Do I Need an Attorney for My Slip and Fall Accident?
While on another’s property, you may suffer a slip-and-fall accident injury. Even if you know you likely have a valid personal injury claim, you cannot afford to take chances with your right to compensation. Securing experienced legal representation helps protect your rights and maximizes your compensation. Handling the case alone could cost you more than you realize.
In slip-and-fall accidents, you may have a hard time identifying the at-fault party, which complicates your case. Without obvious liability, property owners rarely take responsibility for the harm others sustain on their property. Also, defendants often do everything to minimize and dismiss the injured person’s injuries. That becomes another roadblock to receiving compensation. Let your legal representative deal with insurance providers while you concentrate on recovering.
A Deeper Comprehension of Slip-and-Fall Accidents
Slips and falls often happen in various settings:
- Shopping malls
- Parking garages
- Government buildings
Wherever the possibility of property owner negligence exists, an accident may happen.
Property owners must address premises hazards. If they do not, others could sustain traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries and bone breaks. Injured parties may qualify for compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Qualifying involves gathering evidence that proves the property owner’s recklessness.
Understanding Premises Liability
Did you read about “premises liability” while researching personal injury claims? Premises liability is the idea that property owners and controllers have a duty to maintain their property for the safety of those who access the space. When a guest, customer or visitor becomes injured because the property owner did not uphold her or his responsibility, the injured party may seek compensation through a slip-and-fall or another personal injury suit. Sometimes, the injured party bears partial responsibility for harm endured. Even then, the property owner could bear liability for inaction or action that created the dangerous situation and injuries.
Injured parties must prove three facts to build their premises liability case:
- Failure To Meet Responsibilities: Whether through action, such as leaving rugs piled on the floor while sweeping, or inaction, such as neglecting to clean a spill, the property owner failed to create a safe environment.
- Obligation to Provide a Safe Space: Injured parties must show the property owner had a responsibility to uphold a specific standard. That means keeping aisles clear of obstructions and repairing malfunctioning doors to meet safety expectations while navigating public areas.
- Negligence Lead to Harm: When property owners create or do not address hazards, their negligence could entitle the injured party to fair compensation.
Experienced attorneys know how to gather evidence to prove all three facts.
Protecting Your Right to Compensation
To protect their right to compensation, slip-and-fall accident victims must take specific steps after sustaining harm. For instance, even if injuries do not seem major, victims should seek medical attention sooner rather than later. Some injury symptoms do not appear immediately. Undergoing a physical helps establish a paper trail and proves the injured party sought medical treatment. Physical examination results may help victims determine how much to seek in damages and how to recover.
Those who slip and fall on another’s property should report the accident to the owner. Much like filing a police report after a car accident, filing an incident report with the property owner helps support a personal injury case. The report should mention where the accident happened, injuries sustained, the victim’s name, witness names and existing conditions. Victims should get a copy of this report.
After securing a copy of the report, victims should document the incident as much as possible. Photographs, witness statements and contact information, and notes on events leading up to the accident help paint a picture of what happened. Preserving clothing and shoes worn during the accident also protects potential evidence.
Property owners and their insurance companies sometimes contact victims for a statement. While this may seem like an attempt to remedy the situation and compensate the harmed individual, it could backfire. Insurance providers often do everything they can to weaponize a person’s statement and unravel the victim’s case. For that reason, injured parties should not give statements or post details about the incident on social media.
Explaining Common Personal Injury Damages
How much you should expect to recover in slip-and-fall injury damages depends on various factors. Courts use medical bills as a determining factor for personal injury suit damages. Work closely with your doctor and medical team to understand your recovery and medical treatment options.
If your injuries keep you from working, you could qualify for lost wages damages. Keep close track of how many work hours you miss and how much you lose in wages because of missed work.
Depending on how long you take to return to your usual routine, you could qualify for expected future monetary damages. Courts must consider the statute of limitations for personal injury claims. If the statute expires before you recover fully, you may have more medical bills and lost wages to cover. Expected future monetary damages account for health care costs and lost earnings incurred after the statute of limitations passes.
When you drive to doctor’s appointments, you deserve transportation cost compensation. The same applies when you must pay for lodging or medical devices associated with your recovery. If you must modify your home to make it easier to navigate your space, you could qualify for compensation for that, too.
Some personal injury cases involve pain and suffering, which are nonmonetary damages. Examples include anxiety, stress, depression and loss of enjoyment of life. Mental health therapists help victims understand the psychological anguish caused by a personal injury. While not always easy to prove, nonmonetary damages deserve a place in your case.
Contact Us Today
If you slipped, fell and injured yourself on another’s property, do not take chances with your legal rights or damages. Let the experienced and trusted attorneys of Gould Injury Law evaluate your case and protect your right to compensation. Call us at our New Haven location at 203-773-0817 or submit an online form. Let us defend your rights from day one.