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'Sick buildings,' safety concerns and premises liability

Slip and falls are common premises liability incidents that garner a lot of attention because the property manager or businesses involved in the case usually exhibits some form of negligence or recklessness. Usually that negligence or recklessness is shocking. But we bring this up not because of the often-shocking nature of slip and falls, but to note that despite the common nature of slip and falls, they actually aren't the only area of premises liability.

Another common issue that comes up under premises liability is the phenomenon of "sick buildings" -- structures that, for a variety of possible reasons, cause inhabitants or visitors to suffer respiratory problems, headaches and other detrimental medical conditions.

"Sick buildings" can have a number of different structural issues that cause people to get sick. Toxic mold can grow in the walls, mildew can develop over time, and other toxins, chemicals, and solvents can affect inhabitants if they aren't stored properly or used properly. Any or all of these things can define a "sick building" and they can be grounds for a premises liability lawsuit.

There are also security and safety issues that buildings need to take of. For example, what if a building fails to have adequate security when there are repeated incidents of theft or assault? What if a hand railing on a staircase has been loose for years, and when it finally breaks a person suffers an injury?

These too are grounds for a premises liability lawsuit, and the plaintiffs in any of these situations should consult with an experienced attorney.

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