Law Advisor Blog


Advocating for Business Owners Against Premises Liability Lawsuits

Jennifer M. Alexander

Premises liability lawsuits against retailers are being filed more frequently than ever.  These types of lawsuits can be expensive to defend, but even more expensive to lose.  A successful defense requires a thorough investigation, highly focused written and oral discovery, and strong advocacy to expose evidence and understand medical complexities involved with a claimed injury.  As important as extensive preparation, trial experience is required to successfully defend the lawsuit in the courtroom. 

In Maryland, a business owner owes a legal duty to a customer (i.e., someone who is invited to the property for purposes related to the owner’s business) to use reasonable and ordinary care to keep its store safe for customers, and to warn against unreasonable risks of which the customer may not otherwise be aware. This “ordinary care” standard is the highest duty of care found in Maryland law.  The business owner, however, is not an insurer of the customer’s safety simply because the customer has come to the store.  Nor does the business owner have an obligation under the “ordinary care” standard to continually inspect its premises.  If a business owner is found to have acted “reasonably” and in an “ordinary” fashion to keep its store safe for customers from known or knowable dangers, it should prevail on a claim of negligence by a customer. 

Our premises liability trial attorneys have a deep understanding of the law throughout state and federal courts, along with vast experience trying cases in the courtroom.  Our trial attorneys defend local, national, and international retailers and businesses across the Maryland/Washington, D.C. region, as well as throughout the country, in both state and federal courts. 
If you or your business is being sued for negligence, or need aggressive legal defense, please contact one of the premises liability attorneys at McNamee Hosea to assist you in defending the case.