broken glass of a security camera lens

Negligent Security & Personal Attacks 

The Winter Law Group Oct. 17, 2022

Security should never be taken for granted, and our premises liability attorney at the Winter Law Group knows it better than anyone else. Adequate security plays a critical role in keeping visitors and patrons safe from foreseeable harm. When property owners fail to provide adequate security, their visitors or patrons may get hurt. When this happens, the injured party may be able to sue the owner of the property for negligent security.  

At the Winter Law Group, our premises liability attorney in Fresno, California, can investigate your case and help you determine whether you have a valid negligent security claim against the owner of the property where you or your loved one was hurt. The Winter Law Group serves injured victims throughout Madera, Merced, and Fresno counties.  

Negligent Security 

Premises liability cases, including those involving claims of negligent security, can be complex. Proving that the property where you were injured had inadequate security measures may be challenging. That is why you may need the assistance of an experienced attorney to help you build a strong case. 

A negligent security case can be brought against a property owner when a person (visitor or patron) sustains a foreseeable injury due to inadequate security measures. Typically, negligent security claims arise when a victim suffers battery, assault, robbery, rape, or wrongful death.  

A victim or a victim’s family members could potentially bring a lawsuit against the owner or manager of the property and/or a security firm to recover compensation. Examples of negligent security measures include but are not limited to: 

  • Lack of security guards 

  • Unqualified security guards 

  • Broken gates, fences, doors, or windows 

  • Missing locks on doors 

  • Lack of security cameras or malfunctioning cameras 

  • Lack of alarm systems or malfunctioning alarm systems 

  • Inadequate lighting 

  • Blocked emergency exits 

A knowledgeable personal injury attorney can investigate your case and determine whether there was negligent security leading to an attack.  

What Must the Plaintiff Prove?  

The following criteria must be established to bring a successful negligent security claim: 

  1. The defendant owns, leases, or occupies the premises where the plaintiff was injured;  

  1. The defendant was negligent in keeping the plaintiff safe; and 

  1. The defendant’s negligence was a direct or proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injury.  

For example, if you are attacked by someone who should not have had access, you may be able to sue a liable party if you can prove that they failed to provide adequate entrance security and door locks.  

Defining “Adequate Security”  

Determining what constitutes “adequate security” depends on the specific property. Generally, those who own, manage, lease, and occupy residential or commercial properties must make every reasonable effort to keep visitors and patrons safe. Examples of adequate security include: 

  • Functioning alarm systems 

  • Functioning security cameras that record and store footage 

  • A sufficient number of qualified security guards 

  • Proper security awareness training for employees 

  • Adequate lighting conditions 

  • Functioning door and window locks  

Determining whether security is inadequate can be challenging without understanding the laws and regulations governing adequate security measures for specific property types.  

Who Is Liable? 

Liability for failure to provide adequate security is not limited to any particular residential or commercial property. Depending on the location where the incident occurred, the victim may pursue a negligent security claim against a: 

  • Shopping mall 

  • Retail store 

  • Nightclub 

  • Restaurant or bar 

  • Hotel or motel 

  • Apartment building 

  • Office building 

  • Sports venue 

  • Concert venue 

  • Care facilities such as hospitals or nursing homes 

  • School, college, or university 

  • Property owned by the government 

Typically, the owner of the property is responsible for providing adequate security measures and can be held accountable for injuries suffered by visitors or patrons as a result of negligent security. However, the property owner may not be liable if the property is leased or another entity is responsible for the property’s upkeep and security. 

Legal Advocacy When You Need It Most  

If you or a loved one suffered an attack on someone else’s property, you might be able to pursue a negligent security claim against liable parties. A premises liability attorney at the Winter Law Group can evaluate your potential negligent security case and determine whether you are eligible for compensation. Contact our office in Fresno, California, today to receive a free consultation.