To what extent is your landlord responsible for your safety in the case of a slip-and-fall? Oshawa lawyers at Kelly Greenway Bruce have helped countless people who have been seriously injured on a rented property. You may be entitled to compensation if your landlord fails to take reasonable steps to keep the property safe.
Landlord liability for personal injury on rental property
In Ontario, the Occupiers’ Liability Act is the law that sets out the responsibility to maintain premises and ensure that the property is reasonably safe for those who use it. The Occupiers’ Liability Act states that the "occupier" of premises has a legal duty to keep those premises safe and free of hazards. The law confirms that a landlord is an "occupier" who is responsible for the maintenance or repair of rented premises. A landlord’s responsibility to keep rental property safe extends to the tenants who live at the property and to people who visit.
To what extent is your landlord responsible for the condition of the rented property?
There are many circumstances under which you may be entitled to compensation if you are hurt on a rental property. To be entitled to compensation, you must show that the landlord is responsible for your injuries because of something they did or failed to do to keep the property safe and hazard-free.
Common claims involve the landlord neglecting to repair damages, failing to warn of a hazard, or failing to inspect or maintain the property, so it is free of dangerous conditions. Some of the conditions that may give rise to a claim for personal injury damages against a landlord are:
Poor lighting (for example, an unlit stairwell or poorly lit entrance)
Damaged stairs (missing handrails, broken steps), uneven surfaces and tripping hazards
Unsafe balconies or railings
Wet, dirty, or slippery floors with no weather mats or anti-slip protection
Snow-covered or icy sidewalks, stairs, parking lots, or driveways
It is important to emphasize that the fact you were injured on rented property is not enough on its own to make your landlord liable. To win your personal injury claim, you must prove that the landlord failed to act as a reasonably prudent person would have acted under similar circumstances and that the landlord’s failure was the cause of your injuries.
The law in this area is complex, so it is a good idea to reach out for advice on how to prove your claim as a slip-and-fall lawyer. We would be pleased to answer any questions you may have regarding your right to claim compensation. Connect with us for a free case evaluation.
How long do you have to bring a slip-and-fall claim?
The general rule in Ontario is that you have two years from the date of injury to bring a slip-and-fall claim. If you don’t bring your claim in that 2-year window, it may be "statute barred," which means you are barred from bringing your lawsuit.
There is a major exception to the general rule to be aware of, as it may impact your ability to bring a slip-and-fall claim. Ontario’s Occupiers’ Liability Act was amended on January 29, 2021, to impose a shorter deadline if you were injured due to snow or ice (e.g. you slipped and fell because your landlord failed to properly sand or salt exterior surfaces at the rental property).
Ontario law now requires that you give written notice to your landlord within 60 days of the date of the injury if you were injured due to snow or ice. The notice must be sent to the landlord or to the independent contractor employed by the landlord to remove snow or ice on the premises during the relevant period in which the injury occurred.
There are only two exceptions to the requirement to provide 60-day notice: if the slip-and-fall caused death or if the judge is satisfied that there is a reasonable excuse for the wait and the defendant is not prejudiced by the delay.
The new, shorter notice period may be a significant barrier to securing compensation. You should seek legal advice without delay.
Connect with us today if you have been hurt in a slip-and-fall
At Kelly Greenway Bruce we ensure that your legal rights are preserved and that you get fair compensation for pain and suffering, wage loss, medical bills, and more.
It’s important to connect with our slip-and-fall lawyers in Oshawa or Lindsay immediately after receiving the necessary medical attention. Failure to meet the new strict slip-and-fall deadlines can be fatal to your personal injury claim. Contact our dedicated team of slip-and-fall lawyers for a free initial consultation today.