Parking lots can be an area where a variety of accidents leading to serious injuries and even fatalities can occur. A parking lot may be owned by a private party or municipality but regardless have a responsibility to ensure the safety of those individuals who use their lots. This includes maintaining a parking lot that is safely designed, is structurally intact, properly lit at night and has security personnel so that patrons are not exposed to robbery or physical attack.
Parking lot accidents are varied and can result from a variety of causes:
- Poorly maintained ramps, stairways and sidewalks that lead to slip and falls
- Poor signage warning of hazards
- Defectively designed lots that cause blind spots or confuse drivers
- Careless drivers who speed or neglect to notice pedestrians and run them over or back into them
- Inadequate lighting
- Insufficient security
- Failure to warn of, remove, or remedy icy or other dangerous conditions
Depending on the type of accident, there may be one or multiple parties involved in accidents regarding parking lot injuries. Back up accidents usually result from motorists simply not paying attention to what is behind them. If the accident was caused by a motorist who was unable to safely navigate the maze that sometimes characterizes large parking garages, then the driver and owner of the garage may be held liable.
Parking lots need to be property maintained. Owners have a duty to inspect their lots and to warn patrons, who are considered to be invited guests, of hazards or to find and remedy any dangerous conditions such as ice following a cold winter storm or a defective step or unsafe stairwell. If the lot is not properly lit, a patron could slip and fall on a stairwell or objects in the lot. If physical assaults had occurred in the lot, then the owner should hire a security firm to monitor the lot. Should another assault occur, the owner and/or security firm could be found responsible for any injuries sustained by the assault victim because the owner knew or should have known of potential danger.
Further, if the parking lot is deemed unsafe from its design, then possibly the design or architectural firm that designed it could be also be legally responsible for your injuries.
If you or a loved suffered a serious injury or a fatality from a backup accident, assault, or slip and fall in a parking lot, contact an experienced parking lot injury lawyer immediately. Evidence needs to be preserved and a thorough investigation begun to determine liability in these often difficult and complex cases.
In some cases, you may be accused of contributing or even causing your own injuries by not paying attention to your surroundings or by taking an unnecessary risk. In Massachusetts, you can still collect compensation provided your own culpability is less than 50%. For example, if you are deemed 40% responsible and another party or parties are 60% at fault, you can collect 60% of your proven damages. If you are 50% liable or more, you would not collect anything. Insurance adjusters and defense lawyers in these cases will typically argue that you were at least partially responsible for your own injuries so contacting a personal injury lawyer promptly is essential.
Damages in Parking Lot Accident Cases
Parking lot injuries can be catastrophic if you are run over by a speeding vehicle or your child is injured or killed from a motorist backing up from a parking spot. Falling down a defective stairwell can cause massive injuries as can a physical assault from a robbery. These injuries include:
• Head injuries including traumatic brain injury (TBI)
• Broken limbs
• Internal organ damage
• Spinal cord injuries
You are entitled to compensation for your injuries from the responsible driver, parking lot owner, security or architectural firm. Your compensable damages include:
• Past and future loss of income
• Past and future medical expenses
• Lost earning capacity
• Loss of employment benefits
• Pain and suffering
• Spousal claim for loss of consortium
• Possible punitive damages if a fatality occurred
Consult Tim Houten, Parking Lot Injury Attorney
Injuries that occur in parking garages or lots are not that uncommon but can be difficult to prosecute. Your case deserves the attention and dedication from an attorney who has successfully handled such cases and who can properly advise you regarding your legal options. Attorney Tim Houten has been representing the legal interests of accident victims since 1982 and has obtained millions in compensation for his clients from a broad range of accident incidents including those sustained in parking lots. Contact him today for a free analysis of your parking lot injury case.