Civil Causes of Action - Duty to Invitees Law & Legal Definition


The owner is not the insurer of the safety of persons on the premises. The duty of care owed by the owner may vary depending on whether the person injured on the premises was an invitee, guest or trespasser. However, some jurisdictions have adopted the rule that an owner or occupier of land is held to a duty of reasonable care under all the circumstances.

Invitees have an expressed or implied invitation to enter a property. Invitees include business guests such as customers to a restaurant or fee paying hunters. Landowners have the highest legal duty to invitees; they must repair or warn invitees of known dangerous conditions or dangers that would be revealed after a reasonable inspection. If you fall on the sidewalk because of ice, fall in a supermarket because of a wet aisle, or fall down a set of stairs without a proper handle or with poor lighting, a personal injury claim may be filed.

Damages that may be recovered include medical expenses, compensation for pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and lost wages. It is not always necessary to show that the property owner had actual notice of the slippery or unsafe condition, 'constructive notice' may create liability when the defendant reasonably should have been aware of the unsafe condition.