Should You Hire a Lawyer for a Slip and Fall Injury Case?
If you or someone close to you were involved in a slip and fall accident, it’s important to consider hiring a seasoned slip-and-fall lawyer to help you with your case. A slip and fall case is considered a personal injury claim that can require a lawsuit, so you need a qualified personal injury attorney to help you with your fall-related injuries.
What Are the Most Common Slip and Fall Injuries?
Slip and fall accidents are categorized as premises liability claims. Slip and fall accidents that occur because of dangerous property conditions are very common. They can happen on commercial properties like parking lots, office buildings, or retail stores. The most common injuries include:
- Sprained ankles or wrists;
- Broken arms;
- Broken pelvis;
- Back problems;
- Head trauma; or
- Facial Injuries.
These accidents usually take place where there are obstacles in the walkway, slippery floors or stairways, icy sidewalks on private property, and even missing handrails.
What Should You Do After Slip and Fall Accident?
Immediately after a slip and fall accident, the first thing you should do is document as much information as you can. Use your cellphone to take pictures and videos of any potential evidence, your injuries, and the condition or defect that caused your fall.. You should also collect the names and numbers of any witnesses who might be able to provide information about the incident.
After that, contact an attorney right away to get a free consultation and determine whether you have a valid claim to recover compensation for your damages moving forward.
Can I Sue If I Was Injured in a Slip and Fall?
You can work with a slip and fall attorney to recover financial compensation if you have been injured. If necessary, you can file suit to collect from the liable party if you can’t reach a negotiated settlement. However, every case is different. In order to win your lawsuit against a property owner or their insurance company, you have to establish that your injuries resulted from the other party’s negligence.
Suffering injuries in an accident can be traumatic and painful, especially when the accident is not your fault. In addition, there are...
- First, you have to prove that the other party owed a duty to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition..
- Second, you have to prove that the responsible party knew or should have known about the hazardous condition and either repaired or taken reasonable steps to warn you about the danger.
- Third, you have to prove that your injury resulted from the property owner’s failure to perform their duty to make the property safe.
If you are walking in high heels and you slip and fall in the middle of the parking lot that has no defects, then you probably don’t have grounds to make an injury claim. Conversely, if you are walking in high heels in a parking lot that is covered in ice, it’s the middle of the day, when the store has been open for hours, and you overheard an employee remarking that the property owner was aware of the ice because three other people had already slipped, then you would have grounds for a case.
Do I Need a Slip and Fall Injury Lawyer?
You are not required to hire an attorney for a slip and fall injury claim, but working with an experienced attorney can make things much easier and will likely result in a larger amount of compensation for you.
If you have a claim, there is a lot of information you have to document and a lot of evidence you and your lawyer will have to provide. Failure to do so can result in your case being dismissed..
Similarly, there are timelines within which you need to press your claim. If you are suing a city because the accident happened on public property, you might only have a few days to submit your paperwork called a “notice of intent to bring a claim”. For a claim against a private party, the claim can be brought anytime before the statute of limitations runs. But you should not delay before contacting a qualified attorney who can begin to collect evidence immediately.
Working with insurance companies can be daunting. The negligent party’s insurance companies will defend a claim for compensation after a slip and fall accident. Most insurance companies will fight very hard to avoid paying out even if your case is legitimate. That is why it can be much easier to let an attorney fight on your behalf.
If the insurance company fails to pay compensation that you think you deserve, your next step is to file a lawsuit. This, similarly, requires a great deal of paperwork, evidence, and deadlines. Working with an attorney can make all of this much easier.
How a Slip and Fall Accident Attorney Can Help Me?
A slip and fall accident attorney should offer a free case evaluation. During this evaluation, they can go over the specifics of your fall, any medical bills and lost wages you may have, and what evidence exists to prove that the property owners were negligent. With a quick review, a qualified attorney would be able to tell you whether you have grounds for a slip and fall injury claim against the property owners and their insurer based on your local laws.
A lawyer can establish who was at fault for your slip and fall
A slip and fall accident lawyer can help you document the hazards that led to your accident. You need to identify evidence that proves the situation was dangerous and led to your injury. This can include taking pictures of things like:
- Icy sidewalks;
- Poor lighting in hallways or staircases;
- Uneven flooring;
- Store spills;
- Broken stairs; and
- Unstable displays in a store.
Depending on where you live, you might only have a matter of days to submit a claim for a slip and fall accident, which is why it’s so important to work with an attorney immediately. A lawyer for fall and slip can make sure you document what you need to prove your case and you file the paperwork within the required time frame.
A lawyer can prove all the damages caused by your slip and fall
A slip and fall lawyer can help you prove all the damages you suffered because of your accident. This is a complicated legal process made much easier with help from a legal team. That team can help you prove:
- The property owner’s negligence caused your injuries;
- The injuries directly resulted in your lost wages because you could not work;
- The injuries resulted in medical bills, and possibly future medical bills for things like physical therapy; or
- The injuries also caused you emotional and psychological damage.
If you don’t know the legal process in your area, you might skip important steps in proving these damages. For example:
Some people who sustained injuries after a slip and fall don’t go to a doctor because they feel fine immediately following the incident.If the injury gets progressively worse over time, they don’t have the injury medically documented at the time it occurred.
Without proper documentation of the injury when it happened, it can be difficult to prove it was the result of a fall on another party’s property three months later or even six months later. Unless you seek immediate medical attention, you are less likely to get compensation for subsequent health problems, medical bills, lost wages, and so forth.
A good slip and fall attorney will make sure you have injuries documented by a doctor and you have a medical opinion that explains how those injuries resulted in your inability to work and your incurring subsequent medical bills.
Remember, it’s not enough just to have sustained a slip and fall injury. You have to prove that the accident is directly caused by another party’s negligence, and you have to prove that the damages you suffered are related to that injury.
What Damages Are Recoverable After a Slip and Fall Injury?
Many damages are potentially recoverable after a slip and fall injury. What you can receive compensation for is based entirely on your individual situation.
Each case is unique, but in general, you can recover damages for:
- Lost wages, and financial benefits;
- Medical bills related to your injury and any long-term rehab or related future medical treatment;
- Physical pain and sufferings; and
- Emotional and psychological pain and suffering..
How Much Is a Slip and Fall Injury Case Worth?
More than 95% of lawsuits for personal injury claims settle before trial, which means you probably won’t go to court in front of a jury or judge. Negotiating a settlement that gives you fair compensation reduces the anxiety, delay, and the risk of losing your case entirely.
How much you can win is based entirely on your case. Compensatory damages are what you get for financial losses that resulted from your injury directly, like lost work and medical bills, pain and suffering, or mental and physical trauma that you suffered from your accident. These are the most common damages..
Only in rare cases in which the defendant’s negligence was so wanton and reckless, in such disregard for the lives and safety of others, may punitive damages be awarded. They are not at all common in negligence cases.
How Long Will My Slip and Fall Case Take to Settle?
The length of time it takes to settle a case is highly individualized. If the insurance company recognizes the evidence of negligence is strong, it might choose to settle within a matter of weeks or months. It takes an average of 20 months to settle a personal injury case in many locations.
If the insurance company denies the claim and you have to file a lawsuit, this process can take even longer. The average trial length is short, only seven days, but it can take up to 30 months to reach this point in the process and get compensation.
Working with a qualified attorney is more likely to get you compensation sooner and more likely to get you a settlement prior to filing a lawsuit or going to trial.
Overall, personal injury cases are best dealt with when you work side-by-side with a lawyer who has experience with slip and fall accidents. A law firm will guide you go through the legal process, especially if you have sustained very serious injuries. A good lawyer can also help you prove negligence and get the compensation you deserve.