Most people expect to be safe when visiting another person’s property or attending social events. However, the property owner is responsible for providing a safe environment for guests. When a commercial or residential property owner does not take appropriate steps to protect visitors from criminal activity, they can be held responsible for damages resulting from a crime.
If a property owner fails to provide adequate security on their property, and you fall victim to a crime as a result, Nessler & Associates can help you file a lawsuit against the property owner for negligent security. We will help you recover compensation for the physical and mental injuries that you have suffered due to a preventable crime.
What is Negligent Security?
Illinois law requires that property owners provide “reasonable care” to visitors on the property, which includes reasonable protection from crime. If there are insufficient security measures to protect visitors from crime, and the guest falls victim to a foreseeable crime, the guest can file a lawsuit against the property owner for providing inadequate security.
For example, you are attacked by a burglar while walking through a restaurant’s unlit parking lot. The property owner had not installed proper lighting systems or security cameras to deter crime in the parking lot, even though about 47% of violent crimes occur in commercial areas like parking lots.
In this situation, you could file a negligent security claim against the property owner for failing to provide protection against the robbery.
Negligent security claims are separate from criminal cases. A criminal case is considered a case between the local government and the perpetrator of the crime to determine whether the perpetrator is responsible. However, a negligent security claim is a civil case between you and the owner of the property that allows you to potentially recover financial compensation for the property owner’s negligence.
Requirements for Property Security
Property security laws vary by state. In Illinois, all property owners must offer reasonable care to visitors. This law applies to commercial, residential, public, and private property owners.
The standard for “reasonable care” depends on the location and event. For example, property owners would be expected to provide more security for guests in an area with a history of crime. Similarly, extra security must be provided to account for the number of people at a large event like a concert.
Examples of Negligent Security
Property owners can be held liable for negligent security. Inadequate security, faulty or malfunctioning security equipment, or missing security protections can all form the basis of a negligent security claim.
Some common examples of negligent security include:
- Broken or missing security cameras
- Malfunctioning door or window locks
- Inadequate lighting
- Broken or missing alarm systems
- Indiscriminate sharing of private keys or access codes
- Insufficient, inadequately trained, or negligent security guards
The legal team at Nessler & Associates can determine whether the property owner took appropriate steps to protect visitors from criminal activity. If they did not, your legal representative can help you file a claim for negligent security.
The Impact of Negligent Security on Victims
Violent crimes can have long-lasting effects on victims. They may suffer serious injuries that cause permanent scarring or disability and often develop socioemotional difficulties like post-traumatic stress disorder, making them fearful of going out.
Many public and private properties have security measures to protect against these violent crimes. When violent crimes result from inadequate security, it can amplify the victim’s fears, who may feel like they were attacked in an area where they were supposed to be safe. Many survivors often require therapy to overcome these difficulties.
A negligent security lawyer at Nessler & Associates can help you recover financial compensation for your physical and emotional damages. The attorneys have helped many victims claim compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, and the pain and suffering they experienced after the incident.
Do I Have a Negligent Security Claim?
Determining whether you have a valid negligent security claim can take time and effort. In a negligent security case, you must prove that:
- The property owner owes you a duty of care
- There was insufficient or negligent security on the premises
- You were a victim of a foreseeable crime on the premises
- The offense would not have occurred with proper security
- You suffered damages because of the crime.
To determine whether a crime was foreseeable, you need to prove there was a known risk of violent crime that the property owner was aware of. However, many people are unsure how to prove that a crime was preventable. Additionally, it can be challenging to prove some types of damages, like lost wages or physical and mental pain.
If you are unsure whether you have a claim, consult a negligent security attorney at Nessler & Associates. You will meet with an experienced lawyer who can review the facts of your case, determine whether you have a valid claim against the property owner, and help you prove your damages in court.
Proving a Negligent Security Claim
Filing a negligent security claim can be challenging, as you must prove that the crime was foreseeable and only occurred due to negligent security. This will require providing evidence such as:
- Records of prior crimes near the property
- Records of keys being issued or duplicated
- Proof of missing or broken security equipment
- Proof of insufficient or inattentive security personnel
- Previous negligent security incidents in the same area
- Evidence that the property owner was aware of the problem but was not taking steps to resolve it or mitigate risk
A skilled negligent security lawyer at Nessler & Associates can gather evidence that the property owner did not take adequate precautions to protect you from criminal activity. For example, your attorney may collect evidence that the security cameras had been malfunctioning for many months and that the property owner failed to repair them.
File Your Negligent Security Lawsuit with Nessler & Associates
Everyone deserves to feel safe on someone else’s property. If you or a loved one were the victim of a violent crime on a commercial or residential property, Nessler & Associates can help. Our firm’s experienced attorneys represent victims from Illinois, Florida, Texas, and Colorado in negligent security cases.
Nessler & Associates’ skilled legal team will build a strong claim against the property owner and help you recover the compensation you deserve. Call us at (800) 727-8010 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.