Negligent security is an area of premises liability that deals with holding property owners liable for any damages or injuries held on their property due to a lack of reasonable security. This can include both commercial and residential properties.
Injured individuals bring forward negligent security lawsuits due to landowners or property possessors failing to offer reasonable security that could have protected them from injuries caused by third parties.
Here are some examples – as well as actions you can take – if you suspect you have fallen victim due to negligent security:
Examples of Negligent Security
The majority of negligent security cases are filed against owners of public properties or venues that house numerous individuals. Examples could include:
Sporting event venues
It’s easy in such public places for malicious criminal activity to take place, whether that’s a robbery, assault, etc. With proper security, most activity can be prevented or stopped before serious damage has been done; however, if a property is negligent with security, malicious activity can become much worse and result in much higher damages.
Some examples of negligent security include:
Low or inadequate lighting
Improperly maintained security systems
Lack of security guards
Poor locks or other security devices
When You Can Sue for Negligent Security
If you’re injured in a public place or other environment that’s responsible for keeping you safe, and it’s determined that a security deficiency is the cause of your incident, you may have the right to sue the property owners for negligent security.
The theory behind these cases is that the defendant property owner that controls a particular premise has a duty to protect a individuals from suffering a criminal attack if that attack was reasonably foreseeable. When a property owner knows that crimes are likely to occur and fails to have any security measures in place to protect patrons and/or their tenants or other individuals, the law will hold that entity responsible if individuals are injured as the result of a violent crime. Whether we can establish that the criminal attack suffered by the plaintiff was “reasonably foreseeable” is the crux of holding the business responsible for the client’s injuries in these types of cases.
To show the crime was foreseeable, we need to be able to establish that the business or landlord or property owner knew or should have known that there was a likelihood that the crime would occur. This is called establishing “notice.” In negligent security cases, evidence of past similar crimes becomes critical. Also of significance is the time in between those past crimes and the one that has caused the plaintiff harm, as well as the geographic proximity of those past crimes to the new one. Thus, a plaintiff could use prior thefts and property crimes to establish that an assault is reasonably foreseeable.
To prevail in a negligent security case, a plaintiff must prove a landowner failed to take reasonable care in assessing the possibility of criminal activity, or to have failed to warn patrons or employees or tenants of possible crime.
Efforts to provide security are considered adequate based on the surrounding conditions. For example, an area with a high rate of violent crime may require trained security patrols and well-lit parking lots to meet the standard of reasonable care. If property crime is the main issue, better locks, coded keypads, and security cameras may be considered means of reasonable care.
Every case is different. There are different factors and circumstances involved in a negligent security case. Investigating prior crimes and understanding this area of the law is critical aspect that needs to be explored.
If you have been injured as a result of the property owner’s failure to provide you with adequate security, you may be able to take legal action against the property owner. The Law Office of Dimitrios Kourouklis, Ph.D. takes a strong stance against negligent property owners who fail to maintain their premises and knowingly endanger their tenants, guests, and/or patrons. We encourage you to get in touch with a New York Premises Liability Attorney at the Law Office of Dimitrios Kourouklis, Ph.D. to talk about your rights as a victim and what legal options are available to you. Depending on the facts and circumstances regarding your possible claim, time may be of the essence.
Our experienced team of New York Premises Liability Attorneys stands ready to fight for justice on behalf of negligent security victims in the New York area. Our team of New York attorneys represents negligent security victims in New York County, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, Staten Island, Nassau County, Suffolk County, and Westchester County. To schedule a free initial consultation with our firm, please call our office at (929) 400-7608, contact us by filling out our online form here, or email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.