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Types of Visitors in Premises Liability Claims


Premises liability is an area of personal injury law that holds property owners liable when someone becomes hurt on their premises. Property owners have a legal obligation to guests and they must regularly inspect their premises and correct hazardous conditions. Still, the law in South Carolina separates visitors into four different categories. Property owners owe different types of visitors a different duty of care. Below, our Daniel Island premises liability lawyer outlines the different types of visitors under the law, and the duty property owners owe them.

Business Invitees 

Every time a business opens its doors, it is essentially inviting customers onto the property during business hours. When businesses invite customers onto the property, they owe them the highest duty of care to keep them safe. Companies must ensure they prevent all avoidable and foreseeable injuries to customers. Still, there are limitations to the duty they owe.

For example, if a spill occurred in a grocery store, staff members must clean it in a reasonable amount of time. If someone slipped on the spill immediately, the grocery store likely would not be liable. On the other hand, if the spill stayed in place for hours and someone became hurt, that could make the business liable because they had a reasonable amount of time to clean it up.


Licensees are private guests to an individual’s home. Property owners must repair any dangerous conditions on their premises and warn guests of any hazards. Property owners do not owe the high duty of care to licensees that they owe business invitees, which can make filing a claim in these situations more difficult.


The law recognizes that children cannot be held responsible in the same manner as adults. Property owners must take reasonable measures to ensure guests and trespassers who are children are protected from harm. For example, property owners must make sure trespassing children are not harmed by dangerous conditions on a property, such as a swimming pool. This is known as the attractive nuisance doctrine. Still, when children are of a certain age or maturity, or they have a history of trespassing in certain areas, a court may still assign them some blame if they are injured on someone else’s property.


Property owners generally do not owe trespassers any duty of care to keep them safe. Still, property owners cannot intentionally harm trespassers, unless they must do so to protect themselves or their property. Even then, property owners can only use the degree of force that is necessary for protection.

Our Premises Liability Lawyer in Daniel Island Can Help with Your Case 

If you or someone you love has been hurt on someone else’s property, it is important to speak to a Mt. Pleasant premises liability lawyer about your legal options. At Fuller Law Firm, our experienced attorney can outline what they are and help you obtain the full and fair settlement you deserve. Call us now at 843-277-0013 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation and to learn more.


scstatehouse.gov/sess124_2021-2022/bills/3291.htm#:~:text=Notice of trespassing, purple paint&text=(A) Every entry upon the,not more than thirty days.

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