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Negligent Security in Apartment Complexes

The owners and/or managers of apartment complexes in Georgia are responsible for providing security if they have reason to anticipate a criminal act will occur on the property. In most cases, prior criminal activity, such as an assault or robbery in or near an apartment complex, puts the owner on notice that common areas may need additional security measures. If the owner fails to make the complex safer, tenants may seek compensation for injuries related to negligent security.

Keeping Apartment Complexes Safe for Tenants

Georgia law requires apartment complex owners and landlords to be vigilant and protect tenants (and their guests) from foreseeable criminal attacks. This means that if a violent crime has occurred in or near an apartment complex, the property owner has a responsibility to warn its tenants and to make the complex safer. This may include the installation of security measures such as locks, lighting, controlled access gates, perimeter fencing, cameras, and security guards. It can also include maintaining and repairing safety features such as window or door locks on an individual unit.    The goal is to deter and prevent future crime from occurring at the apartment complex.

The fact is many tools exist for apartment complex owners to deter crime, which means many apartment complex crimes are preventable. Simply replacing a light bulb in a hallway could stop a perpetrator from waiting in that hallway for a victim. If the apartment complex owner knew or had reason to know that a lack of maintenance or security could facilitate or contribute to criminal activity, they have a duty to address the issue and protect tenants.  For example, if a tenant made prior repair requests to the landlord regarding apartment locks or other safety features, and the landlord failed to respond properly, liability may rest with the landlord, especially if they were aware of prior criminal activity at the complex.

Holding Apartment Owners Accountable for Negligent Security

Usually a crime victim will only report the incident to law enforcement.  But crime victims may also have a civil claim (or claims) separate from any criminal charges brought against a perpetrator. Many times a chain of events, from a gate left open, to a broken lock, to an absent security guard, culminate in a crime being committed in an apartment building. A successful claim in civil court not only means financial compensation to help you recover from your injuries, but it can help incentivize apartment complexes to take reasonable measures to keep invitees safe while on their premises.

The Legal Team at KWFDM Helps Victims of Negligent Security

If you or a loved one has been the victim of a crime due to negligent security in an apartment complex in Atlanta or somewhere in GA, please contact the legal team at Katz Wright Fleming & Dodson, LLC at 404-460-0101 for you free initial consultation. We will determine if more could have been done to prevent the crime against you, and pursue compensation on your behalf against the complex owner, manager, or other responsible party.

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