Slip and fall accidents can happen to you anywhere you go. If you aren’t hurt, you may laugh it off while nursing a bruised ego. However, sometimes the injuries are serious and will require urgent medical attention, and may even lead to lifelong disabilities.
Falls are in fact one of the leading cause of non-fatal medically treated injuries with over 8 million hospital visits each year in the United States according to the National Floor Safety Institue as a result of slip and fall injuries. They are also the major cause of workers compensation claims in the United States.
More seriously too, they are also the main cause of injury-related deaths for adults aged over 65 years.
It is not just older people who are prone to such injuries as they occur regardless of age. When you have severe injuries from this type of accident, medical bills will start piling up. You may wonder if you can file a slip and fall claim. Learning more about slip and fall cases can shed some light on the subject.
What Does a Slip and Fall Case Entail?
According to a personal injury lawyer at Nuñez Law, P.L., slip and fall cases are a subcategory of personal injury accidents. If you slip, fall, or trip on someone else’s premises and sustain an injury, you may be able to file a personal injury claim, subject to the facts of the particular case..
The most important factor is that your accident and injuries must be due to the property owner’s negligence. For example, you may be shopping at a clothing store when you unexpectedly trip over torn carpeting that caused you to land on your knee and damage your joint.
You could stop in the supermarket to grab something for dinner and slip on a wet floor that had no signage to indicate the danger. Other dangerous conditions that a property owner should manage are cracked walkways, inadequate lighting, and loose railings on stairways.
Proving that your slip, trip, or fall was caused by a negligent property owner can be tricky. It often takes the legal expertise of a skilled attorney to help prove this point.
How Does One Prove Negligence in a Slip and Fall Claim?
As the injured party, it is up to you to prove that the property owner was careless or negligent in this situation. You must show that the owner created this dangerous condition that led to your fall or show that they knew this condition existed and deliberately chose not to fix it.
You may also be able to prove that the hazard that led to your accident was present for a lengthy stretch of time, meaning that the owner had a reasonable chance to fix them but ignored the issue.
On top of proving negligence, you need to be prepared to be scrutinized because the property owner and their insurer will likely try to claim your injuries were the result of your own carelessness. Known as comparative negligence, it can easily be spun to make you look foolish and that you should have acted with greater care.
In certain circumstances, property owners will attempt to remedy the hazard immediately after your accident. This would mean there is no evidence of the danger on the premises. Should you slip, trip, or fall on someone’s property, you should make sure you get photos and videos of the area. Without them, the property owner could erase video footage and correct the issue, making it far more difficult to prove negligence.
With an experienced personal injury attorney, you will have someone who can advocate for you in a slip and fall case. They have the resources to help you prove what happened.
The Most Common Places Where Slip and Fall Accidents Tend to Occur
Slips, trips, and falls can happen on any property that is owned or maintained by someone else. This includes all residential, commercial, and government-owned properties.
In Miami, this often arises between landlords and tenants, particularly when building safety codes are violated. Cracked stairs, missing handrails, and lack of proper lighting in stairwells are among the most common complaints.
Commercial properties like restaurants and grocery stores are another common location. Negligence in this case must be shown by the owner causing the danger or being aware of it.
This can also occur if an employee should have reasonably known of the dangerous condition, though it can be difficult to prove that someone should have known something. Still, if an employee sees a spill on the floor at the supermarket and doesn’t do anything about it and someone slips in it, it could be grounds for a slip and fall claim.
Slip and fall accidents on state or government property are often more complex when it comes to establishing liability although they can be taken to court. The need to ensure the details about the accident itself and the repercussions, both medical and legal, are matters that an experienced attorney can assist with.
Source: Bobby Nunez, Accident Attorney, Miami, FL