Earlier this month, an appellate court issued an opinion in a personal injury case involving the aggressive acts of a third party, discussing how such acts can play into a landowner’s liability to its visitors. The case is important for Florida car accident victims to understand because it discusses the concept of foreseeability, which comes into play in many personal injury cases.
The Facts of the Case
The defendant owned a parking lot that he had designed and leased to a food truck. The food truck was open each day, and it was most crowded on the weekends. On a weekend evening, the plaintiff hoped to visit the food truck. As the plaintiff pulled into the lot, however, he realized that it was very crowded and that he would have a difficult time finding a place to park, so he decided to back out and find another place to park.
As the plaintiff was backing out of the lot, he bumped into another vehicle that was pulling into the lot. The driver of that car got very angry, despite the plaintiff’s apology and offer to exchange insurance and vehicle information. The other driver then got into his own car, put it in reverse, and quickly backed out of the lot. However, in so doing, the other driver ran over the plaintiff, who was standing behind the car. The plaintiff was seriously injured as a result and filed a personal injury lawsuit against the owner of the parking lot.
The Parking Lot Owner Did Not Owe the Plaintiff a Duty of Care
The court rejected the plaintiff’s case, finding that the defendant did not owe the plaintiff a duty of care. The court explained that a landowner only has a duty to protect visitors from foreseeable injuries. And while a car running over a pedestrian certainly is foreseeable, the court held, the manner in which this accident arose was not foreseeable.
The court explained that there must be some link between the defendant’s alleged negligence and the accident causing the plaintiff’s injuries. Here, the defendant was only responsible for the creation, leasing, and operation of the lot. He was not in charge of security. The court then went on to explain that the defendant’s planning, creation, and leasing of the lot had nothing to do with the aggressive and unusual acts of the other driver. Thus, the court held that liability was not appropriate in this case because the defendant owed no duty to the plaintiff.
Have You Been Injured in a Parking Lot Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Florida car accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation through a personal injury lawsuit. The dedicated injury attorneys at the law firm of Friedman, Rodman & Frank have extensive experience representing victims and their families in a wide range of cases, including Florida parking lot accidents. To learn more about what you need to do to preserve your rights, call 877-448-8585 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney at Friedman, Rodman & Frank.
More Blog Posts:
Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress Claims in Florida, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published March 21, 2017.
Additur and Remittur: A Judge’s Ability to Adjust a Jury’s Verdict in Florida, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published March 5, 2018.