Considering the constant changes in Florida’s economy, more people than ever are finding themselves tenants, whether residential or commercial. Whether you are a tenant or a landlord, it is very important to understand all of your rights and duties, especially the ones that you may not be aware of.
Under Florida law, a landlord owes a duty to their tenant to protect the tenant from reasonably foreseeable criminal conduct. This means that if you have ever been the victim of a crime on property that is owned by your landlord, you may have a claim against them for damages resulting from your injuries for their negligent failure to provide adequate security.
Victim of Landlord Negligence in New Port Richey (or surrounding Areas)? Call (727) 849 – 5353 TODAY
A Plaintiff, someone who is seeking to sue another, in this kind of action has the burden of proving that the landlord had knowledge of prior similar criminal conduct occurring on the premises. What’s interesting is that Florida courts have found the landlord’s duty to ensure a tenant’s safety in common areas of the property and the individual units leased to a residential tenant. Additionally, if you are a commercial tenant, this duty may also include your guests, customers, or employees.
Some of the factors that come into play are whether or not the landlord provided adequate security for the building and whether the landlord was aware that crime was prevalent in that particular area.
However, the biggest factor in negligent security cases involves the issue of whether or not the landlord had reason to know that there was a high likelihood of a criminal event – basically whether a criminal event was “foreseeable”. Several courts in Florida have found that a criminal event is “foreseeable”, meaning the landlord would be held responsible, if the landlord knew of criminal activity that occurred in the surrounding area, even if there have not been any specific criminal incidents on his own property. This drastically increases the scope of a duty that is placed on a landlord and increases the occasions in which he or she may be held liable for a criminal event.
To summarize, if you are a tenant who has been the victim of an attack on your landlord’s property, you may have a claim against your landlord for negligence. Our office is staffed with some of the best litigators in the state who can thoroughly investigate as to whether your landlord should have known an attack was likely to occur. Please give us a call for a free consultation if you believe you may have been the victim of negligent security.
Have you or someone you love been a victim of Landlord Negligence? If so, please call us TODAY at (727) 849-5353 – or visit our “contact us” page – click here