Slip and fall accident lawyers are available for premises liability cases. When guests or visitors, clients or customers, by no fault of their own, are injured in a fall due to negligent property maintenance by a property owner, victims are entitled to receive compensation. Slip and fall accidents can happen on the porch of a friend’s house or in the aisle of your local pharmacy. Accidents do happen and they happen somewhat regularly. The question of liability in the event of a fall—determining who is responsible for the injured party’s injuries—is the main reason victims should meet with an accident lawyer after a fall.
If Someone Falls on My Property Am I Liable?
Thousands of people are injured annually in falls—by slipping, stumbling, or tripping—on icy stairs, sprinkler heads protruding from a lawn, an unexpected divot on a pathway, or wet floors. People fall—it is part of everyday life. Most pick themselves up and walk on. Stumbling over a small tree branch that’s fallen across a walkway or slipping in a mud puddle in a parking lot after a rainstorm is simply an accident. A property owner cannot always be held responsible for someone walking through a mud puddle or picking up a branch immediately after it’s fallen in their walkway. We all have a responsibility to watch where we’re going.
That said, property owners do have a responsibility to maintain their property. In the event of a slip and fall accident, the determining factor of negligence rests on whether the property owner acted in a careful, preventive way so that stumbling, slipping and falling was not likely to happen—even if you were careless. To receive compensation for injuries there must be evidence that the owner of the property was negligent in maintaining the property, creating a dangerous condition—even unintentionally—of failing to ensure his or her guests, customers, visitors, patrons, or clients safety.
Do I Have a Slip and Fall Case?
Here are some general guidelines to help you decide whether someone else was at fault for your slip and fall injury and whether you should seek legal counsel from a slip and fall accident lawyer.
First, the owner of the property or one of their employees must have caused the conditions that made a surface slippery, worn, uneven, hazardous, or unsafe to walk or step upon. The owner or one of their employees must have been aware of the dangerous conditions and did nothing about correcting it. Finally, the property owner or an employee should have known of the dangerous condition because any “reasonable” person responsible for the property would have acted to fix the unsafe or dangerous condition for visitors, patrons, clients, customers, or guests.
The reality is, when it comes to such liability cases, the determination by judges and juries as to whether a property owner was negligent is often decided by common sense. The reasonable steps that were taken to maintain and keep a property safe by the owner, employee or occupier of a property will be carefully reviewed.
Any negligence claims are often determined by whether the defendant acted reasonably in maintaining their property. The owner must have made a regular effort to keep the property safe and clean. A victim can only receive compensation for their injuries if they can produce proper evidence to the contrary. For example, did you trip over a worn carpet or slip on a loose area of flooring that had been in that condition for a long enough period of time that the owner should have known about it. Was a regular maintenance schedule followed for cleaning and repairing? If you tripped over an object someone had left on the floor or ground, was there a legitimate reason for the object to be there? Could a simple warning sign or type of barrier have been erected to prevent people from slipping and falling? Or did poor or no lighting contribute to the accident?
Consult with Slip and Fall Accident Lawyers for the Best Results
If you can answer any of these questions favorably, chances are you may have a claim for compensation. You must consider and balance whether your own carelessness was a contributing factor in causing the accident. Nevertheless, it’s best to consult with slip and fall accident lawyers to weigh all the options available to you.