Slip and fall accidents are some of the frequent causes of injuries today and can happen anywhere. You might consider launching a lawsuit after slip and fall accident caused by dangerous conditions on business and private buildings. This will help you cover the medical bills and revenue lost during the period.
There are four elements in a slip and fall injury claim; the Injured person, Property owner, a dangerous condition and Damages.
Slip and fall cases payouts occur only after the injured and the property owner has come to an agreement, either through settlement or court ruling.
Common Injuries of Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall injuries vary from small bruises and bump to physical disabilities. Among them all, these are some of the most common;
- Head injuries
Most people tend to fall and hit the head causing slight head injuries which leads to minor concussions. These can clear up after some time on their own. A serious head injury might cause brain trauma which can lead to an inability to function. It is important you visit a doctor irrespective of any the head injury. At times the can be symptoms can be minimal as compared to the effects. Visiting a doctor also provides documentation important for your lawsuit.
- Spinal cord injuries
Injuries to spinal cords are caused by compression or severing. The injury requires detailed health care that can run for quite a long time. It might end up costing millions in medical bills. Injury to the higher spinal cord can cause full-body paralysis while on the lower spinal cord can cause lower limbs paralysis.
- Broken bones
Falling can cause both minor fractures to the bones that can easily heal and extensive injuries that require surgery to restore. You might also need therapy to help restore the tissues around the bones. You should consider medical attention and an X-ray to determine the extent of the bone damage.
- Back and neck injuries
Another common injury from slip and fall is slipped or broken lower neck discs and the spinal tissues. An extensive neck back injury can be life-threatening and can render you physically disabled. You might experience similar injuries to a car accident, hence, similar compensation to average settlement for slips and fall knee injury.
The Process for Making a Slip and Fall Injury Claim
You must follow the right procedure after a slip and fall injury to help your chances of winning the potential claim. This is how to go about it;
1. Report accident to the premises owner
Report the accident to the person in charge of the building immediately. Most probably that very day or the next at worst. This will help to legitimize your case and avoid any question on foul play.
You can even opt for a notification letter if at all you cannot reach the person in charge as quickly.
2. Get Witnesses
You might find it tough to convince a juror or judge of your slip and fall claim without witnesses. You should, therefore, get the names and contacts of those present during the accident to help as witnesses.
3. Take Pictures
You need evidence to show the condition of the place when the accident occurred. You should take a lot of pictures on a camera or phone of the scene in different angles. Feel free to ask a family or friend to take the pictures you are not in a position yourself. Taking pictures before the place is fixed will show the exact condition and how it might have contributed to your fall.
4. Seek medical attention
Seek medical attention immediately irrespective of the extent of the injury. This will help you determine the severity of the injury and provide the best solution. It is also important in proving the damage during the lawsuit.
5. Fill Accident Report Forms
Most commercial property offers an accident report form to sign in case of a claim. You can choose to either decline or accept to fill it. If you agree then make sure you fill it correctly.
6. Never Talk to the insurer without a lawyer
Most insurers will contact you immediately you file a suit to try get you to record a statement. You need to have a lawyer when doing this.
7. Adhere to medical schedules
Stick to your medical appointments and schedules. It will help demonstrate and validate the severity of your slip and fall injury.
Who is Liable for Your Slip and Fall Injury?
There can be several parties liable for a slip and fall injury other than just the owner. These include; the property manager, a contractor working on the property, a tenant or other employees and agents in the building.
The labiality is determined by the duty to make the building safe and free of danger for the users. The ones responsible should protect users from foreseeable hazards.
You are not legally entitled to compensation if at all you trespass a building. You must also be in a position to prove the cause of your injury as the management’s fault. Your ability to prove the causation will determine who takes the liability for the slip and fall.
Calculating Compensation Worth
There are a lot of variables looked into on a slip and fall settlement calculator. These variables include;
- Medical bills
The slip and fall cases payouts should be able to cover all the medical bills you incurred while seeking treatment for injuries resulting from the slip and fall. You also include the amount you will incur for subsequent bills if need be. Therefore, the amount you receive will be determined by how much it costs to treat your case.
- Lost wages
You should be compensated for the revenue you lost when you are away from work due to the injuries from the slip and fall incident. The amount of your compensation, in this case, is determined by how much you could have made if you had worked, and tax deducted.
- Suffering and pain
Calculating the worth of pain and suffering during an accident can be a little tricky given it is not measurable or quantifiable. It is therefore based on other variables like medical bills and how long it will take to heal fully.
- Lost earning capacity
Some injuries can render you incapable to perform your tasks like you used to before the slip and fall accident such that your earnings are affected. You will find an expert to determine the value of your loss sue to the lost production capacity. The insurer will then compensate you in either a one-time large amount based on reduced earnings or getting you educated in a different field altogether.
- Additional expenses
There are some other accompanying expenses like on food or special equipment directed by the doctor during the medication period. You can be compensated the worth of the additional expenses if you can show a relation between them and the injury.
Trial or Settling Trends in Slip and Fall Cases
Most cases involving slip and fall tend to settle before going to trial. The ones that get to trial are most likely to lose with only 5% getting to win the case. This is believed to be because most jurors are hard on slip and fall as they have low liability, easily attainable by the claimant even without the compensation, unlike commercial policies like auto insurance that have harder to achieve liabilities.
These are some of the factors that determine the success of your case;
- Experience of your Lawyer
To improve your chances of getting the compensation you should find yourself a lawyer who is experienced in the slip and fall cases. An experienced lawyer in most cases have worked with the judge you will face hence knows what makes them tick. Playing to the judges’ emotions can easily boost your chances of winning.
- Company habits
The type of store you are using is also a factor if you will get compensation. Some stores are generally hard to work against slip and fall cases. They hide and destroy evidence thus hurting your chances of compensation. You can easily know what to expect from a company by studying their behavior studying on previous similar suits. Studying them will also help you gauge the amount you are most likely to get in case you win.
- Store Display
One of the factors that determine the success of your compensation claims is how the storefront its shelves. The positioning of the products determines client vision and how they perceive the environment. It is, therefore, important that you study the evidence video for how people are walking in the store and if it contributes to your slip and fall incident.
To Sum it Up
In conclusion, making a slip and fall injury claim is not the easiest lawsuit you will ever face. You need to make a valid claim through evidence and witnesses. This is to prove causation and determining liability. Having a slip and fall pay-out is not assured even if you believe you have a strong case not unless you have a qualified and experienced lawyer. Besides, make sure you seek medical attention immediately and stick to the schedule.