A “slip and fall” case happens when a person slips in another person’s property, which results in an injury. This calls for a personal injury lawsuit and makes the property owner legally responsible for “premises liability” claims. It’s an unusual and even trivial scenario for a lot of people. Still, this law puts commercial spaces and residential owners accountable for other people’s safety on their premises. This includes making sure that there is sufficient lighting, the stairs aren’t too narrow, that they’re hazardous, and that guests are made aware of wet floors. The same applies to public spaces like malls and sidewalks.
Regardless of how serious or minor the injury incurred is, you have to take the necessary steps to ensure that accountability is taken. The tricky thing with this is that it doesn’t always lead to a lawsuit because the case isn’t strong enough. If you’re thinking of filing a claim for your injuries, it’s worth making an objective assessment of your situation to see whether you have a chance of winning.
Slips Due to Wet Floors
One of the most common causes of slip-and-fall injuries is wet floors. This can happen when there are leaks, water tracks are spread indoors, and cleaning is in progress. You’ll see signage and warning in various forms alerting people of this hazard, and a lot of commercial places have taken the precaution of cordoning these areas altogether for public safety.
When you slip and fall due to the absence of these signs and precautions, or they’re improperly placed, then you have a reason to go to court. You’ll be suing them for their negligence because it wouldn’t have happened if you were aware of the risks.
Slips Due to Damaged Floors
It’s not only water that makes a floor slippery and, therefore, dangerous. Any floor damage and poorly maintained floor decor can cause a person to trip and suffer from a serious fall. Think loose carpeting, lightweight rugs, and freshly polished hardwood floors. Uneven and cracked tiles make people trip, too. You can confidently claim that you suffer from any injury due to these because of the owner’s negligence. They have to be accountable for the hazards in the spaces they create, ensuring that the tiles and carpets are properly installed and rugs don’t pose risks.
Slips Due to Missing Hardware
Negligence doesn’t only apply to the flooring itself. Certain structures require safety hardware such as handrails. Sadly, private and public spaces forego this safety measure in light of their desired aesthetic, putting both them and the people who use those spaces in danger. Businesses must have handicap access areas, too, so that differently abled individuals have a safe public place.
The court will only consider any case you file if it’s proven that the property owners failed to place the necessary signs and precautions for your safety. In any of these instances, you may lose your claim if it’s proven that the business was not neglectful and you were the one who wasn’t being aware of your surroundings.
The moment you slip and fall on another person’s property, the most important thing you have to do is get medical assistance. Apart from your health, getting the extent of your injuries documented right away will make for a stronger case. This removes the doubt that they were caused by the fall. The next is to inform the property owner and get a personal injury attorney on your side.
Time is of the essence when it comes to these cases due to the statute of limitations. This refers to the deadlines of the legal actions you want to take to protect your rights. Your attorney will know how long you have–at most, it’s two years–before the court refuses your claim.
Another good thing about getting legal counsel on your side as early as possible is that they’re the best people to help you deal with your insurance. In an ideal world, your insurance company will see you’re hurt and pay all your medical expenses. However, in reality, an insurance adjuster will likely do everything they can to pay you less than you expect. An attorney can straighten out the information you’ll provide these adjusters so that you get the full benefit of your insurance for this incident.
Going to court is never easy, regardless of how strong your case is. In particular, businesses will have equally competitive lawyers on their side who’ll want to protect their clients’ brand and money. Filing a lawsuit with the right knowledge, legal counsel, and expectations is always the best way to get through this successfully.