Property owners in West Virginia and around the country owe a duty of care to visitors, but that does not mean that they can be held legally responsible for every accident that occurs on the premises they own or occupy. Premises liability lawsuits, just like other negligence claims, often hinge on questions of foreseeability as building owners or tenants argue that they should not be held accountable for accidents that no amount of maintenance or planning could have prevented.
West Virginia residents may not be surprised to learn that changes in balance that occur naturally as people age cause one in three elderly Americans to fall each year, but they may not know that young people may fall at an even higher rate. A report published in the scientific journal Human Movement Science looked into the fall rate of older individuals with college students, and they found that college students average one slip or fall every week.
On Feb. 20, about two dozen skiers fell and 100 more were stranded when the ski lift they were riding on malfunctioned, according to reports. Of those that fell from the lift, two were slightly injured.
West Virginia residents may have heard about a fatal accident that took place last summer at a festival in a Chicago suburb. On Aug. 2, 2015, a tent collapsed during a storm at Prairie Fest in Wood Dale, killing one person and injuring several others.
A company event or community carnival represents the chance for a good time, but people in West Virginia should remain attentive for hazards at recreational events. The following example of an injury at a company picnic highlights the litigation that sometimes results when a good time ends in the hospital.
West Virginia residents may be familiar with a deadly incident that made national news in June 2015, the collapse of a California balcony during a birthday celebration. The incident resulted in the deaths of six college students as well as the injury of seven additional students when they fell 50 feet. Five of the decedents were from Ireland. Some of the families of those affected have now filed legal claims in connection with the incident. Information about the damages sought by the families has not been released.
Virginia residents may want to learn more about laws governing attractive nuisances. Generally speaking, attractive nuisances are defined as objects, conditions or structures that are hazardous and also enticing or inviting to children. The property owner may be liable for the ensuing damages if a child is hurt as a result ad certain criteria are met. The guidelines for assessing whether or not the property owner is liable for an attractive nuisance can vary from case to case.
A season-ending injury sustained by Reggie Bush on the sidelines at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis may have been noticed by West Virginia NFL fans. The San Francisco 49er was injured during a slip and fall on concrete just past the sideline, raising a mass of complex questions as to who is responsible for the injuries sustained and to what degree.
Tennis fans in West Virginia likely recall Eugenie Bouchard's performance at Wimbledon in 2014 when she reached the women's singles final. The 21-year-old Canadian was once ranked fifth in the world before a Sept. 4 accident at the U.S. Open. Bouchard slipped and fell in a physiotherapy room at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, and she filed a lawsuit against the United States Tennis Association in a federal court in New York on Oct. 14 seeking unspecified monetary damages.
West Virginia residents may have heard about a man who suffered a brain injury while at a San Francisco park run by the National Park Service. He has filed a lawsuit against the United States government, the National Park Service, the Department of the Interior and San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park.