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Atlanta Premises Liability Attorneys

Georgia Premises Liability Claims

When you walk into a public building in the Atlanta area, whether it is a store, movie theater, or restaurant, the last thing on your mind is watching out for tripping hazards. You are focused on what you are there for—groceries, meeting friends, ordering coffee to go—whatever it may be.  
You have an expectation, conscious or not, that you will be safe as you cross the floor, climb the stairs, or walk down the sidewalk. Although you should walk with care and avoid obvious hazards, there are some dangers you may not see that could trip you up along the way. When this happens, the property owner may be liable for compensating you for any injuries you suffer, but only under certain legal circumstances. The premises liability attorneys at Shane Smith Law can tell you whether you have a case and how to proceed if you do.

Call (980) 246-2656 or contact us online to learn more about your options after an accident on someone else's property.

What Is Premises Liability?

While some falls are purely accidental, others are caused by someone’s failure to secure the property, repair a hazard, or adequately warn others about the dangerous condition. When a property owner or possessor of the property knows about a hazardous condition—or should have known about the danger—and fails to act appropriately to make sure no one gets injured, the owner could be liable for the injuries or fatalities that result.

In fact, Georgia law requires property owners to keep their buildings and surrounding land safe. This means that property owners have a duty to maintain their property so that those who visit, live, or work there can be on the property without being at risk of harm. Essentially, if unsafe conditions exist that lead to an individual slipping and falling, the owner may be held financially responsible for injuries that occur on the premises. Other types of premises liability claims include the following:

  • Objects falling from shelves
  • Swimming pool accidents and drownings
  • Dog bites or animal attacks
  • Fire or toxic fume exposure
  • Negligent security leading to an assault and other violent encounters
  • Structural collapses
  • Defective elevator or escalator accidents
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Staircases with broken steps or poor lighting
  • Faulty or missing stair rails and balcony railing
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Uneven ground or cracked sidewalks
  • Slippery surfaces, wet floors or spilled liquids

What Damages are Available?

If someone is hurt due to the negligence or recklessness due to a breach of duty of care, there may be one or more type of damages available:

  • Medical costs
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Pain and suffering

Parties That Can Be Held Responsible for Premises Liability

Property owners may not be the only ones liable. Other responsible parties may include:

  • Possessors of property
  • Retail establishments
  • Supermarkets
  • Bars and restaurants
  • Landlords
  • Office buildings
  • Apartment complexes
  • Property management companies
  • Amusement parks
  • Hotels

Get Started Today

An attorney skilled in Georgia premises liability law will know how to present your case, know how much your case should be worth, and know how to get you the compensation you deserve. After suffering injuries on someone else’s property, don’t suffer the financial consequences as well. Talk with Shane Smith Law to discuss your case and find out your rights. 

Call (980) 246-2656 and receive a free, private consultation today.

Do Property Owners Owe a Duty of Care to Everyone Who Comes On Their Property?

Based on Georgia law, premises owners have a duty of care to some, but not all individuals on their property. 


The first class of individuals owed a duty of care is an “invitee.” These individuals are “invited” by the premises owner explicitly or implicitly for any purpose allowed by law. 


Premises owners have limited, if any liability, for trespassers. Individuals in this class are owed no duty of care by the premises owner because there is no permission or expectation of the trespasser entering their premises and/or adjoining property.


A “licensee” is another protected class of individuals under Georgia’s premises liability law. According to the law, for an individual to be considered a licensee, all of the following is applicable:

  1. Cannot be a trespasser, servant or customer of the premises owner
  2. Is not a party to any contract related to the premises owner or the premises itself
  3. Is allowed on the party, directly or indirectly, for their own self-interest.     

Premises owners may be liable to licensees for wanton or willful injuries only. A prime example for this class of people would be a social guest that visits a friend of family member’s home.

What To Do After a Premises Liability Accident

Your first steps after one of these types of accidents should be to:

  1. Call the police to report the accident
  2. Ask for paramedics to come if you are injured and seek medical attention
  3. Report the accident to the property owner, store manager, or landlord
  4. Take photographs of the accident scene and your injuries (this can be done with your cell phone camera)
  5. Gather evidence including names and numbers of all witnesses
  6. Take notes about how the accident occurred, what shoes you were wearing if you fell, and what you can remember about the accident
  7. Keep all clothing that may have evidence of your injury
  8. Talk with a skilled premises liability attorney to find out about your rights