Although not every slip-and-fall will result in severe injuries, millions of Americans are hospitalized each year after a slip, trip, or fall. Hospital bills and ongoing care from slip-and-fall accidents can be extremely expensive, costing thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and injuries like hip fractures and broken bones are more common than most people think.
Have you or a loved one been injured in a slip-and-fall accident in Vermont that wasn’t your fault? Did your injuries cause you pain and suffering or financial and emotional distress? If so please call me today to find out about your legal options. The call is free and my number is 802-888-7707.
You may have the right to file a claim and obtain compensation for your losses.
WHAT IS A SLIP-AND-FALL ACCIDENT AND HOW DO THEY HAPPEN?
“Slip-and-fall” is a term that refers to when someone trips, slips, or falls on someone else’s property and is injured as a result. Not all slip-and-fall accidents are someone’s fault. However, when the accident is the result of the act or lack of action by a negligent individual, corporation, or entity, they can be held accountable, and victims can be compensated for their injuries, pain, and suffering.
These are some locations where slip-and-fall accidents frequently happen:
• Wet floors. Floors in homes and businesses that are wet from being washed or from rainwater and are not properly marked can be dangerous and cause slip-and-fall accidents.
• Uneven or unstable surfaces can cause people to slip, fall, and seriously injure themselves. Businesses should have guard rails and proper signage to alert people to any unusual flooring or surfaces.
• Ramps and staircases should be properly maintained, clear of debris and have working handrails.
• Cluttered spaces. When debris is strewn about haphazardly, and a person is injured as a result, a slip-and-fall claim can be filed.
• Poorly lit spaces. Businesses and individuals have a responsibility to properly light their walkways, common areas, and business stations so that people don’t fall or trip.
Slip-and-fall accidents can happen to anyone anywhere. However, they often occur at these locations:
• Arenas and stadiums
• Restaurants and cafes
• Retail stores, shopping centers, malls, and grocery stores
• Retirement homes
• Business offices
• Private homes
• Public pools
• Amusement parks
While many slip-and-fall accidents result in minor injuries, this is not always the case. Sometimes people are gravely injured in slip-and-fall accidents that could and should have been prevented, and the resulting hospital and doctor visits can take a huge financial toll on them and their family.
Below are some of the more serious injuries that can result from slip-and-fall accidents:
• Broken bones. Though you can break any bone in a slip-and-fall accident, broken extremities such as the ankles, feet, toes, hands, wrists, and fingers are common. That’s because when you fall, your extremities are likely to make contact with the ground. Soft tissue injuries like wrist and ankle sprains are also common in slip-and-fall accidents.
• Hip fractures. This is one of the most serious types of slip-and-fall injuries and is especially dangerous for elderly people. Hip fractures require surgery and, in some cases, an artificial hip implant. Recovery time can be lengthy, and the cost of care extremely expensive. According to the CDC, over 95% of hip fractures are the result of slip-and-fall accidents.
• Head injuries. Hitting your head from a slip-and-fall accident can have severe repercussions that can last a lifetime. Concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are some of the worst types of injuries that can happen in a slip-and-fall accident. Unfortunately, falls are the most common cause of TBI’s.
• Back, neck, and spinal cord injuries. While less common, slip-and-fall accidents can result in fractured vertebrae, herniated discs, chronic back or neck pain, and in some cases, even temporary or permanent paralysis. These types of injuries sometimes require a lifetime of treatment and care.
If you were injured in a slip-and-fall accident that was not your fault, contact an experienced premises liability attorney as soon as possible.
UNDERSTANDING PREMISES LIABILITY AND SLIP-AND-FALL ACCIDENTS
Premises liability is the legal concept that comes into play in slip-and-fall accidents and personal injury cases when someone is injured because of unsafe conditions on another person’s or business’s property.
As responsible citizens and business owners, people are expected to keep their property safe for anyone who might legally be on it. When they fail to do so, they may be held accountable in a premises liability claim. However, just because you had an accident on an unsafe property does not mean you will win a premises liability case.
To win your premises liability slip-and-fall claim, you must prove the following:
• The defendant is legally responsible for the property where the accident occurred. For example, if you were injured in a movie theater, the liable party would most likely be the corporation that owns the theater.
• The owner was aware of the unsafe conditions on the property or should have been aware and neglected to take the right steps to remedy the problem.
• If the owner had exercised appropriate care, the accident could have been avoided.
• You were injured and suffered financial losses and/or pain and suffering as a result of the owner’s negligence.
Because premises liability law can be complicated and proving who is responsible for your slip-and-fall accident is not easy, you may need legal assistance to pursue you claim.
DO I NEED A SLIP-AND-FALL ACCIDENT ATTORNEY TO FILE A CLAIM?
Anyone can legally file a claim and represent themselves in court. However, because of the complex nature of slip-and-fall claims, having a knowledgeable attorney on your side can dramatically increase your chances of recovering fair and just compensation for your losses.
Proving that a property owner was negligent and that you suffered as a direct result of this negligence is the key to winning a slip-and-fall accident claim.
Ultimately, slip-and-fall claims are often difficult to prove because it’s not always clear who was at fault.
Slip and Fall Cases in Vermont – Do You Need a Lawyer?