Each year, hundreds of individuals suffer from serious, preventable injuries that occur on public and private properties throughout Chicago. In these types of cases, known as premises liability claims, the issue often involves the building’s design, construction, and compliance with local or state ordinances.
Building codes are an essential component to safety as they ensure buildings are designed and constructed to be safe for the public. Codes outline minimum standards that must be followed and there are codes for every aspect of construction – from roofing to electrical to plumbing and even the foundation. These codes also regulate the types of materials and components used to construct and finish a building, ensuring it is safe and durable at the very core.
Building codes also address things that do not have to do with the overall construction, such as installation of fire sprinklers, use of smoke detectors, ADA compliance, emergency escape routes, and more.
Using Code Violations to Establish Negligence
Local, state, and federal building codes are handled by the city inspector. It is their job to examine buildings closely before, during, and after construction for any code violations. Negligence may be easier to prove if the building owner, manager, or lessee has an existing or previous code violation. If you have suffered from an injury because of that violation, the individual(s) responsible can be held liable for your damages.
To prove liability, you must meet the demands of the law, which includes a threshold that must be met to prove premises liability.
It is not uncommon for visitors of a property to suffer serious injury due to building code violations. In these cases, the building code violation has created a hazardous environment, and when a person is harmed because of it, they can file a claim against the party or parties responsible.
To establish negligence, the plaintiff is required to prove four key elements:
- There was a duty of care owed to the plaintiff. The plaintiff must show that the defendant owed a duty of care to them – including following all applicable building codes.
- The defendant breached that duty. Next, the plaintiff must show that the defendant breached their duty of care.
- The plaintiff must show proof of the breach. This means the plaintiff must show evidence that the defendant(s) failed to correct a building code violation or situation that they knew was hazardous to invitees of the property.
- The injuries must be the direct result of that breach. In order for a claim to be successful, the plaintiff must show that the breach of duty is what directly caused their accident and injury.
Get Assistance – Contact Malman Law
Slip and falls and other premise liability claims are complex and very difficult to resolve. You need to hire a personal injury attorney who understands building code requirements and premises liability law. Malman Law can help explore your options for compensation after your injury on someone else’s property. Contact us online or call 888-625-6265 for a free consultation.