The faster you get an attorney on the case, the better the chances for fair compensation.

Protecting Your Rights as a Victim

You may have a strong premises liability claim that you are certain will lead to compensation. However, many things can go wrong in a premises liability claim.

For example, be careful who you speak to about your premises liability claim. You should usually only talk to your attorney, doctor, and immediate family members about the case while it is pending. Sharing information about a personal injury claim on social media while it is ongoing is never a good idea; the insurance company may monitor your social media channels and attempt to use your words against you.

Also, any delay in retaining a premises liability attorney could cause problems with the claim. You may be unfamiliar with negotiating effectively with the insurance company and could even say something damaging to your case. It’s always best to have an attorney step in as early in the case as possible.

Contact Nix Patterson’s Houston Premises Liability Lawyers Today

When you enter a person’s business or home, you should be able to expect that you will be safe there. There should not be any hazards that can hurt or kill visitors or guests. However, not all property owners are responsible, and many Houstonians are injured when visiting personal and business properties every year.

If you are injured on someone’s property in Houston, you should take prompt legal action to obtain compensation for your losses. A Nix Patterson premises liability lawyer could assist you, so contact us today for more information.


Nix Patterson only works on a contingency fee basis. Our clients pay us nothing unless we win. Schedule a free consultation today. Call 512.328.5333 or complete the form below. 

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