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Recent Injury Law Blog Posts

Special dates for remembering our lost ones

Posted on 11 September 2014

And so this day comes each year and I brace myself. The day itself is not quite as emotional anymore (thank goodness), now th... Read more


In Memoriam Sher Kung: Sharp legal mind…warm and witty soul.

Posted on 6 September 2014

The past week or so I’ve been focused on the start of school for our little one (kindergarten, so this is all new to m... Read more


Washington State Settles with Owen family for Tree Fall incident on Highway 2

Posted on 5 September 2014

The family members who survived the December 21, 2012 tree fall incident on U.S. 2 have settled their claims against the Stat... Read more


Premises Liability Attorneys

Premises Liability

Zula's fall at an established hotel left her with loss of vision in one eye.

Premises liability refers to the liability of landowners or landlords or occupiers of land for injuries that occur on their property.  Examples include someone falling through a rotten deck, someone slipping on a liquid spill at a store that the store failed to clean up, someone falling into a hole that was difficult to see, a child being injured in a fall from a window that was not properly guarded, or someone falling from an elevated platform that did not have proper guardrails.  A property owner can also be liable for inadequate security or lighting, such as an assault occurring in a parking lot that did not have adequate lighting at night.

The legal rules that apply in premises liability cases can vary depending on the injured person’s status on the property. 

The owner of the premises is liable for injuries caused when they knew of an unsafe condition, or failed to exercise ordinary care to discover the unsafe condition, and that they should have realized that this unsafe condition involves an unreasonable risk to harm others.

The duty of care may include removing the hazardous condition, safeguarding the hazardous condition, or at least warning of the hazardous condition.  A grocery store, hardware store or other business establishment has a duty to keep its premises reasonably free of physically dangerous conditions, like produce on the floor, falling merchandise, tripping conditions, etc.

Our tort system, which involves bringing civil lawsuits for people injured by the fault of others, has two primary goals.  The first is to change the conduct of people, corporations and government to make our world safer.  By holding parties at fault for the injury and damages they cause, we make people act safer.  By holding people at fault accountable for their action, we seek to change their actions in the future.  By having a system under which people know they will be held liable if they negligently harm another, we all act safer for the betterment of society.  The injured person may also be partially at fault and responsible and the law takes this into account.  The second goal is to compensate the injured person for the harm they have suffered.

Society becomes safer and better for what we do for our clients.  The risk of injuring others and being held liable for that harm assures that we keep our land and premises free of dangers for the safety of all.

Representative cases

Premises Liability

Petersen v. Finazzo - Mr. Petersen, an active young man was seriously hurt on the job but found justice through SKW attorneys. A jury rendered a verdict of $1,033,000 at his trial.

Zula Bryan v. [Confidential] hotel - Because of a hotel’s negligence, Zula Bryan has sustained serious and permanent injuries that have rendered her virtually blind in her right eye and caused chronic head and facial pain.

A $250,000 settlement in October 2008 for a fall into an empty, unguarded fountain basin at a crowded park at night, causing an upper arm fracture that required surgery.

A $4.5 million settlement in May 2008 for a spinal cord injury that resulted in the client being a tetraplegic.  Client dove into Lake Chelan in a city park and hit his head on submerged rocks. No warnings of the danger were posted.

A $ 1.033 million jury verdict, plus a $225,000 settlement for a total recovery of $1.258 million in January 2008 for injuries suffered when a structure collapsed causing a severe right foot fracture requiring fusion and fixation surgery with hardware.

A $1.1 million settlement in June 2007 involving a pipe fitter who suffered permanent injuries from a fall caused by hitting an overhead obstruction while climbing a scaffold access ladder.

A $3.2 million settlement in June 2006 for a child who suffered a brain injury in a fall from an apartment window.

A $1.135 million settlement in September 2005 for a mentally ill woman who slipped and fell at a care facility, resulting in a fractured leg and ultimately amputation below the knee.

A $1.575 million settlement in September 2004 for a child who suffered a brain injury in a fall from an apartment window.

A $400,000 settlement in 1999 for a fall in a sinkhole in a parking lot causing a fractured knee.

A $1.85 million settlement in 1997 for the deaths of two workers who went down a manhole and were asphyxiated due to lack of air monitoring.

A $400,000 settlement in 1997 for a fractured hip of a man who fell into the city transfer station due to lack of fall protection.

A jury verdict for 22 representative plaintiffs that equated to $7.4 million for all 241 plaintiffs in Grays Harbor County Superior Court, 1993.  Toxic tort claim for neighborhood exposure to sulfur gases from pulp mill wastewater treatment ponds.

A $500,000 settlement in 1983 for slip and fall in a public park.