Legal Counsel for Injury or Wrongful Death Victims of Office Building Negligence
Table of Contents
- What Constitutes Negligent Security in Commercial Office Buildings in Georgia?
- Proving Liability and Causation in Office Building Negligence Claims
- Compensation and Damages Recoverable in Office Building Negligent Security Injury Claims
- Types of Office Building Negligence Cases We Handle
- Further Reading on Office Building Negligence Cases
Millions of people across Atlanta and the state of Georgia visit and work in office buildings, businesses, and industrial complexes every day. Remote workers utilize co-working spaces every day or as needed. Whether it’s a law firm, a doctor’s office, an accounting firm, or even a hairdresser, office buildings are some of the busiest and most populated parts of the city.
Like any privately owned Georgia property, commercial office building owners and occupiers have a legal obligation under (O.C.G.A. §51-3-1) to provide invitees (employees), guests, and others with “adequate security.” When someone sustains injuries from inadequate or negligent security in an office building, owners, occupiers, and others can be held liable for those injuries.
What Constitutes Negligent Security in Commercial Office Buildings in Georgia?
Negligent security is part of a larger field of law known as premises liability. It requires property owners, occupiers, and in some cases, employees, to keep their property safe for everyone who visits. This includes providing adequate security.
There is no bright-line rule for the level of security Atlanta office buildings are expected to have. Every office building is different, and some offices might not have all the safety measures you might be used to in other work environments. For example, a small or medium-sized business, government office, or non-profit organization, might not have security staff. However, there may be industry standards, depending on the type or size of the business.
Typically, a commercial office building should have any combination of the following:
- Key card access.
- ID badges.
- Locking doors.
- Security cameras.
- Alarm systems.
- Security guards.
- Proper lighting.
- Slippery floors signage.
- Preventative maintenance.
Proving Liability and Causation in Office Building Negligence Claims
A property owner or occupier who either ignores the need for security measures or fails to provide any may be liable for injuries sustained by someone in an office building. The person injured because of the negligent security may be able to sue the owner.
The mere fact that an injury occurred in an office building does not in itself guarantee you have a case. There are many factors that must be carefully considered. One of the first elements we explore is what designation the plaintiff (injured person) had while on site. From a legal standpoint, there are three designations:
Someone who is invited or induced on site by the landowner for any lawful purpose (particularly when it is for the financial benefit of the landowner). Per O.C.G.A. 51-3-1, invitees are owed the highest duty of care. To protect them, property owners are expected to regularly inspect for potential hazards, address them promptly, and warn about them.
Someone who is lawfully on site for his/her own benefit, interests, convenience, or gratification. With licensees, O.C.G.A. 51-3-2 holds landowners liable only for “willful and wanton” injuries.
Someone who does not have permission or the legal right to be on the premises. Trespassers are owed the lowest duty of care, as landowners are only required, per O.C.G.A. 51-3-3, to avoid intentionally harming them. (The only exception is extended to young children under the attractive nuisance doctrine, but that typically doesn’t apply to office buildings where small kids aren’t usually running about.)
Compensation and Damages Recoverable in Office Building Negligent Security Claims
Getting injured at an office building because of negligent security can mean considerable losses. You may be out of work while you recuperate from your injuries, or you may be permanently disabled.
If a property owner’s negligence in providing adequate security leads to your injuries, you may be eligible to recover compensation for:
- Medical expenses.
- Lost wages, current and future.
- Property damage.
- Pain and suffering.
- Emotional trauma.
Georgia law has no limits on claims for negligent security, so you can recover the full amount of your claim.