Undoubtedly, slip and fall injury cases have gotten a bad name due to a few people who have taken advantage of the law. However, that is truly unjust in many cases.
If you have fallen on someone else’s property and seriously injured yourself, many aspects of your life may change. You may have to take time off work temporarily, or become permanently disabled and unable to complete the requirements of your particular job. Your loved ones will face the battle with you, possibly costing them time and money as well. Even if you generally recover, you may have a scar or other sign of the injury that may permanently affect your self-esteem and quality of life.
That’s why our personal injury attorneys have such a genuine desire to help you. You shouldn’t have to deal with the consequences of someone else’s negligence.
Do You Have a Valid Slip and Fall Injury Case?
To determine if you have a slip and fall injury case, contact one of our attorneys. We can go over the details with you to determine if you might want to file a lawsuit, although even then only a judge or jury can determine the answer regarding who was at fault.
Generally speaking, one of the most important aspects of these cases is to prove that the owner of the property was negligent. The idea is that the owner should have recognized the dangerous condition and been able to foresee to a certain point that someone could slip and fall because of it. Factors that will likely be considered include:
- The length of time that the dangerous condition existed
- Whether or not the owner was proactive in attempting to prevent it
- Whether or not the owner tried to remediate it
The property owner, in turn, might try to argue that the injury occurred because the injured individual was careless or reckless. The owner could also try to state that the danger existed for a viable reason or that the individual’s actions were unforeseeable.
In some cases, both parties may be at fault to a certain point.
Example of a Successful Slip and Fall Case
Nationally, one of the most well-known slip and fall cases is Holly Averyt’s 2007 claim against Wal-Mart. The commercial truck driver had slipped in grease while making a delivery to Wal-Mart in Greeley, Colorado. She suffered a ruptured disc in her spine and injured her shoulder and neck. Her attorney discovered that the city of Greeley had referenced the grease spill in a memorandum to Wal-Mart before the injury occurred.
The initial award in Averyt’s favor was $15 million, one of the highest awards ever in a slip and fall case.
Example of an Unsuccessful Slip and Fall Claim
A woman claimed that she slipped in a puddle of water inside a Walgreen’s in Indiana. Based on a lack of proof that the puddle of water existed, the case was dismissed.
After the woman appealed this decision, a higher court also threw the case out based on the idea that no one proved that the store had knowledge of the puddle’s existence. Even though it had been snowing, the court further said that the possibility of the existence of a hazard is not the same as knowledge of an actual hazard.
Slip and fall claims are submitted daily, and each has its own complex story to tell. If you believe you may have a case, call us at (734) 692-9200 to speak with one of our compassionate and experienced personal injury attorneys. You may also schedule a free consultation through our website.