Premises Liability

A claim for premises liability is generally based upon the duty of an owner or occupier of real property to exercise reasonable care to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition. The duty is owed to persons who are lawfully on the property, as opposed to trespassers. To establish a claim, a person generally must show that the owner or occupier knew or should have known of a dangerous condition, and that he or she suffered a personal injury as a result of a failure to remedy the condition or otherwise protect against the danger posed by the condition.

A claim for premises liability generally must be brought within three years of the date on which the claim accrues.

For information about other civil claims recognized in the District of Columbia, click here. For information about how to use this guide, click here.

[Sources: Douglas C. Melcher, Tort Claims and Defenses in the District of Columbia § 13 (2014), and legal authorities cited therein.]