Succeeding in Your California Premises Liability Case When You are a Contractor Retained by the Property Owner

Legal News GavelWhen you are an independent contractor and you’re hurt on the property of the party who hired you, your premises liability lawsuit can potentially be more complicated. In this type of situation, California law says that there are only two scenarios in which you can proceed with an injury lawsuit: “when the hirer exercised control over the contractor’s work in a manner that had contributed to the injury” and “when the hirer failed to warn the contractor of a concealed hazard on the premises.” If your situation doesn’t include either of those scenarios, then the property owner may be able to get your case dismissed before it even gets to trial, so proving one or both of these exceptions is of paramount importance. To make sure your premises liability case is as complete and unassailable as possible, be sure to retain the services of an experienced California injury attorney.

A recent case from Southern California shows how a worker can proceed in a situation like this,  avoiding a defendant’s request for summary judgment. The injured man was a professional window washer. The injury took place at the property of a very popular and successful singer of the 1950s and 60s. The singer’s home included an indoor pool that was covered by a large, round skylight. While his team was performing a cleaning job of the skylight, the window washer slipped and fell off the roof of the home after he had communicated instructions to the other window washers.

The injured window washer sued. Whether you are on the roof of a home, the yard attached to a home or inside a home, if you’re there with permission, the homeowner has a legal obligation to keep the premises safe for you. If a dangerous condition exists, the law says that the homeowner must correct the hazard or warn of the hazard. In the window washer’s situation, he asserted that there was loose rocks, pebbles and sand on the roof, which was what caused him to slip and fall off the roof. He also alleged that the roof was dangerous because the ledge required to access the skylight lacked safety railings and the shingles on the roof were “dilapidated,” making the surface slippery.

The window washer had proof that his case potentially fit within the second of the two exceptions California law recognizes. That exception covers both hidden hazards and open hazards if the open hazard was unavoidable. The slippery conditions on the ledge were arguably something that, although open and known by the injured worker, were something could not “be practically avoided” by him. When you are injured because you slip or trip on a hazard that was unavoidable due to the requirements of your job, then that fulfills one of the exceptions and you can continue your case for compensation.

For helpful advice and determined advocacy in your premises liability or other personal injury case, contact the skilled San Mateo personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos. Our attorneys have been helping injured for many years to utilize the legal system to get the recoveries they need. To set up a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys, contact us at 650-345-8484 or through our website.

More Blog Posts:

Release Agreement Contracts and How One California Woman Defeated Hers in Winning Her Trip-and-Fall Lawsuit, San Mateo Injury Lawyers Blog, Published July 19, 2018

Injured Boy Obtains $47.5M Settlement After Catastrophic Tree Injury in San Mateo County Park, San Mateo Injury Lawyers Blog, Published July 12, 2018