Is Your Landlord Liable for Criminal Activity?


March 22, 2016

Being injured or attacked in your home is terrifying. Your home is intended to be your safe place, your place of refuge. When someone enters your home with ill intents, it can feel like a violation and even result in considerable personal or financial damage. While your first call after any sort of criminal activity occurs in your home should be to the police, you will next want to notify your landlord. At times, landlords can be held accountable for criminal activity occurring on their rented premises if they acted in a negligent manner. Premises Liability is the area of law in which these types of cases are classified.

At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, our Atlanta personal injury attorneys assist the victims of criminal attacks in seeking compensation from the parties that allowed the attack to happen. At times, this means filing an action against the at-fault landlord in order to recover compensation for your damages. Below we discuss some of the issues surrounding landlord liability for criminal activity.

Negligent Security

Negligent security is the legal theory that holds that a landlord can be liable for some criminal activity occurring on the property. This is a complex theory and it is important for tenants to understand that their landlord will not be liable for all criminal events taking place on the property. Rather, liability only arises if the landlord acted in a negligent manner.

One of the central issues in any negligent security concerns the foreseeability of the criminal conduct. A landlord has the duty to exercise reasonable care to protect against criminal conduct that is foreseeable. Foreseeability is determined based on several factors, including prior crime in the area, the types of crime in the region and the proximity of crime. The nature of the rented property is another consideration. For instance, a landlord renting out a space as a bar might be able to foresee the threat of assault, whereas a landlord renting out a condo in a safe neighborhood might not.

Another factor is whether security measures could have prevented the crime. For instance, consider a situation in which an apartment complex routinely employs the services of a security guard, but on a given night a tenant is injured by a person breaking into his or her home. If the security guard did not make it to work that night and the landlord failed to provide an alternative means of security, the landlord could potentially be liable.

Landlord liability for criminal activities is a complex issue. If you have been injured while on a rented property, contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible for a free consultation. An attorney can examine the facts and circumstances of what happened and take the necessary steps to protect your rights.

Put Our Law Firm's Over 30 Years of Legal Experience to Work For You!

The Atlanta Personal Injury Attorneys at Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, help accident victims and their families in Georgia and in the Southeast. Our firm has over 30 years of experience that we will bring to your case. The sooner you act after your accident, the greater your chances of reaching a full recovery. As such, it is important that you seek the assistance of a licensed lawyer as soon as possible. Call Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law, 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Sources:

http://www.thefederation.org/documents/7.%20Negligent%20Security.pdf (downloads PDF to your computer)

http://www.nytimes.com/1998/11/25/nyregion/court-expands-liability-of-landlords-in-attacks-on-tenants-by-intruders.html 

Category: Personal Injury

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.