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Montgomery & Bucks County Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Thursday, May 25, 2017

I Was Assaulted In A Mall - Can I Sue The Mall For Inadequate Security?

Owners and managers of premises have a duty to provide security to their tenants and clients. They should ensure their premises are reasonably safe and secure so that tenants and clients are protected from foreseeably dangerous conditions. Failure to meet this obligation will give rise to a tort known as premises liability for which the injured victim can seek financial damages from the negligent owner or manager of the premises.

If you have been assaulted in a mall as a result of the failure of the mall to employ adequate security, you may have a cause of action against the mall. An experienced Pennsylvania negligent security lawyer can help you better understand your rights.

Negligent Security Cases

Negligent security cases generally arise from the failure of a building owner, manager or even security personnel to sufficiently man a premise. The premise could be a shopping mall, hotel, restaurant, gas station, apartment, office block, hospital, day care center, bar, nightclub, concert, sports stadium or parking lot.

For example, say a premise owner failed to provide adequate lighting in the parking lot, hired poorly trained security officers or bouncers, did not use proper locks, had a faulty alarm system or did not adequately warn visitors of dangerous places. All these are instances of inadequate security.

Inadequate security at these venues can lead people of ill intent to commit serious offences such as physical assault, sexual assault, robbery or mugging. In severe cases, the injuries sustained by the victims of these offences can cause death.

Negligent security cases arise when an attack or assault occurs in an unsafe premise.

How Courts Have Handled Cases of Negligent Security

In Florida, a court held that a fun park was 90 percent negligent when an invitee was attacked right next to the premise. The plaintiff had been shot while leaving an argument between teenagers. The plaintiff successfully proved that the area was a crime hotspot where numerous crimes and taken place hence the park owners should have provided adequate security to prevent an attack.

In other negligent security cases, damages have been awarded to:

  • A plaintiff injured after a fight broke out in a courtroom
  • The estate of a deceased who succumbed to a fatal stabbing outside a night club
  • A plaintiff injured in a fight outside a night club
  • The estate of a deceased pharmacist shot by a drug addict while working at a medical care facility
  • An office worker assaulted at a dark corner of a parking lot.

Succeeding in a Negligent Security Case

If you were assaulted at a mall as a result of inadequate security, you will have to prove the following in court to succeed in your negligent security case:

  • The mall owed you a duty of care to provide adequate security
  • The mall failed in its duty to provide adequate security, resulting in the assault
  • You have suffered physical harm as a direct result of being assaulted.

Pennsylvania has complex negligent security laws. Finding an Pennsylvania personal injury attorney who understands the state’s tort laws can be the difference between getting financial damages for all your pain and suffering and losing your case. Schedule a consult with the Pennsylvania negligent security lawyers at Louis P. Lombardi II & Associates today.


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