How Serious is a Slip-and-Fall?

Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Phillip Chupik with Metier Law Firm.

How Serious is a Slip-and-Fall?
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Slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall lawsuits are notoriously and unfairly criticized for being frivolous when in reality, they can be quite serious. Injuries sustained in a slip-and-fall can be severe, and may include long-lasting or even permanent damages. Every property and business owner is required to follow certain rules regarding premises safety; if they fail to maintain a reasonably safe environment resulting in an injurious slip and fall accident, they may be considered liable.

A person who experiences significant injury as the result of a slip and fall can file a premises liability claim against the responsible party to help pay for relevant expenses including medical bills, lost wages, and more. If you or a loved one have been injured in a slip and fall accident, reach out to a premises liability attorney to discuss your options for physical and financial recovery.

Injuries which may be sustained in a slip-and-fall include the following:

  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Head, neck, or back trauma
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Brain injury
  • Internal bleeding
  • Paralysis
  • Death

Any of these injuries could result in significant medical bills, lost wages, and more. These and other damages should be compensated when the injury would not have occurred with proper attention to premises safety. Property owners who fail to create and maintain safe conditions for their visitors commit what is referred to as a “breach of duty of a care”. Except in specific circumstances such as when a trespasser or person with criminal intent is injured on the premises, property owners are considered liable for visitor safety.

Slip-and-fall injuries can be minor, but they can also be severe and life-altering.

While not every slip-and-fall accident is serious, they all warrant attention. When one slip-and-fall occurs, it opens the door for similar accidents to continue happening until the dangerous condition is corrected. Just because one slip-and-fall occurs without causing severe injury, it does not mean the next will be equally benign. Additionally, many injuries are not immediately evident; some injuries can take days or even weeks to become symptomatic, especially head injuries.

It is important to report the incident, take pictures, and seek medical care.

It’s a good idea to obtain an incident report from the property or business owner where the slip-and-fall occurred. This ensures that you have a record of what happens, and informs the owner of the premises so that corrective action can be taken. It’s also a good idea to take pictures at the scene of the accident, taking particular care to photograph any environmental factor which might have contributed to it. This could look like a broken step, railing, cracked sidewalk, or evident lack of warning signs on a wet floor. Finally, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible after slipping and falling. Many injuries are not immediately detectable, but seeing a doctor soon after the slip and fall ensures that you have a medical record documenting what happened, when, and what kind of physical injury was immediately apparent.

To learn more about slip and falls or for help filing a claim, reach out to a premises liability attorney.

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