It is common for the surfaces of streets, sidewalks, and parking lots to be irregular. It is not the duty of the landowner who has custody or control of these areas to eliminate all variations in elevations existing along the countless cracks, seams, joints and curbs. These surfaces are not required to be smooth and lacking in deviations. Such a strenuous requirement would be impossible to meet.
A landowner or person having custody or control of a street, sidewalk or parking lot will only be held liable for those defects which present an unreasonable risk of harm. Likewise, a state or public entity is also obligated to maintain its sidewalks in a reasonably safe condition.
When an action is commenced against a public entity for damages resulting from a defective roadway, or sidewalk, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant owned the land or had custody of it, that it was defective in that it created an unreasonable risk of harm to others, and that the defendant had actual or constructive (should have known) knowledge of the defect or risk of harm and failed to take corrective action within a reasonable time.
If you have suffered an injury due to a defective sidewalk – Don’t delay – Call Clay! Our personal injury attorneys can provide an initial consultation FREE of charge to you regardless of whether you retain our services.