Staples, Ellis + Associates, P.A. Staples, Ellis + Associates, P.A.

Florida Personal Injury Lawyers

Staples, Ellis + Associates, P.A.
Local: 850-696-0314
Toll Free: 888-414-1326
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Are colleges liable after an assault?

You're walking back to your dorm after an evening at the gym, and three people jump out and attack you. Maybe it's a random attack or maybe they're trying to take your wallet. Either way, you find yourself asking one important question in the wake of the incident: Was the school liable?

Your gut may tell you no. School officials can't predict everything and certainly had nothing to do with the attack. Only the attackers themselves are liable.

However, while this can be true, courts have determined that colleges and universities are liable in situations in which the institution was negligent and allowed the attack to happen. The school has to "exercise reasonable care" to keep you safe.

For example, perhaps the school didn't put any street lights near where you were walking, so you had to walk in the dark, making crimes easier to commit. Maybe the school didn't employ any security guards or campus police officers for long enough shifts, so no one was on duty when you were attacked.

These types of oversights might be considered negligence. The attack may not have been predictable, but the school has to know that students are vulnerable. If they clearly did not take proper steps to keep you safe, doing normal and reasonable things to protect you, then you could say they allowed the incident and indirectly contributed to your injuries.

Of course, all cases are different, but the key thing to remember is that you can claim that someone was negligent without having to prove that they actively did anything to harm you. You may still be entitled to compensation.

Source: FIndLaw, "Premises Liability FAQ," accessed Jan. 18, 2017

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Staples, Ellis + Associates, P.A.

Florida Personal Injury Lawyers

Staples, Ellis + Associates, P.A. 201 N. Palafox Street 2nd Floor Pensacola, FL 32502 Toll Free: 888-414-1326 Phone: 850-696-0314 Fax: 850-438-0575 Pensacola Law Office

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