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Who is liable after a fall on a staircase?

Staircases can be one of the most common places where people fall, especially when using a particular staircase for the first time. While we might be used to using the staircase in our home and be prepared for any of the uneven steps, using a staircase in an unfamiliar place, such as a restaurant or a shopping mall, can be a different matter and can lead to dangerous falls.

This is why premises that welcome guests to use their property must be extra careful to make sure that their staircases and escalators are safe. While people are on their property, the premises has the responsibility to do everything that is reasonably within their power to ensure their guests' safety.

In what ways can staircases be dangerous?

All staircases that are available to public use must be safe. This means that they should be adequately lighted, and where appropriate, signed. For example, a staircase in a dark hall might be difficult to see, and can lead to an injury as a result.

In addition, the premises has the responsibility to make sure that the surfaces of the stairs are even, the distance between each step is even and that the staircase is free from dangerous hazards such as trash or spillages.

If a premises has not done what is reasonable to prevent an injury, they could be liable for negligence and ordered to pay damages. If you have been injured in a fall down the stairs in Illinois, you should take action to learn how you can recover what you are owed.

Source: FindLaw, "Premises Liability FAQ," accessed May 25, 2018

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