Filing a Slip & Fall Accident Claim
As you might already know, slip and fall accidents are quite common. Such opportunities seem to lurk around every corner. Slip and fall accidents can occur at work, the gym, or the supermarket—virtually anywhere is fair game. And, of course, if your accident results from someone else’s negligence, then you may be entitled to compensation for the ensuing financial damages.
Many people think that slip and fall accidents are less likely to involve younger individuals. While the elderly are more susceptible to injuries from falls, this does not exclude younger people from sustaining serious harm. The human body is surprisingly fragile, especially when confronted with a sudden, violent force. For example, when you fall, it may be your natural instinct to throw your arms out in an effort to “break” your fall. However, doing so—no matter your age—may result in serious injuries, such as a broken arm or torn shoulder tendon.
So, what do you do when you suffer an injury from a slip and fall accident because of someone else’s negligence? Make finding a skilled lawyer your top priority. On this front, The Ward Law Group has you covered. Our firm has nearly a decade of experience in dealing with a vast assortment of personal injury claims. Additionally, our slip & fall attorneys serve both the English- and Spanish-speaking communities. If you speak Spanish, don’t let insurance companies intimidate you from seeking the compensation you deserve. Contact us today!
What to do Immediately After a Slip & Fall Accident
As with any other type of accident, your immediate response is crucial to maximizing your future settlement. Don’t underestimate the importance of taking these simple steps.
First and foremost, you should report the accident to the owner of the premises. In the event that the premises is classified as public property, report the incident to the appropriate city or town officials. Reporting the accident immediately will give instant legitimacy to your claim, especially if there are no witnesses to the fall.
Of course, if there are witnesses, make sure to request their names and contact information. In slip and fall cases, eye witness testimonies are pivotal in maximizing your potential settlement. Additionally, if your injuries allow, try to gather photographic evidence of the scene. It is important to do this now, as the conditions of the environment may change soon after your fall. For example, if you slipped on a wet floor that had no warning signs, you’re going to want to capture those conditions before the floor dries up or the establishment posts a warning sign.
If your injury warrants medical attention, seek it out immediately. Your health is more important than anything else. But, the timeliness of your treatment will also have a bearing on your case. It is very common for insurance companies to assume that if you did not immediately seek medical assistance, then you were actually hurt after all. Being able to furnish medical documentation of your injuries just adds another layer of legitimacy to your slip & fall claim.
The Duty of Care
The vast majority of slip & fall cases fall under the umbrella of a legal concept known as premises liability. This concept becomes important in cases in which unsafe or defective conditions on someone else’s property resulted in injury to an invitee or licensee. An invitee is a person who has the property owner’s permission to access the premises. This usually refers to friends, family members, or neighbors, etc. Licensees, on the other hand, refer to people who also have permission to enter the premises. However, in this case, the person in question is doing so for their own purposes (for example, as a salesman or vendor). Usually, licensees are owed a lesser duty of care than invitees. Nevertheless, licensees may be able to file a claim if the property contains dangerous conditions that 1). the owner is aware of or 2). the licensee is not likely to see.
There are quite a few reasons why an environment could be considered as unsafe as a matter of law. Of course, if the environment is unsafe and it results in a slip & fall injury, then the owner is responsible for the damages those conditions incurred. Here are a few factors that may contribute to slip & fall accidents:
- Bad Lighting
- Unraveling Carpet
- Cluttered Floors
- Uneven Tiling
- Slippery Conditions (such as ice, snow, or spillages)
- Sidewalk Cracks & Potholes
- Unnaturally High Door Partitions
- Treacherous Staircases
- …and more.
Of course, the concepts of duty of care and premises liability vary slightly from state to state. This may make things complicated in cases that would initially seem clear-cut and concise. Because of this, you’re going to want an experienced team of lawyers such as The Ward Law Group to guide you through the process.
Types of Slip & Fall Accident Injuries & Compensation
Remember, slip & fall accidents are more likely to result in injury than you might expect. This is especially true in regards to senior citizens, who are naturally more fragile than their youthful counterparts. Injuries from slip & falls may be minor or they may be serious and debilitating. Either way, you deserve to be compensated for your troubles. Here are a few examples of injuries that may result from a slip & fall incident:
- Broken Bones or Fractures
- SLAP Tears or Shoulder Injuries
- Tendon or Ligament Damage
- Lacerations & Bruises
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- …and more.
If you suffered from an injury as a result of third-party negligence, then you may be entitled to financial reparation. This may come in more forms than you might initially expect, as there are often hidden costs associated with debilitating injuries. Some examples of these forms of compensation include:
- Medical Bills: This involves your initial medical treatment, visits to the doctor, medications, emergency surgery, and more.
- Pain & Suffering: Intangibles are complicated in regards to receiving compensation. But, with an experienced lawyer, you may be able to recover damages resulting from mental and emotional trauma.
- Legal Fees: If you were injured because of conditions beyond your realm of control, then the jury may also require the defendant to pay for your legal costs.
- Lost Wages: If your injury puts you out of work, you may be able to receive reparation for those missed days.
- Loss of Consortium: In some cases, an injury can affect your ability to sustain a satisfying relationship with your wife and/or family members. You may be able to receive compensation for this.
How The Ward Law Group Can Help
An important thing to remember: insurance companies are not out to help you—they’re out to make a profit. Naturally, this means that they will do anything they can in order to minimize your potential settlement. This is why you need an experienced team of lawyers. A savvy attorney knows his or her way around the law and is very good at securing what he or she wants.
Believe it or not, one of our founding members, Gregory Ward, once worked as an insurance adjuster. Ultimately, he found that he could not continue in that line of work with a good conscience. Now, Gregory Ward plays for the other team. His professional background makes him unique because he has a special understanding of how the other side of the court likes to play. And, he uses this to his advantage when securing your compensation. Don’t forget: The Ward Law Group also assists Spanish-speaking clients. Don’t let your language serve as a barrier between you and the compensation that you deserve. Contact The Ward Law Group