On first consideration, a slip and fall accident may seem like a minor and insignificant accident.
And indeed, some slip and falls are innocuous, resulting in little more than perhaps a bruised ego.
But sometimes, slip and fall accidents can be serious, and even deadly.
In fact, slip and falls are a leading cause of injury and death among older adults, and amongst people of all ages, a significant slip and fall can have major consequences.
Top Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents
While there are various different causes of slip and fall accidents, dangerous conditions are one of the most common. Despite property owners’ duty to maintain their properties in a safe and hazard-free condition, the following often cause serious slip and falls--
- Broken stairs;
- Broken elevators or escalators;
- Uneven walking surfaces;
- Spills of food, drink, and other substances;
- Falling objects;
- Depressions or holes in walking areas;
- Objects in the way;
- Dangerous construction sites; and
- Unmarked other dangerous conditions.
Slips and Falls Can Lead to Serious Harms
When a dangerous condition on a property exists, and said condition causes a slip and fall accident, it is very possible for this accident to result in serious injuries.
While older adults are most vulnerable to serious harm, anyone can be injured in a slip and fall depending upon the force involved.
Some of the most catastrophic injuries that people may suffer in a slip and fall include traumatic brain injuries, bone fracture injuries, back and neck injuries, and spinal cord injuries.
Of course, other injuries, such as internal injuries, soft tissue injuries, and laceration and abrasion injuries are all possible too.
Injuries result in physical pain and suffering, and sometimes long-term disability or permanent impairment and disfigurement, too. Of course, when a person is seriously injured, they are also unable to work and earn wages, leading to economic losses.
These losses are paired with their medical expenses, which are also usually high and financially burdensome. Further, the entire ordeal can lead to psychological harm, ranging from anxiety to depression to even post-traumatic stress disorder.
Understand the Laws of Your Slip and Fall Claim
Being the victim of a slip, trip, and fall accident can be a shocking experience, especially when the accident results in serious harm and economic and noneconomic losses. But if the accident was a result of someone else’s fault, then you maintain the right to bring forth a slip and fall claim against that person.
Slip and fall claims fall under the umbrella of premises liability law. Premises liability refers to property owners’ liability for accidents that occur on their premises.
Law also holds that property owners owe those who enter their properties lawfully a duty of care: to maintain their properties in a reasonably safe condition.
When an unsafe condition exists on a property (such as a spilled beverage within a store or a hole in the ground outdoors or broken sidewalk around a park) the property owner has a duty to repair the condition within a reasonable amount of time if they know of the condition or should have known of the condition.
When this duty of care is breached--a dangerous condition exists that the property owner knows of or should have known of, the condition goes unremedied, and a person lawfully on the property is harmed as a result--then the property owner can be held liable for the individual’s damages.
Types of damages that a person can seek in a slip and fall claim include compensation for:
- Economic losses - Actual economic losses resulting from the accident, including medical bills, lost wages, rehabilitation and therapy costs, etc.; and
- Noneconomic losses - The value of intangible losses resulting from the slip and fall, such as the value of your pain, suffering, emotional anguish, or permanent disfigurement.
How Can Working with a Slip and Fall Attorney Near Me Help?
Pursuing a civil claim against a property owner can be difficult, even when the facts of the case are cut and dry and fault seems obvious.
Even more complicated is pursuing a personal injury claim against a property owner with multiple well-trained and experienced lawyers on their side, such as a claim filed against a retail or grocery store, or perhaps a municipality.
In either event, working with a slip and fall injury attorney can prove beneficial, especially when the stakes are high because your losses have been so catastrophic. When you work with a slip and fall lawyer, your attorney will:
- Investigate your case. Remember, you can only hold a property owner liable for your harm if you can prove that a dangerous condition existed, that the property owner knew or should have known of the condition, and that the property owner failed to remedy the condition within a reasonable amount of time. In order to prove these elements, a thorough investigation must be opened. One of the most complicated aspects of a premises liability case is determining what is a “reasonable” amount of time - our lawyers not only investigate your case, but do research to identify similar cases and the amount of time that was determined reasonable in those cases.
- Handle the legal elements. An experienced lawyer will also handle all legal elements related to your case, including filing a claim within the appropriate insurance company, filing a notice of claim if necessary, ensuring that a suit is brought within the statute of limitations in California, sending spoliation of evidence letters, issuing a demand letter, and more. This allows you to focus on your recovery.
- Fight for a fair settlement. The insurance company of the defendant may want to settle your case quickly, and offer you a settlement as such. However, most first settlement offers are much lower than plaintiffs really deserve, and without a lawyer on your side to review your settlement, you may not realize this. When you work with a lawyer, you improve your chances of getting the settlement you deserve.
Reach Out to a Slip and Fall Lawyer Los Angeles
Our slip and fall lawyers are passionate about what we do, and start each case we take on a with a free consultation. If you’re trying to find a slip and fall lawyer near you, call our law office today for legal counsel you can trust.
When a slip and fall leads to physical, economic, and psychological harm, working with an experienced slip and fall lawyer like those found at Starpoint Law, LC Attorneys at Law can make a difference.
Our lawyers can help you to understand your right to pursue damages, and will work hard to maximize your settlement.
Want to talk about it?
Reach out today to a trip and fall attorney in Los Angeles