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IL injury lawyerDid you know that over 80 percent of homicides and 37 percent of assaults are committed by people under the influence of alcohol? Alcohol is thought to increase impulsive and aggressive behaviors because of the substance’s effect on the brain mechanisms that typically inhibit these behaviors. It is no surprise then that physical altercations are common in bars, restaurants, nightclubs, and other establishments that serve alcohol. If you or a loved one were injured in a bar fight or another physical altercation while in a commercial establishment, it is important to know your rights. You may be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills, and other damages.

Personal Injury Claims Involving Assault and Battery

Most victims of assault and battery know that the aggressor can face criminal charges for his or her violent conduct. Fewer realize that they may have the option of bringing a civil claim for damages in addition to the criminal charges. If somebody attacked you in a bar or other commercial establishment or you were injured by other patrons who were fighting each other, you may have several legal avenues for pursuing compensation for your damages. You may be able to bring a personal injury claim directly against the individual who hurt you. You may also be able to bring a premises liability claim against the establishment itself.

Premises Liability Claim for Lack of Security

Premises liability deals with the duties that property owners have to individuals visiting their properties. Bar and nightclub owners have a legal duty to maintain reasonably safe premises and prevent avoidable injuries. This includes implementing adequate security measures. If a property owner’s failure to maintain reasonably safe premises results in a patron’s injury or death, the property owner may be liable for damages. However, determining what constitutes “reasonably safe” is not easy. Typically, premises liability claims come down to the foreseeability of the injury. If a bar or nightclub has a known problem with customers becoming physically violent and the property owner does not take steps to increase security measures, the property owner may be considered negligent.

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IL accident lawyerProperty owners and possessors have a duty of care to keep their property reasonably safe for invited guests to the property. This includes properly maintaining the property, taking reasonable steps to remove environmental hazards, and providing adequate security. When a property owner or possessor fails to uphold his or her duty to maintain a safe property and someone is injured or killed as a result, a premises liability claim can help the injured person or surviving family members recover compensation. Although many people typically think of things like broken staircases or wet floors when they think about premises liability, inadequate security can also lead to a premises liability claim.

Insufficient Building Security Can Lead to Injuries

Understandably, property owners cannot be held responsible for acts of violence that are unforeseeable. However, when a person is injured in an attack and that attack could have been prevented through better security, the property owner may be considered negligent.

For example, imagine the following scenario: A hotel owner is notified that many of the locks on the hotel doors do not actually work. However, he ignores the problem and continues to rent the rooms with defective locks to hotel guests. A guest is sexually assaulted when an attacker easily gains entry into her hotel room. In this scenario, the owner who failed to maintain adequate security could be held liable for the woman’s damages.

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