Roof collapses can lead to disastrous consequences for individuals residing in homes or persons frequenting commercial buildings such as offices, restaurants, shopping malls, supermarkets, manufacturing facilities, and construction sites. A collapsed roof seldom happens in a gradual manner; it is often a sudden onset and leaves little to no time for a victim to react. Since such accidents occur overhead and feature debris that tumbles onto the head and upper body of individuals, serious injuries may result; at times, these injuries can be fatal. Examples of these injuries include:
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Brain Hemorrhaging
- Neck Fractures
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Traumatic Eye injuries, leading to partial or complete blindness
- Fractured Vertebrae
- Facial Lacerations and Scars
- Skull Fractures
- Broken Noses
- Broken Hands and Arms
- Permanent Disfigurement
- Other Permanent disabilities
- Roof Collapse Fatalities, prompting Wrongful Death Claims
If you have sustained any of the above injuries due to a roof collapse in a private home or a commercial building, contact our premises liability roof collapse attorneys. We will fight for your right to compensation for the injuries you have suffered. Our goal is to make sure our clients are safe and healthy, and we work towards bringing you a settlement that will allow you to have no stress over medical bills or other accrued debts. Here at Downtown L.A. Law Group are ready to provide you with the guidance that you need to pursue your injury claim and help you recover the compensation that you are owed. Do not hesitate to contact the experts at our law firm as soon as possible.
What Causes a Ceiling Or Roof to Collapse
Common causes of roof collapses are as follows:
- Pile up of Snow: Failure to remove accumulated snow or ice from roof, LEADING TO LARGE BUILDUP OF WEIGHT
- Excess Water FROM RAINSTORMS, THUNDERSTORMS, OR HURRICANES
- High Winds FROM STORMS OR TORNADOES
- Building Code Violations, WHEREIN A ROOF WAS IMPROPERLY CONSTRUCTED
- Failure to maintain property BY PROPERTY OWNERS
- Leaking Pipes on the roof, CAUSING WATER AND LIQUID TO DAMAGE THE ROOF AND POTENTIALLY WEAKEN THE STRUCTURE
- Construction modifications, SUCH AS RAISING THE ROOF OR INSTALLING A SKYLIGHT
- Placement of excess weight on the roof, SUCH AS WITH LIGHTS OR STORED MATERIALS
- Attachment of excessive load or collateral load, OR USING THE ROOF TO ANCHOR MATERIALS THAT REST ON THE GROUND
- Placement of Air-conditioning system without proper roof accommodations BY A LICENSED CONSTRUCTION WORKER OR AIR-CONDITIONING INSTALLATION EXPERT
- Building fires, CAUSING THE STRUCTURE TO WEAKEN
Premise Liability: Property Owner Liability for your Roof Collapse Injuries
Landowners’ or land possessors’ liabilities vary greatly depending upon the classification of the victim. Generally, all visitors fall into one of three categories:
- Invitee: An invitee is owed the highest duty of care. This person consists of any individual who is either expressly or impliedly invited to another person’s premises for their mutual benefits. These individuals often consist of consumers for businesses who enter premises with the intention of spending money and making purchases to acquire goods, while the property owner receives their money.
- Trespasser: A trespasser can be described as a person who is not legally allowed to be present on the property. They are often awarded the lowest level of care; however, if the landowner is aware of trespassers, he must take certain steps to not intentionally harm them. Trespassers can have the law on their sides in numerous situations if the property owner does not take care of his property.
- Licensee: Any individual who enters the premises at the owner or possessor’s consent for a nonbusiness or commercial purpose. The most common example is a social guest. In order to recover as a licensee, a victim must establish (all three):
1. The owner or possessor knew or should have known of the dangerous condition, and should have known that it created an unreasonable risk of harm, and likewise should have known that the plaintiff would fail to discover the dangerous condition.
2. The owner or possessor did not make the condition safe or failed to warn the licensee of the condition.
3. The licensee did not know of the dangerous condition or of the risks involved.
Understanding Liability in Other Situations
Roof collapse incidents are common in specific areas, including mobile home parks, construction sites, vacation rentals (like AIRBNB), etc. In these situations, liability can vary significantly. Consider the following points discussed below:
Construction site incidents: In roof collapse incidents that occur at construction sites, liability can actually fall onto the contractor. This is because contractors have a duty to ensure that the construction site is safe enough for construction workers to do their work without any major risks.
Mobile home park incidents: In roof collapse incidents that occur at mobile home parks, liability can actually fall both on the property owner and on the mobile home park owner depending on the situation. In some cases, the property owner completely owns the mobile home and only rents the space; therefore, the property owner is fully responsible for keeping their mobile home safe. In other cases, the mobile home park owner actually owns the mobile homes and rents them out; therefore, the park owner would be responsible for keeping the mobile home safe. Mobile home park liability can vary, so it’s best to speak with a lawyer.
Camping incidents: Camping incidents can consist of collapsed roofs in trailers, ranch houses, rented tents or tipis, etc. If the tent collapse or roof collapse involves anything that is rented, then the camping ground owners would be liable. In some cases, product manufacturers could also be liable for camp ground incidents, including tent collapse incidents.
AirBnb incidents: In these incidents, liability can be a little confusing. Of course, property owners can be liable for any incidents that occur on the premises (based on premise liability). However, property owners that host through AirBnb are protected by the company’s insurance; therefore, Airbnb could actually be liable for roof collapse incidents that occur at these properties.
Restaurant incidents: restaurant incidents can occur essentially at any time. Restaurant owners might focus on making their restaurants look nice to guests, but they might ignore important maintenance. These incidents can occur at any time as the roof/ceiling can collapse with no warning whatsoever. Of course, the restaurant owner could be liable for any injuries resulting from the incident.
Store incidents: a roof or ceiling collapse in any store can be very dangerous for anyone inside. Store owners are typically liable for any harm resulting from incidents on their store premises. If the incident occurs in a store that is leased, then the actual property owner would be liable.
Shopping mall incidents: shopping malls, both indoor and outdoor, are often not properly maintained. This can increase the risk of incidents like roof and ceiling collapses. When these incidents occur at shopping malls, the owner of the shopping mall will be liable.
School incidents: schools are supposed to safe for students and staff. Unfortunately, many schools are in disrepair. When roof collapse and ceiling collapse incidents occur in schools, the school district could be liable.
For any other questions surrounding liability for roof collapse incidents, do not hesitate to seek legal assistance with the experts at our law firm immediately. Our lawyers are ready to guide you every step of the way.
Filing a Government Claim against a Public School
After a school roof or ceiling collapse incident, victims could have grounds to file a lawsuit for the harm that they suffered. Victims can file a school roof or ceiling collapse cases against the school district. School districts are government entities; therefore, claimants will actually have to file a government claim against the public school. Government claims are different than regular personal injury claims because they are subject to shorter timelines. Claimants must first file an administrative claim directly with the government agency (the school district) within six months of the date of the incident. The agency will then have forty-five days to respond. If the agency denied your claim within this period, you will have six months from the date of denial to file your claim. If the agency does not respond to your initial claim, then you will have two years to file your lawsuit.
If the incident occurred at a public school, you could file a government claim against the school district. Similarly, if the incident occurred at any government-owned property, then you could also file a government claim.
For more information about filing your government claim, do not hesitate to contact the experts at our law firm immediately.
YOUR POTENTIAL EARNINGS
Our experienced lawyers with expertise in premises liability claims can help you earn a sizeable settlement for your injuries stemming from a collapsed roof. You should not have to worry about bills when you are recovering from injuries; let our attorneys work to bring you the compensation you deserve. We can help you receive coverage for: Medical Bills, including surgery fees, hospitalization costs, medication and refills, physical therapy, and future medical treatments. Lost Wages, which were lost when you were forced to stay out of work due to your injury.
Further, we can help you earn future reimbursement for wages that you will lose because of any ongoing medical procedures that will prevent you from working. Property Damage, which can apply to any belongings you had that were damaged, broken, or lost during the roof collapse accident. Items such as cell phones, laptops, and jewelry can have their monetary values reimbursed. Pain and Suffering, which includes any emotional damage you suffered because of the accident. You may suffer from psychological scarring, fear, PTSD, anxiety, and mental problems after a roof collapses over your head.
Do not hesitate to contact our lawyers for more information on the potential earning areas of your roof collapse claim. One of our expert legal team members will be able to give you the necessary details you need to move forward with filing a claim.
Average Case Value
How much is your roof collapse injury claim worth? How much can you be eligible to recover? In the section above, we covered what you could recover (i.e., compensation for medical costs, lost pay, pain and suffering, etc.); however, you might have many questions about how much you could potentially recovery if your lawsuit is successful.
So, how much could you recover? What is the average value of roof collapse injury cases? Case values are strictly based on the details surrounding the incident – including the types of injuries sustained, the extent of the treatment needed, the time that the victim is unable to work, etc. Although many injured parties and their families reach out to us with questions about average case values, we always remain clear about the fact that average values can be misleading because claims are so different.
In general, we can give rough estimates based on the severity of the injuries resulting from the accident. Normally, cases with more severe injuries will always be worth more than cases with only minor injuries (as more severe injuries are likely to result in expensive medical bills, a longer recovery time, more lost income, and more pain and suffering, for example). Cases with only minor injuries can be worth $150,000 or less. Cases with more moderate injuries can be worth up to $350,000. Cases with severe injuries can be worth $750,000 or even more. Some cases even reach and surpass the million-dollar mark.
For more information about the possible value of your claim and what you could be eligible to recover if your claim is successful, do not hesitate to contact the experts at our law firm immediately.
How Long Does It Take to Settle These Cases?
How long does it take to settle a roof collapse lawsuit? The time that it takes to settle any injury lawsuit can vary significantly. Here at our law firm, we aim to settle injury claims, including roof collapse claims, within a reasonable time. Under ideal conditions, we can settle these claims within six to eight months. However, conditions are not always ideal. Many issues, including issues obtaining medical records, issues with the insurance company, issues with the insurance company involved, issues with the clients, and issues with the lawyer handling the case, can all result in the settlement process taking longer. Typically, minor to moderate issues can result in the settlement process taking up to eighteen months. Severe issues can result in the settlement process taking up to twenty-four months (two years) to settle. Here at our law firm, we will always work to settle your claim as quickly and effectively as possible.
Why Do Some Law Firms Take Such a Long Time to Settle These Cases?
Although some cases can take long to settle because of the details of the case, some cases can actually take long to settle because of the incompetence of the legal team handling the case. Many lawyers take on claims even when they know that they do not have the experience necessary to successfully handle the claim. Others take on claims even if they are already overloaded with cases, and they can’t handle them effectively.
If your current lawyer is taking way too long to settle your roof collapse accident claim, you should consider switching representation. Many law firms offer free second opinions for this exact reason.
Free Second Opinions
Here at our law firm, we are proud to offer free second opinions. If you are unhappy with the way that your current lawyer is handling your roof collapse, you should contact us immediately for a free second opinion from a lawyer with expertise in settling roof and ceiling collapse cases. Our lawyers will be available to answer all your question and essentially provide you with all the information that you need to really understand what is going on with your case. If you decide to switch lawyers, our experts can help you with the process – our lawyers will notify your current attorney and take care of the technical aspects of the switch.
Our ceiling collapse lawyers are here to help you receive compensation for your loss
Our aggressive and tenacious legal team will keep on the offensive until they make sure you have been fully compensated for your injuries and vindicated for your loss. We will go to trial and take on liable parties and their insurance carriers so that your rights are protected. We will take care of every legal detail and make sure you achieve the highest compensation possible for your loss; in the meantime, concentrate on the most important part of this process – your recovery. You should not be expected to stress over medical bills and insurance claims while recovering from injuries.
Let our team of expert lawyers work for you to bring you a fair settlement, and you will have all the time you need to get back on your feet. Contact the Downtown LA Law firm today if you have suffered an injury at (855)385-2529 to receive a free case evaluation today! One of our top attorneys will be available to take your call, no matter what time it is. You can ask any questions you like about the legal process, your case, and what kind of action to take after a roof collapse injury. Our empathetic attorneys will listen to your questions and answer them to the best of their abilities.
With Downtown LA Law Firm, you can rest assured that you are receiving the most attentive care possible. Further, if you select us for legal representation, you are given a zero fee guarantee on your case. This promises that you will pay no out of pocket expenses for our legal services – your savings will remain untouched throughout the whole process. If we lose your case, you do not owe us a cent; however, even if we win, our payment will come from the settlement we’ve earned for you, not from your bank account. We do this because we believe it is important to preserve our clients’ financial standings, and because we feel that no person should be refused legal services merely because he does not have the money to pay a lawyer.
Remember: It is crucial to act quickly after you’ve been injured to report any accident-injury before any limitations can lower or extinguish your rightful claim. In many cases, there is only a time limit of two years from the date of the injury to file a claim. The quicker you act, the more likely it is to earn a settlement, as all the evidence will be fresh and ready to present to the insurance agency or to the court. Call us at Downtown LA Law Firm for a free consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers regarding your injuries from a roof collapse.