Slip, Trip, and Fall Accidents: Who Do I Sue?
Slip, trip, and fall accidents are more common than you might imagine, happening in stores, restaurants, and other businesses, and even on city sidewalks. In most cases, these accidents aren’t the fault of the victim, because the law requires buildings, businesses, walkways, and parking lots be maintained for safety.
Known as premises liability, if you have been injured in a slip, trip, and fall accident due to someone else’s negligence of their property could mean you are entitled to sue for compensation to cover lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering.
Steps to Take if You Have Been Injured in a Slip, Trip, and Fall Accident
If you have been injured in a slip, trip, and fall accident, you’ll want to take these steps to ensure you get the help and the compensation you deserve.
- Get Medical Care – First and foremost, getting the medical care you need following a slip, trip, and fall accident is crucial. Not only will you get the care and treatment you need, but also your physician can fully document your injuries. Your medical records will be crucial evidence in your case should you seek compensation.
- Report Your Slip, Trip, and Fall Accident – When a slip, trip, and fall accident occurs – in a store, restaurant, business, sidewalk, parking lot, or home – you should report it immediately to the manager, owner, or landlord. The manager, owner, or landlord should document the accident in a written report and provide you with a copy.
- Collect and Document Crucial Information – If others witnessed your slip, trip, and fall accident, get their names and contact information as potential witnesses should you pursue a legal claim. Take pictures of the location, making sure to document the conditions which contributed to your accident. Write out your account of the accident – what you were doing, how you fell, time, date, and any other pertinent information. Keep the shoes and clothes you were wearing at the time of the accident stored in a safe location.
- Limit Communication – Try to remain calm and don’t place blame or accept any blame. Limit your comments to the business manager or owner. Refrain from posting details of your slip, trip, and fall accident on social media. Speak to your lawyer first, before giving a statement to the involved insurance company.
- Call an Experienced Lawyer – Victims of slip, trip, and fall accidents often fail to realize how complex their incident may become. For this reason, you should call on an experienced Slip, Trip, and Fall Lawyer who has the knowledge to guide you in getting the compensation you deserve.
Establishing the Property Owners Liability for Your Slip, Trip, and Fall Accident and Pursuing Your Case
The owner or manager of the property where your slip, trip, and fall accident occurred is responsible for keeping that property safe for all. The level of responsibility is dependent on whether you were supposed to be on the property, i.e. you were a customer, employee, or guest versus you were someone who wandered onto their property for another reason. Either way, the property owner or manager holds some degree of responsibility to keep the property safe. Essentially, an unsafe condition or obstacle which causes the slip trip/fall, would likely make the property owner liable for any injuries that happen as a result.
When you are injured in a slip, trip, and fall incident, you should contact an experienced lawyer to review your case. They will be able to help you determine if you have a claim by investigating and gathering evidence. If you do, your lawyer will file a claim with the business property owner’s insurance company, negotiating to get you the maximum compensation possible. If this fails, your lawyer will then file a lawsuit on your behalf.
In either instance – an insurance settlement or a personal injury lawsuit – the property owner’s liability must be proved by showing they are legally responsible for your injuries. This is established by determining negligence, in other words, did the property owner’s actions cause or fail to prevent your slip, trip, and fall accident or did you, as the victim, somehow contribute to the fall.
Negligence is proved and liability determined when a property owner (or the owner’s manager or employee) fails to act as a responsible person. For example, the hazardous obstacle or condition was there long enough for the owner to take action to eliminate it or the owner failed to routinely check for potentially dangerous conditions on the property and take preventative measures.
In some cases, the property owner and their insurance carrier may argue that you, the accident victim are responsible for the slip, trip, and fall. Known as comparative negligence, the owner will attempt to show you were engaging in some activity which prevented you from seeing the hazard or warning signs, or you did not have legal access to the property when the accident occurred. When hiring a slip, trip, and fall lawyer, you won’t have to worry about going back and forth with the owner – SteinLaw will handle everything!
A Florida Slip, Trip, and Fall Lawyer Can Help
As you can see, slip, trip, and fall accidents can be complex, but your experienced slip, trip, and fall lawyer has the resources needed to help you with your case. At SteinLaw, we will guide you, handling the paperwork and all the complicated details, and allowing you to recover fully from your accident. Also, your lawyer will see that your claim is filed in a timely manner, fully meeting the requirements and deadlines regarding your lawsuit. Most importantly, your trusted SteinLaw lawyer will explain your case fully, fight for your rights, and customize your defense.