Florida business and commercial property owners are obligated to implement basic security measures that are capable of preventing foreseeable dangers, including crimes, on their properties.
Inadequate security—also referred to as negligent security—is a premises liability issue that can become the basis of an inadequate security claim if the property owner’s failure to adequately secure the premises becomes the direct cause of a crime resulting in injury or death.
Examples of negligent security include:
- faulty locks
- malfunctioning or missing security cameras
- lack of streetlights
- inadequately trained guards
- reckless hiring of security staff
- non-secure walkways or entrances
- overgrown landscaping
If you’ve been robbed, mugged, battered, or assaulted on another person’s property, you may be eligible to file a negligent security claim against the property owner for personal injury or death.
Our Florida inadequate security lawyers can assess the details of your case and determine your legal options based on the nature of the incident and its resulting consequences to your physical, emotional, and psychological well-being.
Where Do Negligent Security Crimes Occur?
Any Florida business or commercial establishment can become the setting for a crime, although factors such as location and the strength of security measures can play an important role in their likelihood.
The following are some common settings where inadequate security crimes may occur:
- parking garages
- apartment buildings
- college campuses
- fitness centers
- daycare centers
- convenience stores or gas stations
- bars or restaurants
- shopping centers
- theme parks
- other public housing or public spaces
Florida property owners may be held liable for injuries and death that occur on their premises when and if they can be linked to the failure to adequately secure the property.
The amount and types of security property owners are obligated to provide may depend on the type of property and the property location. Florida business owners who have properties in high-risk areas may be required to implement more robust security measures to protect visitors from the foreseeable risk of harm.
Liability for negligent security crimes and resulting injury is based on the legal theory of negligence, which refers to any negligent action, or inaction, that directly causes the personal injury or death of another.
Types Of Negligent Security Cases In Florida
Lacking the proper security measures to adequately protect the health and safety of visitors on commercial property in Florida has been linked to a variety of crimes.
The majority of crimes reported in Florida negligent security cases are assault and battery, followed by sexual assault and rape, wrongful death, robbery, and other miscellaneous crimes.
Assault And Battery
Lack of security measures, or inadequate security, can increase the risk for assault and battery crimes, which can have traumatic consequences for victims.
Assault and battery make up a significant portion of negligent security claims and lawsuits, with many of these crimes occurring inside and outside bars, apartment buildings, retail stores, and movie theaters.
Sexual Assault And Rape
Sexual assault and rape make up a sizeable portion of crimes reported in Florida negligent security claims. It’s important to note that the vast majority of sexual assault and rape crimes go unreported, with an even smaller number of perpetrators facing consequences for their crimes.
Rape and sexual assault can have traumatic consequences, not the least of which may include physical injury to the victim. These crimes can have emotional and psychological consequences and can impact all areas of a person’s life, resulting in long-term personal and financial cost.
Violent crimes that occur on unsecured properties can have devastating and potentially fatal consequences. Fatal injuries reported in negligent security cases can leave significant heartbreak in their wake, affecting the lives of family members, friends, and other surviving loved ones who are left to process and grieve the loss of their loved one.
Robberies can occur in a variety of settings and may often involve the threat or use of physical force and deadly weapons. In Florida, robberies most commonly occur in the home, followed by banks, convenience stores, gas stations, highways, and on other commercial properties.
Miscellaneous Acts Of Violence Or Theft
Florida businesses and commercial properties can also be the sites of other crimes such as arson, motor vehicle theft, burglary, and false imprisonment.
Consequences Of Inadequate Security In Florida
Crimes that occur as a result of negligent security can leave significant personal and financial consequences in their wake. Surviving a crime can be traumatic for individuals, having short- and long-term costs to a victim’s physical, mental, and psychological health.
The following are potential costs and consequences of negligent security:
- minor to severe injuries
- psychological trauma
- inability to work
- medical expenses
- rehabilitation costs
Victims of inadequate security crimes may be able to seek compensation for these costs by filing a negligent security claim against the property owner for failing to adequately secure their premises.
Florida Premises Liability Laws
Florida negligent security cases fall under the purview of premises liability, which involves claims that are made against property owners for injuries or death that occur on their property as a result of inadequate security precautions.
This is because, under Florida law, Florida business and commercial property owners legally owe a duty of care to individuals who are lawfully on their property. This duty of care includes a responsibility to provide basic security and adopt safety measures to prevent foreseeable dangers to visitors.
Failing to provide basic security and keep the premises safe can be considered a breach in this duty of care, demonstrating negligence.
Under Florida law, plaintiffs (victims) in negligent security cases may be classified in one of the following ways:
An invitee is someone who has been invited, either implicitly or explicitly, onto the premises. This can include customers of business establishments, who are implicitly invited to visit and browse the available goods and services. A licensee is someone who is allowed on the property and similarly owed a duty of care, such as a company employee.
The legal rights of individuals who trespass on private or commercial property and suffer injury will often depend on whether the trespasser was discovered or undiscovered prior to the injury taking place. However, trespassers are generally owed a lower duty of care than people who have been invited or given license to be on the property.
Florida is what’s known as a comparative fault state. This means victims in negligent security cases may have their awarded compensation reduced in proportion to their percentage of fault for their injuries. This only applies in cases where the victim is determined to have been at partial fault for injuries sustained as a result of the crime.
Florida Inadequate Security Damage Claims
Individuals who are robbed, assaulted, or battered on another person’s property have a right to hold the property owner accountable for the consequences, if the incident occurred due to the failure of the owner to properly secure their premises.
The primary way for victims to seek justice for crime-related injuries that occur on another person’s property due to inadequate security is to file a negligent security claim.
Individuals who file a claim against a negligent property owner may be awarded damages in the form of monetary compensation. Certain cases may also award punitive damages.
To pursue an inadequate security case, victims of crime must be able to prove three basic elements:
- First, victims must be able to prove that they were owed a duty of care by the owner of the property to prevent foreseeable danger to their wellbeing.
- Second, there must be proof that the property owner breached this duty of care by way of failing to adequately maintain safe and secure property conditions.
- Third, victims must be able to prove that this lapse, or lack, of security on the property directly resulted in personal injury or the death of a loved one, as well as other personal and financial consequences such as medical expenses and trauma.
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How Long Do I Have To File A Negligent Security Claim In Florida?
Factors such as psychological trauma, lack of supportive resources, and fear about taking legal action may often prevent a person from coming forward directly after sustaining injury from a crime.
In Florida, victims of negligent security crimes have up to four years from the date of the injury to file a claim for damages.
Recovering Damages For Negligent Security Crimes And Injuries
If you’re unsure of your ability to press charges after experiencing a crime, speaking to a lawyer may be a helpful way to determine your eligibility to pursue a case and seek compensation for damages.
Types of damages that may be recovered in negligent security claims include:
- current and future medical expenses
- loss of income
- loss of earning capacity
- pain and suffering
- counseling costs
- wrongful death
- funeral and burial costs
- punitive damages
The types of damages you’re able to seek compensation for will largely depend on the nature of the incident and the proof you can provide for how it’s negatively impacted your life. Collecting evidence to prove your case may be a task best attended to by an experienced negligent security lawyer.
Reasons To Hire A Negligent Security Lawyer To Represent You
Holding Florida property owners accountable for injuries that occur on their premises is not always an easy task. Even seemingly straightforward cases can become complex, paving a challenging road ahead for victims who lack experienced legal representation.
Hiring a lawyer to represent you in a case is the most effective way to ensure you have someone on your side who can defend your right to seek justice and utilize the legal skills necessary to secure a fair settlement on your behalf.
At Florin|Roebig, our Florida negligent security lawyers are well-aware of the barriers victims of crimes can face in pursuing inadequate security cases. We have the experience, skills, and resources to effectively defend your rights as a plaintiff and work to ensure you receive the compensation to which you may be entitled.
Our negligent security lawyers can help you in the following ways:
- provide a free case evaluation to discuss the details of your case
- give you an estimated range for how much your settlement is worth
- conduct a full investigation of your case
- collect evidence to support your version of events, including security camera footage, witness testimony, police reports, and medical records
- communicate with the defendant and their legal representation on your behalf
- fight for a fair settlement that compensates you for costs of the property owner’s negligence
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Contact Us Today For A Free Case Evaluation
If you’ve been robbed, battered, assaulted, or the victim of another type of crime due to negligent security, our Florida lawyers can review your case and determine your legal options.
Don’t wait to learn what we may be able to do for you. Contact the offices of Florin|Roebig to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our top-rated Florida negligent security lawyers.