The last thing you expect while out shopping at Burlington Coat Factory is to slip, fall and hurt yourself. Unfortunately, disaster does not wait for an agreeable time to strike, which may leave you feeling confused, anxious and stressed. If you recently took a tumble in Burlington Coat Factory, the legal professionals of Gould Injury Lawyers are here to help you understand premises liability law and determine whether you have a solid legal claim to explore.
Common Slip-and-Fall Injuries
Even a minor fall may cause major injuries. If you do not know you sustained an injury or wait too late to receive medical care, you could give a false impression that you did not hurt yourself or you did not sustain major injuries. Knowing common injuries caused by slips, trips and falls helps you and your doctor know which specific injuries to check for.
No matter how minor a head injury, let a medical professional examine you, as even minor head trauma may become a medical emergency. Head injuries range from minor concussions that clear up on their own to severe traumatic brain injuries that impede your ability to function normally. Expect your medical team to run diagnostic tests, such as computed tomography scans and magnetic resonance imaging scans, to determine if you have a head injury, as doctors cannot diagnose the condition using symptoms alone.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Even if you sustain a soft tissue injury, you may not know it because the injuries do not make themselves outwardly visible. This is another reason to let a doctor examine you after a minor fall. Examples of soft tissue injuries include wrist and ankle sprains and ligament and tendon tears. Untreated soft tissue injuries may lead to ongoing pain and subsequent harm.
Broken bone injuries range from serious breaks to minor fractures. Falling may also harm tissue around the broken bone, which could require extensive medical care to treat ongoing pain and prevent neuromuscular impairment. If you even suspect you fractured or broke a bone after falling in Burlington Coat Factory, have a medical professional take X-rays.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries happen when the spine becomes detached or compressed. Such injuries may kill a person or require ongoing care. Slip-and-fall case plaintiffs who suspect they could have a spinal cord injury must receive immediate medical attention, as these injuries are often the most expensive to treat.
Determining Fault in Slip-and-Fall Cases
Other than prioritizing their injuries, slip-and-fall accident victims must also determine fault if they want to build a solid legal case. Certain premises help determine legal liability:
- Whether the injured party’s own negligence could reduce her or his legal compensation according to the degree of fault, which is comparative negligence.
- Whether the plaintiff sustained an injury because she or he entered a restricted area or a space where she or he should have expected conditions that contributed to the accident. If the plaintiff did not belong somewhere or should have expected hazards, the property owner may not owe the person a duty of care.
- If a negligent Burlington Coat Factory employee caused the accident while on the clock, the property owner may also bear liability for the resulting injuries.
- If a slip-and-fall accident happens on poorly maintained or built property, the property owner could bear liability for neglecting her or his property maintenance responsibilities, no matter if the owner caused the hazard.
The concept surrounding these propositions is if one party involved in the legal case exercised less caution than the other party, the less-cautious party must cover at least a percentage of the more-cautious party’s damages.
Establishing Knowledge of Dangerous Conditions
Another aspect of determining fault is proving the defendant knew about a dangerous condition. This involves showing:
- The defendant created the dangerous condition.
- The defendant knew the dangerous condition existed and did nothing about it.
- The dangerous condition went unattended for so long that the defendant should have identified and resolved it before the plaintiff sustained injury.
For the plaintiff to establish negligence successfully, she or he must prove the defendant should have known that inattention would create a hazard for authorized guests or visitors.
Understanding Fault for Commercial Property Slip-and-Fall Cases
For the at-fault party to bear legal responsibility for a guest’s, customer’s or client’s injuries, plaintiffs must show the business owner should have known about the slip-and-fall hazard and resolved it because a reasonable business owner would have known about the danger and how it could harm others and remedied the situation.
Even then, the law decides if the property owner exercised caution by evaluating the preventative measures the defendant took to avoid an accident and determining if the defendant took reasonable action. Plaintiffs must also remember that slips and falls on commercial properties may involve multiple at-fault parties.
Collecting Damages for Slip-and-Fall Injury Claims
One essential reason to build a solid slip-and-fall claim is so you stand a better chance of receiving fair financial compensation, known as damages. Personal injuries like slips and falls involve two different kinds of damages: compensatory damages and punitive damages.
Compensatory damages help restore plaintiffs to the financial, physical and emotional position they had before the accident. Injured parties deserve compensation for current as well as future medical bills, rehabilitation, the price of living with a disability that significantly alters a person’s lifestyle, lost wages, a loss of earning capacity and the repair or replacement of property damaged in the accident.
Slipping and falling in a Burlington Coat Factory could open the door to non-monetary damages. For instance, slip-and-fall injuries could lead to pain and suffering, which includes physical pain and emotional hardship. A slip-and-fall victim’s spouse may qualify for loss of consortium damages, which account for losing the emotional and mental aspects of marriage, such as affection, companionship, comfort, assistance and intimate relations.
Instead of compensating the injured party, punitive damages instead punish defendants who engage in especially outrageous and atrocious behavior that harm others. These damages also act as a cautionary tale and warning to others who may engage in similar atrocious or outrageous behavior. Not every slip-and-fall case qualifies for punitive damages, and plaintiffs may only qualify for them if they receive compensatory damages.
When injured parties find out they have a good chance of receiving damages, they may work with their legal team to decide whether they want to receive a lump-sum damage award or structured settlements. Even though plaintiffs receive all their compensation at once with a lump-sum award, they must account for state and federal income taxes.
By choosing monthly or annual structured settlements, plaintiffs reduce their tax obligations. They may also stand a better chance of recovering damages from the defendant if they accept a structured settlement. To make a well-informed decision, slip-and-fall victims deserve to speak with their legal team and a financial professional and consider their current financial situation.
Contact Us Today
Do not delay in exploring your legal options and building your legal case if you recently injured yourself after slipping and falling in Burlington Coat Factory. Gould Injury Lawyers is a law firm committed to taking exemplary care of our clients and helping them understand their legal rights. Accidents happen fast, and that is how we feel you should receive compensation. Contact one of our representatives to schedule a free consultation by calling 888-WIN-FAST.
If you suffered injuries due to a slip and fall at any of the following commercial establishments, our personal injury attorneys could help with your case:
- Basking Robbins
- Bath & Body Works
- Bed, Bath and Beyond
- Big Lots
- Burger King
- Dollar General
- Dollar Tree
- Duane Reade/Walgreens