You Slipped and Fell – Who’s Liable for Your Injuries?
Slip and fall accidents happen all the time. Outside of motor vehicle accidents, they’re some of the most common accidents that injure people in the nation.
In fact, slip and falls make up the most common cause of visits to the emergency room. Not all injuries are serious, but many severe injuries do result from slip and falls; falls are the third-highest cause of accidental death in the United States.
If you’ve been injured while on someone else’s property, you may need compensation for your injuries, including medical bills and lost wages. But who’s liable?
Liability and Accidents: Who’s to Blame?
The person to blame may be the owner of the property on which you were injured.
The property owner may be held responsible for your injury if they:
- Knew that there was something dangerous in the property – a broken floorboard, water on the floor, a missing or loose step, etc. – and didn’t do anything to fix it
- Knew about the dangerous condition and didn’t take any reasonable steps to prevent any injury, such as putting out warning signs for a spill on the floor
- Created the unsafe condition that resulted in the injury
If one of these conditions is met, the owner may be held legally responsible for your injury. A judge or jury will determine if there were common sense precautions taken by the owner to take care of the condition and/or alert people about the danger that was there.
Of course, in Alabama, we have something called contributory negligence. That means the law looks at the actions of both parties in determining liability. Contributory negligence says that if you contributed to your injury in any way – say, you ignored warning signs, or were being reckless, or were otherwise being negligent or doing something illegal – then you have contributed to the injury.
If that’s the case, then you won’t receive any damages for your case.
Taking Action if You’ve Been Injured
The first step to take is to get medical attention.
The next step is to start documenting everything you can. You can take pictures of the scene, or have someone do it for you. You can get witness contact information. You can record your state of mind, your injuries, the pain and suffering you’re going through. You can also start keeping track of medical records and bills.
Contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as you can if you have a serious injury so they can begin helping you build your case. We’ll go over the case with you, ask questions, and evaluate what we think may happen with your particular situation to see if we can help you. If we can, we will.
Then, we’ll help collect evidence, interview witnesses, and put together a case so we can file suit and begin the adjudication process that will ultimately determine the fate of your case.
Slip and fall accidents happen frequently, but that doesn’t make them any less dangerous or scary. Contact a personal injury lawyer today for more information on what you can do and how you can seek justice.