As communication technology advances and self-employment opportunities increase, so has the number of people who work from home either part- or full-time. Individuals who own their own business often begin by working out of their home, inviting customers and clients over to showcase their products or provide their service.
But with the convenience of running a business out of their home comes added complications; if patrons are injured on their property, they could be considered liable for negligence.
Home business owners who are self-employed may not understand the risk of injuries or have safety standards in place around their home like big businesses do, so it’s especially important to know what risks are involved when you visit someone’s home to do business.
What to Watch Out for at a Home Business
Self-employed individuals will not usually require their customers or clients to venture beyond a single room in their house, and this helps reduce the chance anyone will be accidentally injured while on their property. However, this also means business owners may be less aware of the safety hazards in other areas of their property that they may bring patrons to under special circumstances.
Whether you visit a single room of a home business or take a tour of their entire property, be careful around the following slip and fall hazards that may be a result of the owner’s negligence.
Some business owners like to show off their property’s natural beauty, and self-employed gardeners may bring clients on a walk to provide examples of work they can do. When you’re outside, pay careful attention to the condition of the lawn; grass can be slippery after a rainstorm or early in the morning.
Also pay attention to crumbling or uneven pavement, whether on the front walk or the driveway, that could cause a fall. Inside the house, watch for trip hazards like carpet ripples, steep staircases, and rugs.
Business owners will likely spend time and effort making their primary hosting room clean, safe, and appealing to customers, but that doesn’t guarantee every other part of their property is equally well maintained.
Spills and Leaks
Unlike restaurants, where spills often occur in areas of major foot traffic, home businesses are less likely to cause slip and fall risks due to spills. Again, in less commonly visited areas of the house, like the garage or bathroom, these risks may increase if the owner hasn’t paid special attention to them.
Poorly Lit Areas
If customers often arrive in the evening, adequate outdoor lighting is essential to keeping them safe outside. Without good light, uneven pavement or other slip and fall hazards go unnoticed and can lead to injuries for which the homeowner may be liable.
How to File a Slip and Fall Claim
In the more personal business transactions that occur between self-employed business owners and their customers, it can be awkward for victims to claim their injury was caused by the owner’s negligence. However, failing to do so can end up unduly burdening the injured person with costly medical bills for an accident that wasn’t entirely their fault.
If you’re not sure whether you’ve been hurt because of a self-employed business owner’s negligence, call Hensley Legal Group. Our personal injury attorneys will help walk you through the necessary components of a slip and fall claim to see if you could receive compensation from the person at fault. Contact us today; your first conversation with us is free.