What is an Occupier's Duty of Care in a Premises Liability Case?
Premises liability is a legal concept that typically comes into play in personal injury cases where an injury was caused by some type of hazardous or defective condition on somebody’s property. Premises at law can mean not only lands and structures but also water, ships, vessels, trailers, other portable structures designed or used for residents, and so on. In each of these cases, landowners and occupiers of a property have a certain duty of care to individuals on their property.
These considerations can be complex, so when determining the duty of care in Toronto premises liability cases and the role it has in damage recovery, it is important to contact a Toronto premises liability lawyer.
Defining Duty of Care
Not just the property owner but anyone deemed an “occupier,” has a certain duty of care to individuals on their property. An occupier includes anyone who has care or control of the premises and includes a person that permits an activity to occur on the premises. Any occupier will ultimately owe a duty of care. The duty of care owed is the duty take reasonable care to see that anyone entering onto premises is reasonably safe while they are the property.
This imposes on occupiers an affirmative duty to make a property reasonably safe. So a person actually has to take positive steps to satisfy this duty and ensure that a property is reasonably safe.
Ignorance is not an excuse at law. If a property owner is deemed an occupier, has care and control over a property, then under Toronto premises liability law, they will owe a duty of care to individuals entering onto that property. Ignorance will not save a property owner or occupier from that regulation.