When individuals go to a North Carolina business, they expect a safe environment. If inadequate security results in injuries or fatalities, the business or property owner may be liable. Persons injured in criminal attacks or slip and fall incidents often file claims for a breach of the duty of care. A settlement might help cover lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering.
North Carolina premises liability law covers negligent security claims. The National Law Review describes the circumstances under which property owners must provide a reasonable duty of care to those on the premises. This typically includes providing adequate security measures for lawful visitors.
Types of security
The security measures a property owner uses depend on various factors, such as the type of location or business and the threat level. Basic security measures typically include the following:
- Adequate lighting
- Proper building access controls
- Monitored security cameras
- Alarm systems
- Controlled gates and fences
Hotels, motels and apartment buildings often use particular lock and key controls. Financial institutions and retail locations have panic buttons and patrolling, visible security guards. If a location does not have appropriate security, the owner may be liable if an injury occurs.
Types of crime
The foreseeability of a type of crime is an essential factor in negligent security cases. The property and location determine the security measures deemed appropriate. Factors that establish foreseeability include the following:
- History of crime in the area and on the property
- A recent crime spike in the area
- A high-crime area location
- Direct threats
- Known risks (e.g., disgruntled ex-employee or customer)
North Carolina follows the doctrine of Contributory Negligence. According to the International Risk Management Institute, if the injured party is even partially responsible for the situation, they cannot recover damages.
Whether the injury occurred at an ATM, professional building or warehouse, the expectation of safety remains. Understanding the requirements for a claim is essential for obtaining a fair settlement.