Premises Liability

Hold Negligent Property Owners Accountable with Our Experienced Legal Team by Your Side!

Have you ever wondered who’s responsible when you’re injured on someone else’s property in Texas? Understanding premises liability is crucial for anyone stepping onto another’s property, whether it’s a shopping mall, a neighbor’s home, or a public park. Governed by specific Texas statutes, premises liability laws determine the safety obligations property owners owe to their visitors and the rights those injured have to seek justice.

What Does Premises Liability Mean in Texas?

Premises liability refers to the legal responsibility property owners have to ensure their property is safe for visitors. In Texas, this area of law is shaped by several statutes that outline the extent of these obligations and the circumstances under which property owners can be held liable for injuries occurring on their premises.

At its core, premises liability in Texas revolves around the concept of negligence. Property owners are expected to maintain a safe environment for visitors. Failure to do so, whether through neglect of maintenance, inadequate security, or not warning of potential dangers, can lead to liability for any injuries that occur as a result. Key statutes, such as the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, offer guidance on these responsibilities and the criteria for establishing liability in injury cases.

Examples of premises liability cases include:


Slip and fall accidents due to wet floors or uneven surfaces.


Injuries from falling objects or unsafe structures.


Assaults or injuries resulting from inadequate security on the property.


Drowning incidents.


Dog bites.

Each of these situations requires a careful examination of the property owner’s actions or inactions in light of Texas law. For instance, the duty of care—a legal obligation to ensure the safety of visitors—varies depending on the visitor’s status (invitee, licensee, or trespasser), with each category receiving different levels of protection under the law.

What Are the Key Elements of a Premises Liability Claim in Texas?

For a premises liability claim in Texas to be successful, certain legal elements must be established. Understanding these components is essential for anyone looking to pursue such a claim under Texas law.

 Duty of Care: The foundation of a premises liability claim is proving that the property owner owed a duty of care to the injured party. In Texas, the extent of this duty varies based on the status of the visitor—whether they are an invitee, licensee, or trespasser. Property owners owe the highest duty of care to invitees, who are on the property for mutual benefit.

Breach of Duty: The next step is to demonstrate that the property owner breached their duty of care. This breach can occur in various ways, such as failing to repair a known hazard, not providing adequate warnings about potential dangers, or neglecting to maintain the property safely.

Causation: Establishing causation involves showing a direct link between the property owner’s breach of duty and the injury sustained. This means the injury would not have occurred if the property owner had fulfilled their obligation to maintain a safe environment.

Damages: Finally, the injured party must prove they suffered actual damages as a result of the breach. Damages can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses resulting from the injury.

These elements are critical in premises liability cases and are deeply rooted in Texas statutes and case law. For instance, the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code provides guidelines on property owner liabilities and the protections afforded to different types of visitors. By closely examining these legal standards, individuals can better understand the nuances of premises liability claims in Texas.

What Are the Damages That Can Be Claimed in Premises Liability?


Damages in premises liability cases in Texas are intended to compensate the injured party for their losses and injuries. These damages can include:

Medical Expenses

Costs for immediate medical treatment, rehabilitation, and any future medical care related to the injury.

Lost Wages

Compensation for any income lost due to the injury, including future earnings if the injury affects the individual’s ability to work.

Pain and Suffering

Non-economic damages for the physical pain and emotional distress suffered as a result of the injury.

Property Damage

If personal property was damaged in the incident, compensation might cover repair or replacement.

Loss of Consortium

Compensation for the impact of injuries on the relationship between the injured person and their spouse.

The specific damages available can vary based on the details of each case, including the nature of the injury and the impact on the individual’s life.

Who Is Responsible for Premises Liability Claims in Texas?

In Texas, the responsibility for premises liability claims typically falls on property owners or occupiers. This includes individuals, companies, or entities that own, lease, occupy, or control the property where the injury occurred. The level of responsibility, however, varies depending on the legal status of the person injured on the property, categorized into three groups:

Invitees: These are individuals invited onto the property for the mutual benefit of both parties, such as customers in a store. Property owners owe the highest duty of care to invitees, including the responsibility to inspect the property for unknown hazards and to take steps to rectify or warn against them.

Licensees: Licensees are on the property for their own purposes with the owner’s consent, such as social guests. Property owners must warn licensees of any known dangers that the licensee is unlikely to discover on their own.

Trespassers: Even unauthorized visitors have certain protections under Texas law. While the duty of care is significantly lower for trespassers, property owners cannot willfully harm them and must warn of known, concealed dangers in some circumstances.

Understanding who can be held responsible in a premises liability claim is crucial for determining the appropriate course of action following an injury.

How Do Texas Laws Affect Premises Liability Claims?

Texas laws introduce specific considerations that can significantly influence the outcome of premises liability claims. Two key legal concepts that claimants should be aware of are comparative negligence and the statute of limitations.

Comparative Negligence in Texas

Texas follows a “modified comparative negligence” rule, which means that the compensation you can receive in a premises liability case may be reduced if you are found to be partly at fault for your injuries. According to this rule, as long as you are less than 51% responsible for the accident, you can still recover damages. However, your recovery will be decreased by your percentage of fault. This principle encourages a thorough examination of all parties’ actions leading up to the incident.

Statute of Limitations for Premises Liability Claims 

In Texas, there’s a specific timeframe within which you must file a premises liability claim. The Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code sets this period at two years from the date of the injury. Failing to file within this period typically results in losing your right to seek compensation. This statute underscores the importance of acting swiftly to preserve your legal rights following an injury on someone else’s property.

Understanding these Texas-specific laws is crucial for anyone involved in a premises liability claim. They not only frame the legal landscape within which these claims are pursued but also highlight the need for timely and informed action. By familiarizing yourself with these aspects of Texas law, you can better navigate the complexities of your claim and improve your chances of a favorable outcome.

Why Do I Need a Premises Liability Attorney in Texas?

Navigating a premises liability claim in Texas can be a complex and daunting task. The laws governing these claims are intricate, with specific requirements and deadlines that must be met to successfully pursue compensation. Here’s why consulting with a premises liability attorney can be crucial:

Understanding of Legal Requirements: Texas premises liability laws have detailed criteria for what constitutes a valid claim. An attorney with experience in this field can help you understand these legal standards and how they apply to your specific situation.

Identification of Responsible Parties: Determining who is legally responsible in a premises liability case isn’t always straightforward. An experienced attorney can help identify all potentially liable parties, which may include property owners, lessees, or even third-party companies.

Assessment of Damages: Understanding the full extent of your damages—and the compensation you may be entitled to—requires a thorough evaluation. This includes not just immediate medical expenses and lost wages, but also potential long-term impacts on your quality of life and ability to earn.

Negotiation with Insurance Companies: Insurance companies often aim to settle claims for as little as possible. An attorney can negotiate on your behalf, advocating for a settlement that truly reflects the extent of your injuries and losses.

Representation in Court: If a fair settlement cannot be reached, having an attorney to represent your interests in court can be invaluable. They can manage all aspects of the trial process, from filing the lawsuit to presenting evidence and arguing your case.

In essence, a premises liability attorney in Texas serves not only as your legal advocate but also as a crucial source of knowledge and support, aiming to ensure that your rights are protected and you receive the compensation you deserve.

Ready to Protect Your Rights? McKinnon Law Is Here for You

If you or someone you know has been injured on another’s property, the path through Texas premises liability can seem daunting. You don’t have to navigate it alone. McKinnon Law, with our experience in Personal Injury, Business Law, and Real Estate Law, is prepared to support you during this challenging time.

Our legal team offers the knowledgeable guidance and strong representation you need. Whether your situation involves an injury from a slip and fall, a property rights dispute, or requires legal insight, McKinnon Law has the skills to assist. We understand Texas law’s complexities and are committed to advocating for your interests, aiming for the compensation and justice you deserve.

Don’t let uncertainty stop you from getting the help you need. Reach out to McKinnon Law today to set up a consultation. Let our skills in Personal Injury, Business Law, and Real Estate Law work for you, guiding you toward a favorable outcome that protects your rights and your future.

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1776 Yorktown Street, Suite 425
Houston, Texas 77056

(832) 810-3664