Alabama’s laws regarding abandoned properties are designed to safeguard individuals from hazards associated with neglected or unoccupied properties. These laws specify the responsibilities of property owners to maintain their properties in safe condition and manage any potential risks. This ensures that even if a property is abandoned, it does not become a danger to the public.
If you have been injured because someone neglected their property, contact an Alabama premises liability attorney from The Vance Law Firm Injury Lawyers. We can help you understand your legal options and determine the best way to move forward with your case.
What Are Alabama’s Abandoned Property Laws?
Abandoned property can refer to residential or commercial structures that are no longer in use, have been left in a state of disrepair, or have been vacated by their owners.
Alabama’s premises liability law requires property owners to keep their properties reasonably safe. This also applies to abandoned or infrequently used properties, where owners can still be liable for injuries if they neglect to mitigate hazards.
Risks to Others on Abandoned Properties
Abandoned properties pose hazards to visitors and trespassers who might enter them, often leading to personal injury claims. Typical scenarios where these dangers can cause accidents and injuries include:
- Structural hazards. Abandoned buildings and structures often deteriorate over time due to neglect. Loose floorboards, unstable ceilings, or decaying walls can collapse or cause severe injuries to trespassers or visitors.
- Environmental dangers. Neglected properties may become breeding grounds for environmental hazards such as mold, asbestos, or toxic substances. Exposure to these elements can lead to health issues and personal injury claims.
- Neglected grounds. Overgrown vegetation, unkempt landscapes, and debris on abandoned properties can create tripping hazards or hide dangerous obstacles, increasing the risk of accidents.
- Attractive nuisance. Abandoned properties, especially those with swimming pools, trampolines, or other enticing features, may attract children unaware of the dangers. Property owners may still be liable if a child is injured while trespassing.
Abandoned Property and Liability
Owners and property managers can be held responsible for personal injuries in abandoned properties under certain conditions, such as:
- Knew or should have known of hazards. Property owners might be liable for injuries, including paralysis or traumatic brain injuries if they knew or should have known about hazardous conditions on their abandoned property through routine safety inspections.
- Failed to take adequate steps. Property owners and managers are responsible for addressing and rectifying known hazards or warning visitors about them. They may be liable for injuries if they don’t post warning signs or block off problem areas.
- Intentionally harm trespassers. Property owners cannot intentionally harm trespassers with a trap or pitfall. If an owner tries to cause damage to unwanted trespassers on an abandoned property, they can be liable for damages.
What to Do if You’re Hurt on an Abandoned Property
If you’ve been injured on a deserted property in Alabama, it’s essential to take steps to protect your rights to compensation in a personal injury claim. Here are a few actions you can take:
- Seek medical attention. Seek immediate medical attention, even if you feel fine after a fall. Timely medical care is vital for treating and documenting your injuries for your claim.
- Document the scene. If it’s safe, take photographs or videos of the accident scene, any hazards or dangerous conditions, and your injuries. This evidence can be valuable when building your case.
- Consult with an attorney. Personal injury claims involving abandoned properties are complex. For an evaluation of your case and legal options, consult with The Vance Law Firm Injury Lawyers. We can help determine if you have a valid claim against the property owner and guide you through the legal process.
Get Experienced Legal Guidance for Your Abandoned Property Injury Claim
If you’ve been injured on an abandoned property, it’s essential to know your legal rights. The attorneys at The Vance Law Firm Injury Lawyers specialize in premises liability cases in Alabama and can provide professional guidance to help you navigate the situation.
Contact us for a free consultation today. We’re available 24/7 to listen to your story and help you start your compensation claim.