I am a 22 year old male combat vet. Due to the extreme neglect of my appartment complex, the hallway railing I was leaning against on the third floor gave way and I fell to the groung, breaking bones and nerve damage. The question I have is do I have a good case?
Landlords in Florida are responsible to maintain properties in accordance with applicable building, health and safety codes. Where there are no applicable building, housing, or health codes, maintain the roofs, windows, screens, doors, floors, steps, porches, exterior walls, foundations, and all other structural components in good repair and capable of resisting normal forces and loads and the plumbing in reasonable working condition. If the landlord failed to use reasonable methods to maintain the railing and the probable result of their failure to maintain the rail was that you would fall and your fall was due to their failure to maintain the rail causing serious injury, you can file a claim for personal injury against the landlord for medical bills, lost earnings, pain and other physical suffering, permanent physical disability and disfigurement, and emotional distress. Thank you for your service to our country. S/F Ed Spinks
Yes. The owner of the property is under a legal duty to properly install the railing and maintain the railing. FL building codes require that railings be properly installed so that they can support a substantial amount of weight; certainly more than that of an adult male. Unless there was something recently done to the railing that the owner had no way to know about, it sounds like a strong case of negligence. As the previous post notes, in Florida you would be entitled to recover for your medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life (non-economic) damages if you were able to prove the owner breached its legal duty to properly install or maintain this railing and that is what caused your injuries. I would recommend that you contact an attorney to discuss your legal rights in more detail.
If you do not know a personal injury attorney in Ft. Myers, you may want to use The Florida Bar referral service. Their number is 800-342-8011 or you can go to their website at www.floridabar.org. Most attorneys, like our firm, who sign on to this agree to do a low-cost or sometimes free initial consultation. That way, an attorney in your area with experience with these claims, can evaluate your claim and assess for you what a jury in your area might think of your claim.
Please be advised that this response does not create a legal relationship between us nor do I represent you in connection with this or any other matter. (Sorry for the legal disclaimer....). Betty Marion
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