Negligent Security


Negligent security claims can take many different forms. Different types of negligent security claims include, but are not limited to: a shooting, assault, sexual assault, robbery, or murder. Many negligent security claims arise when a victim is harmed while in public. Other types of negligent security can occur due to a security breach. If you were injured by a third party while in public, you may have a claim for negligent security against the property owner or business that owns the located where your were injured. Unfortunately, criminal attacks and accidents can occur when you least expect it. Unfortunately, some business owners are not surprised when you are injured, because some victims have been injured before in similar ways. Some businesses and property owners fail to fix security features to save money. Instead, the owner has a duty to ensure that it has adequate security in place to protect its patrons and guests. 

From a business owner’s perspective, cutting corners can save short term money. Unfortunately, a lack in security may lead to your accidents and/or injured victims. Some example of how businesses cut corners include, but are not limited to: failure to repair a broken street light, failure to repair a door lock, inoperable closed circuit camera, inoperable security and/or alarm. Disgustingly, the property where your injuries occurred may be a business where previous victims have been injured due to similar circumstances. Therefore, if the business has previously experienced a similar crime and failed to hire security, and then you are injured in a similar manner, if an attorney can prove the business owner had a duty to prevent your harm, you may be entitled to significant compensation.

Businesses Must Provide Security

Citizens should not have to protect themselves in a public place. Florida law requires property owners and business owners to maintain security to keep consumers safe. Some common places where crimes and accidents occur, include, but are not limited to: apartment complexes, shopping malls, parks, concerts, office buildings, universities, parking garages, restaurants, bars, sporting events, or any other public place.

Commercial Establishment

Always consider these questions after your accident and injury:

    • Were you injured in an area that is known for criminal activity?
    • Was the lighting adequate where the crime occurred?
    • Were there adequate locks on the doors?
    • Did the establishment have an operational surveillance system?
    • Did private security guards actively patrol the area?

Even if the establishment has security, was the security in all areas? Conversely, was there adequate lighting in parking lots and common areas? Indeed, think about your circumstances. As a result, this evidence and questioning will help assist your lawyer with investigating your case.

Where Can Negligent Security Occur?

Apartment Complex

    • Apartment Buildings
    • Condominium Buildings
    • Common Areas
    • Pool Areas
    • Gym Areas
    • Common Area Bathrooms
    • Parking Lots
    • Townhomes

College and Universities

    • College campus
    • University housing
    • Dorm rooms
    • Fraternity party
    • Sorority party
    • On-Campus

Entertainment Venue

    • Concert Venue
    • Amusement Parks
    • Sporting Arena
    • Professional Sporting Event
    • Mall

Financial Institutions

    • Banks
    • Credit Unions
    • Savings Banks

Hospitals and Nurning Homes

    • Hospital
    • Emergency Room
    • Primary Care Physician
    • Physical Therapy
    • Nursing Homes
    • Senior Care Facility
    • Rehab Facility

Hotels and Motels

    • Airbnb
    • VRBO
    • Hotels
    • Hostels
    • Extended Stays
    • Motels

Office Buildings

    • Commercial Office Building
    • Business
    • Commercial Space
    • Business Bathroom


    • Public Pools
    • Parking Garages
    • Public Transportation Stations
    • Public Park
    • Storage facility
    • Church

Restaurants and Bars

    • Restaurants
    • Taverns
    • Bars
    • Gentleman’s Club
    • Nightclubs

Adequate Security

Property owners and landlords are liable owe a duty to invitees, licensees, and in some instances trespassers, and if any of the previously mentioned become injured due to the property owner or landlord inadequate security, you may be able to recover damages. Injuries caused by negligent security can cause you to incur expensive medical bills. As a negligent security victim, you may experience a significant loss of income, loss of companionship for a loved one, permanent injuries, future medical bills, and the inability to earn money.

Business Owner And Landlord Failures

Landlord Liability

    • Improper security gates
    • Inadequate lighting
    • Inadequate locks on common areas (pool, gym, lounge, movie theater, etc.)
    • Inoperable cameras
    • Darkened parking lots

Negligent Hiring

    • Negligent hiring of employees, staff, or third parties.

No Security

    • Lack of adequate security with a prior history of criminal activity
    • Lack of proper security hardware

Previous Attacks

    • No Security
    • Previous attacks and no attempts to improve safety
    • Security patrols not on duty when needed

Unauthorized Personnel

    • Duplicate keys given to unauthorized tenants or personnel
    • Forced entry

Florida Negligent Security Laws

In Florida, in addition to premises liability law, there are statutes that specifically address negligent security.  Florida’s statutes serve to protect property owners, by creating a presumption that property owners and business owners who take specific security steps are not responsible for third-party criminal attacks.  The relevant statutes for Florida negligent security claims are Florida Statutes §§ 812.173 and 812.174.  In these statutes, property owners may be able to avoid liability if the owner has a security camera system, uses a drop safe, and has a notice that the cash register contains less than $50.  Another thing that these laws may require is a well-lit parking lot.  However, the presumption may be rebuttable.  Part of it depends on what type of violence you experienced and whether the property owner was aware of that risk and took reasonable steps to abate the risk.

Florida law requires business and property owners to provide safety for their customers, guests, and visitors. Generally, insurance policies do not allow for the criminal activity of third person. However, Florida law protects patrons from forseeable criminal acts. Moreover, a business owner is liable if the business owner could have taken reasonable and inexpensive measures to prevent the attack. Furthermore, criminal attacks involving knives, guns, deadly weapons, rape, sexual assault, robbery, and other violence are types of criminal activity that may lead a business owner to be liable for third party crimes.

What To Do If You Are A Victim Of Negligent Security


  1. Call the police if you have been the victim of a crime.
  2. If you are able to, collect evidence (take photographs of your injuries, take photographs of the accident scene, write down the contact information for any eye witnesses, etc.).
  3. Seek immediate medical attention.
  4. Call a Negligent Security Attorney.

Frequently Asked Questions

What can hiring an attorney do?

An attorney can investigate whether the business owner could have reasonably and affordably provided a security measure and if the business owner failed to implement this security measure, the owner may be liable for your injuries. For example, if a property owner is aware that their property has a security problem (i.e. threats within an apartment complex) and the property owner fails to secure its premises, the property owner may be held liable for some injuries caused by a third party.

How is negligent security different from other personal injury cases?

Negligent security cases require a third-party.  Generally, the third-party commits a crime or another violent act. Additionally, a victim must establish that the crime would not have occurred if the landlord or property owner had provided adequate security.

Why should you sue the property owner instead of the third-party?

This is a great question. It is also a common question. There are several answers.  Generally, it is not necessary to pursue one party over another. Indeed, you can pursue a lawsuit solely against a property owner. Sometimes, you may not be able to identify the person that harmed you.  Also, if the third party is convicted of a crime, your civil judgment may be uncollectible. One of the purposes of a civil lawsuit is to recover compensation. As a result, the property owner may be the best party to sue because it may have insurance that will cover your injuries.

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