Landlords’ liability extends much further than many may realise.
Regardless of whether a property is owned by a private landlord, a housing association or a local authority, the owner of that property has a duty to ensure that the premises are safe for those either living there or visiting them.
The Occupiers Liability Act 1957 deals with liability that arises from accidents caused by defective or dangerous conditions of premises, including rented accommodation, shops, supermarkets, nightclubs, restaurants, etc.
It was this particular law that applied to a recent personal injury claim that we handled.
Our client, a housing association tenant, was sitting outside her front door enjoying the sunshine and watching her children play. Suddenly and without warning, a large section of the concrete canopy over the door fell off and struck her on the arm.
She escaped serious injury but did suffer swelling and bruising to her arm and a cut to her elbow. Our client was naturally very shaken by the incident, especially as her three young children were playing nearby.
The following morning, still in pain and now unable to grip anything, she decided to go to the local A&E and have her injuries checked. Fortunately, x-rays showed there were no fractures and she was discharged with a prescription for strong pain killers.
The housing association, as landlords, accepted liability for the injuries and an out of court settlement was agreed.
In this particular case it would have been difficult for the landlords to argue liability. They were aware of safety issues with the canopies and had removed them from most of the properties. Our client’s property was one of only a few on the street that still had a canopy.
If you have suffered an injury in premises that belong to someone else, we may be able to help you recover compensation on a no win no fee basis. Call for details – 01302 320621