For many, tripping and falling is a part of life, and is often attributable to run-of-the-mill clumsiness. But in some cases, a slip and fall accident can lead to injury—through no fault or inattention of your own—and may subject the property or “premises” owner to legal liability.
Read on to learn more about the main culprits behind slip and fall injuries, as well as the next steps you’ll want to take if you’re dealing with the physical and mental aftermath of your own slip and fall accident.
What Are The Most Common Causes of Slip and Fall Injuries?
Slip and fall accidents often result from a dangerous condition. These can include:
- Torn carpeting
- Broken or uneven tile
- A wet or soiled floor
- Poor lighting
- An unmarked step up or down
- Narrow stairs
- A broken or cracked sidewalk
- Paths that are icy or slippery with rain
- Any hidden hazards, like a grass-covered hole in the ground or a weak deck board that gives way when you step on it
Regardless of what type of hazard caused your accident, in order to recover any legal damages, you’ll need to have sustained some type of physical injury—that is, if you slip, fall, and get back up unscathed, you likely won’t have grounds for a lawsuit.
Who’s Responsible for Slip and Fall Accidents?
Even if you can prove that you were injured in an accident, in order to recover financial damages, you’ll need to establish each of three factors:
- You were an “invitee” on someone else’s property;
- You slipped and fell due to a dangerous condition on the property; and
- The property owner could (and should) have foreseen that this dangerous condition could injure a guest.
The first factor means that, if you were injured while trespassing on someone else’s property without permission, you may not have grounds to recover damages. And even if you can show that a dangerous condition on the property was what caused your fall, unless you can also show that the property owner knew (or should have known) about the dangerous condition and failed to correct it within a reasonable time.
What Should You Do After a Slip and Fall Accident?
If you’ve suffered an injury due to someone else’s negligence, you may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. Only an attorney who specializes in these cases can tell you whether your claim is likely to hold up in court. Because there are some state-specific time limits (called “statutes of limitation”) within which to file your lawsuit, seeking legal advice quickly can preserve your options.
The attorneys at Ginnis, Krathen, & Zelnick, P.A. can help. With decades of experience in just about every type of slip and fall case, our diligent and compassionate attorneys will fight for your rights and ensure you receive the compensation to which you’re legally entitled. To get started, fill out the short Do You Have a Case Form? on our website and one of our attorneys will be in touch.