Maryland Slip and Fall Lawyer

This video features Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks, a Business Law attorney based in Maryland.

What To Do If Injured On Someone Else’ Property

Video Transcript:

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

You just don't know when and where it's gonna happen. It's not something you're planning to do but it's usually because of negligence of someone else.

Rob Rosenthal: 

So if you slip, trip, or fall on someone's property and you're injured, do you know what your rights are and how to get help? We're gonna find out right now on this episode of Ask the Lawyer. My guest is Maryland Attorney Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks, and I remind you right off the top, if you'd like to ask Gwen-Marie questions of your own, it's easy, go to askthelawyers.com, click the button up at the top that says Ask a Lawyer, it'll walk you right through the process, or you can call the phone number you'll see on the screen while we're having our conversation. Gwen-Marie always a pleasure to see you. Thank you for helping us out.

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

Oh. It's always a pleasure to talk to you.

Rob Rosenthal: 

So how common are slip and fall, slip, trip, and fall injuries, and is it more so during the winter months when there's ice and that sort of thing?

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

I'll tell you right now, it is the snowfall and ice, and things like that. Yes, it's those types of cases that are very common, but also too, year-round too, you do see stairs poorly maintained, you'll see pavements not maintained, things, negligent activities year-round, but definitely we see it a lot during the winter months.

Rob Rosenthal: 

So give me... I know you can't cover all of them, but give me a couple of rules of thumb, maybe to help see if someone might have a case. Under what circumstances might someone have a case in these situations?

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

Well, you know what, if you slip and fall, or trip and fall down some stairs, or if you are on the ice, let's just say in a storm. One, did the business know the weather? That there was gonna be snow? Probably. Two, did they put the proper precautions down? Did they put down ice? Did they shovel? Did they put down the proper amount of ice? There is different ways or things you are to do during icy conditions to keep it safe. So, those are some of the things that we look into right away. We also have experts that we work with often that help us to investigate, to know what to look for in icy conditions. What happened and was it done properly and was it a negligent activity. Those are something that is very key and you should really hop on right away.

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

And another thing is too, Rob, when conditions occur, it's good if you don't have pictures or if the stairs weren't maintained to get pictures or to have an expert come down and take a look at it as well too. Because oftentimes things change and subsequent remedial measures like things, they change or fix stairs and you don't have oftentimes pictures and things like that, it's good to take photos if you can or have somebody else who's not injured nearby, take photos of what happened, those are really helpful later on as well too. So there's so many things that are so important in the beginning of these cases, you wanna call right away so that it's built properly. You wanna make sure that you can just focus on getting better, healing your fracture and whatever your injury is, and letting us get down and doing the investigation so that we can build your case up properly to get you what you deserve.

Rob Rosenthal: 

Where do you usually see these kinds of cases Gwen-Marie? Where are we talking like a grocery store, a shopping mall, school? Where do these tend to happen?

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

You name it, grocery stores, there could be spills. In Maryland you have to have notice. Did they know about the spill ahead of time, should they have known, was it open and obvious? A few... I've seen it in, you said grocery stores or stairs that were not properly maintained, you see potholes now, that happen, and did they have time to fix it? How long was the pothole there for, things like that. Manholes, you've seen it. Well, I've seen it, where this little things that should have been. Are trash cans removed, and they forget the little stick or pole that holds the trash can to the ground is left there and someone just had a case like that, and somebody came and tripped over it and had a big fracture. There are so many different cases. You just don't know when and where it's gonna happen. It's not something you're planning to do, but it's usually because of negligence of someone else, so you wanna make sure that you call us right away. I'm sorry Rob.

Rob Rosenthal: 

Is it different if you're dealing with, say, a business as opposed to like a city sidewalk or something that's municipally owned, is that...

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

So that's a good point. If it's a business, yes, you wanna obviously get a spoliation letter done, still get pictures, have experts retained, but if it's a city or a government, you wanna make sure you put them on notice right away, 'cause you can blow your statute of limitation on that, in Maryland, it's six months. In most places, if it's federal, it's two. Two years. But if it's six months for your local government, you have to put them on notice right away, and it must be done right, so you can't wait six months later and say, "Oh, hi, can I hire you? No." You might have blown your statute, so that's something that's a very good point, that you've gotta make sure you're aware of.

Rob Rosenthal: 

Sometimes people think, somebody trips and falls, they get a bruise, get a scrape, they move on. Can sometimes these be very serious injuries?

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

Yes, oftentimes you can just think, oh I fell that's it. I've seen it, you even get an x-ray immediately and there's no fracture. But, man, my thumb is not healing, what's going on? You go back later and get an MRI, torn ligaments, or something else, you've seen it all, so you wanna make sure that you're seeking treatment and getting it documented right away so that it's not being said, this could be for something else, because you didn't go to seek treatment right away, 'cause you thought, oh it would just get better.

Rob Rosenthal: 

Great advice, lots of great information as always, Gwen Marie. Thank you for helping us out and answering our questions.

Gwen-Marie Davis Hicks: 

Oh, you're welcome.

Rob Rosenthal: 

That's gonna do it for this episode of Ask the Lawyer. My guest has been Maryland Attorney Gwen Marie Davis Hicks. Remember, if you'd like to ask her questions about your situation, just go to askthelawyers.com, click the button up at the top that says, "Ask a lawyer," it'll walk you through the process, and it doesn't cost you anything to ask questions. Thanks for watching. I'm Rob Rosenthal with Ask the Lawyers.

Disclaimer: This video is for informational purposes only. In some states, this video may be deemed Attorney Advertising. The choice of lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisements.


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