Slip and fall accidents are some of the most common and most dangerous accidents out there (especially when they happen from heights, such as from ladders or stairs). When you head out to tackle your day, you certainly don’t expect a property owner’s negligence to leave you injured, but if it does, it’s time to seek the professional legal counsel you need from an experienced Decatur slip and fall attorney.
The Elements of a Slip and Fall Case
Slip and fall claims are based on negligence, which means that if a store owner or business manager’s negligence leads to your injury-causing slip and fall accident, the business can be held liable. The elements needed to bring a successful slip and fall case include:
- The property owner or manager failed to keep the property in reasonably safe condition for guests like you to pass through.
- The property owner or manager either caused the unsafe condition and didn’t do enough to mitigate the danger or knew about the unsafe condition but either did nothing or too little to take care of the problem or to adequately warn guests.
- The unsafe condition in question caused you to slip and fall, and you sustained injuries in the process.
Victims of slip and fall accidents are often all too eager to chalk the injury-causing accidents up to their own clumsiness – out of embarrassment. The fact is, however, that slip and falls can lead to serious injuries, and obtaining the compensation to which you are entitled can be critical to your ability to reach a full recovery.
Slip and Falls: The Statistics
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shares several significant statistics that highlight the inherent dangers of slip and fall accidents, including:
- About 20 percent of all falls lead to serious injuries like broken bones and head injuries.
- Falls lead to more than 800,000 hospitalizations a year (usually for hip fractures or head injuries).
- Falls cause more than 95 percent of all hip fractures and are the most common cause of TBIs (traumatic brain injuries).
- The total medical bill for falls in 2015 was more than $50 billion.
Slip and falls happen, and they tend to be quite dangerous.
If You Are Injured in a Slip and Fall Accident
It’s important to note that every slip and fall accident claim is specific to its own circumstances and will follow its own path, but there are some steps every victim of a slip and fall should take to help maintain the integrity of his or claim, including:
- Seek the immediate medical attention you need. Even if you don’t think you were seriously injured, it’s important to know that some injuries can blossom over time, and because early intervention often means improved health outcomes, a visit to the doctor is always in the best interest of your health and of your slip and fall claim. Further, carefully follow your doctor’s medical instructions – by taking your injuries seriously, you help alert the insurance company to their seriousness.
- Let the property owner or manager know about your slip and fall accident and ask for a copy of the report.
- If you’re able, take pictures of the unsafe condition that caused you to slip and fall and of your injuries. If there are eyewitnesses, take their statements, and obtain their contact information. If you’re unable to perform these tasks yourself, someone at the scene will very likely step in to help.
Common Causes of Slip and Falls
Property owners owe you a duty of care that extends to allowing you reasonably safe passage. When they fail to fulfill this responsibility, dangerous slip and falls can be the result. Common causes include:
- Outdoor walkways and parking lots that are poorly maintained, badly worn, or made slippery by ice, snow, sleet, rain, or accumulated debris (such as fallen leaves) that isn’t adequately cleared
- Entryways that are uneven, made slippery by tracked-in weather and debris, or have badly worn, bunched, or otherwise unsafe floor coverings
- Inadequate lighting
- Dangerously designed, constructed, or maintained stairways
- Spills that go unattended
Consult with an Experienced Decatur Slip and Fall Attorney Today
If you’ve been injured by a property owner’s negligence, the dedicated Decatur slip and fall attorneys at Malman Law have the experience, resources, and legal acuity to help you bring your strongest claim in defense of your rights and in support of your just compensation. To learn more, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.
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