Slip and fall accidents occur suddenly and unexpectedly. Falls can be dangerous to anyone, but especially for older adults. In fact, slip and fall accidents are one of the most common causes of serious and even fatal injuries. If you have suffered a slip and fall injury in Pennsylvania, contact a fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA families trust today.
A victim of a fall accident may be able to file a premises liability lawsuit to get financial compensation for losses their injuries have caused. This is commonly referred to as a slip and fall case. The law says that property owns have a legal responsibility to keep their property free of hazards and failure to do so can leave them liable for the victim’s damages.
What is a Slip and Fall Lawsuit?
A slip and fall lawsuit is a type of personal injury lawsuit that falls under the umbrella of premises liability law. Premises liability occurs when an injury was caused due to an unsafe or defective condition on another person or business’ property. A slip and fall case refers to accidents in which an individual slips, trips, or falls on a hazardous surface and hurts themselves.
A fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA trusts can help you to recover damages when someone else’s negligence caused your slip and fall and you were injured as a result of that fall. Working with an experienced Philadelphia slip and fall attorney can help you get the financial compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Injuries from Slip and Fall Accidents
The impact force on the body hitting the ground or a hard floor can cause fractured bones, especially wrist and arm bones. Knees and hips are also at a higher risk of breaking in a fall. Other serious injuries include joint dislocation, bruises, and sprains. More serious injuries include injuries to the brain, back discs, spinal cord, or even death.
These injuries often result in significant medical expenses. Many require hospitalization and extended rehabilitation. Sometimes these injuries persist for years and require extensive follow-up or subsequent surgeries. Some individuals require medical home care or need to purchase medical equipment following an accident. A fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA counts on can help seek compensation for the injuries you sustained from someone else’s negligence.
Common Causes of Fall Injuries
Fall accidents with injury happen every day in areas such as retail stores, grocery markets, work sites, and restaurants. Property owners have a responsibility to keep areas free of hazards for visitors. When they fail to uphold that duty, a visitor on the property may suffer an injury. Common causes of slip and fall injuries include:
- Flooring that is in disrepair, such as cracked pavement, loose tiles, or carpet that has become unglued.
- Tripping hazards, such as wires or cords that are strewn across the floor and not properly organized and secured
- Spills of slippery liquids that have not been properly cleaned up. These hazards are often found in restaurants, grocery stores, and gas stations
- Handrails that are missing or broken can lead to serious injuries such as fractures and brain injuries. It is particularly important that establishments, such as nursing homes, that serve individuals with vision or balance deficits have safety railings in place and in good condition.
- Falls from a buildup of snow or ice that the property owner has not properly removed from the entryway of a store or business.
- Obstructed pathways that become hazards to pedestrians. For example, a store that is restocking shelves and has not properly warned individuals to avoid boxes strewn on the ground
- Inadequate lighting that prevents a visitor on the property from noticing hazards, such as cords on the floor or a staircase.
Property owners may be liable if they created a dangerous condition on their property. For example, a nursing home maintenance worker is cleaning the floors with a slippery wax. He does not use any warning signs to notify guests that the floors have just been waxed. Directly after applying the wax, a visitor walked across the floor, fell, and broke their hip. The nursing home may be liable for the visitor’s injury.
Additionally, property owners may be liable if they fail to fix or repair a hazardous or dangerous condition on their property. For example, a restaurant owner has been notified by multiple guests that a handrail in the restroom stall is loose. Despite these notifications, the property owner fails to repair the handrail. After days have passed, another customer uses the handrail and it falls off the wall, causing the customer to fall and break their arm. The restaurant may be liable for the customer’s injury.
Slip and fall accidents are often the result of building code violations or negligent maintenance of a property. Contact a fall injury lawyer Philadelphia, PA trusts at the Wieand Law Firm to learn about your rights and see if you may be eligible to file a claim.
After a bad slip and fall accident, victims are often shaken and confused on what steps to take next. There are several steps that you can take immediately after a slip and fall accident to help recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
1: Seek Medical Attention
The most important thing to do after a fall injury is to seek medical attention. Adrenaline after a fall can mask a serious injury, so be sure to have a thorough exam by a qualified medical provider. Request that the medical provider document the scope of your injuries and include your account of how the injury occurred.
2: Gather Evidence: Including Photographs or Videos
If at all possible, take some photographs or videos of the dangerous condition that caused you to fall. Additionally, get the contact information of any witnesses who can verify what happened. Gathering evidence as quickly as possible after the accident can be critical in proving you slip and fall case. Many times, a hotel or retail establishment will quickly repair the problem following an accident, and you can lose the chance to gather important evidence for your claim.
3: Report the Incident
Report the incident to the appropriate person and complete an incident report. Depending on the specific circumstances of your situation, the person to report your injury to may vary. For example, if you fell due to a faulty handrail in a hotel, you may want to ask for the hotel manager or shift supervisor. Ask the property owner for a copy of the incident report and review it for accuracy.
4: Contact a Fall Injury Lawyer Philadelphia PA Trusts
As soon as feasible, contact a fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA counts on to litigate these types of claims. There is a strict statute of limitations on personal injury lawsuits in Pennsylvania, so it’s important to speak with an attorney to explore your legal options.
5: Complete Medical Treatment
Complete the recommended medical treatment for your injuries. Failing to follow through with the medical recommendations of your health care providers can harm any potential slip and fall case you may have.
What NOT to Do After a Slip and Fall Accident
Knowing what not to do following a slip and fall accident is very important. A Philadelphia slip and fall lawyer recommends the following:
- Do not provide a statement regarding the accident to an insurance adjuster prior to speaking with an attorney. The adjuster works on the behalf of the insurance company and may try to minimize or dismiss your claim. It is OK to provide basic contact information.
- Do not accept a settlement offer offered by an insurance company prior to discussing the settlement with a lawyer you trust.
Can I Afford to Hire a Philadelphia Fall Injury Lawyer?
The Philadelphia slip and fall lawyers at the Wieand Law Firm work on a contingency fee contract. This fee arrangement is intended to give injured victims the access to qualified legal representation, as there are no out-of-pocket costs. You can get the maximum financial compensation for your injuries without any up-front costs or hourly fees. In fact, you will pay nothing unless our firm is successful in winning money for your case.
A fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA depends on can be your greatest asset when pursuing a slip and fall lawsuit. The lawyers at our firm have extensive experience protecting the rights of accident victims and pursing full compensation for their injuries. A Philadelphia slip and fall lawyer can help manage all aspects of your lawsuit including:
- Collecting evidence
- Gather medical records
- Calculate your medical expenses and projected future medical expenses from the injury
- Procure experts to assist with your case
- Handle legal paperwork and deadlines
- Negotiate aggressively with insurance companies
Please realize that the defendants in these cases have lawyers through their insurance companies that will try to refute your claims. That’s why you need the experience of a Philadelphia slip and fall lawyer to stand up for your right for compensation for your injuries.
Premises Liability Elements
In order to be successful in a premises liability lawsuit, a victim – often through their Philadelphia slip and fall lawyer – must prove the following elements exist in their case:
- The property owner owed a duty of care to the victim. Every property owner is legally liable to maintain a property safe and free of hazards in order to protect anyone who has permission to be on the property.
- The property owner failed to meet that duty of care: If the owner failed to repair a hazard that they knew about, should have known about, or failed to warn visitors about the hazard.
- The property owner was directly responsible for the victim’s injuries: The victim’s injuries would not have happened if it wasn’t for the property owner’s negligence. For example, if the victim suffered injuries as a result of a fall caused by a broken handrail, a direct responsibility exists – if not for the broken handrail, the victim would not have fallen and would not have suffered injuries.
- The victim has suffered damages because of their injuries: The victim must have economic and/or non-economic losses because of their injuries. Examples include medical expenses, loss of income, pain, and suffering, emotional anguish, permanent disability, and more.
If you have suffered a slip and fall injury, Wieand Law Firm, LLC can help. Contact our office to schedule a free and confidential consultation to find out what your legal options may be against the property owner where the accident occurred. Our firm will aggressively advocate for you to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve under the law. Don’t go it alone. Call our office today to find out how we can help.
How Much Is My Slip and Fall Case Worth?
Clients frequently request projections on how much their slip and fall case may be worth. This answer varies significantly from client to client based on the specific factors affecting their case. Slip and fall lawsuits in Pennsylvania and New Jersey can receive verdicts that result in six- or seven-figure outcomes. Slip and fall cases with severe injuries, such as traumatic brain injury or when an accident leaves a person paralyzed, typically render higher payouts that cases with less severe injuries.
What Types of Compensation Are Available in a Slip and Fall Case?
Compensation awards for slip and fall cases can typically be broken down into 3 categories. A fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA relies on will look at the specifics of your case and work closely with you to determine what damages you may be eligible for. Our firm will seek the best possible outcome for your case and work to make sure you get full compensation for your injuries.
The damages in a slip and fall accident lawsuit can include:
These damages are compensation for expenses that have a dollar value. Slip and fall victims typically incur expensive medical treatments, such as:
- Hospital bills
- Medication invoices
- Rehabilitation expenses
- Home Care
- Medical devices
- Transportation costs
- Lost wages
A fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA relies on will help calculate the economic damages in your claim to help seek full compensation for your damages. In many cases, expenses need to be calculated for both past expenses as well as anticipated future expenses and losses. For example, you may have already undergone surgery following your fall, but may need additional surgery in the future. Or, your injuries may prevent you from returning to work in you previous capacity and you may lose wages in the future. A skilled Philadelphia slip and fall lawyer trusts will work with experts to calculate all economic damages to help assure you get the maximum compensation for your losses.
These damages are to account for losses in a slip and fall accident that do not have a direct dollar value. Depending on the specifics of your case, you may be eligible for damages such as:
- Physical pain and suffering – chronic pain can persist for months and years following your accident
- Emotional pain and suffering – mental anguish – including insomnia, fear and frustrating – can affect an individual after a fall
- Loss of self–esteem – this damage may be applicable if the accident resulted in scarring or permanent disability that affected your self-worth
- Loss of consortium – In cases in which a slip and fall case results in a fatality, the family members of the victim may be able to seek compensation from suffering from the death of their loved one
By working closely with a fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA depends on, you can feel confident that your case will be closely reviewed for non-economic damages for which you may be eligible to receive compensation.
In some situations, you may be eligible for punitive damages after a slip and fall accident. Punitive damages are an additional award above economic and non-economic damages that are intended to punish the person or entity that was liable for your injury. These damages are often awarded to deter a defendant from repeating their negligence or misconduct in the future. Punitive damages may be awarded when the plaintiff proves that the defendant acted maliciously or in wanton or willful disregard of the plaintiff’s rights.
Plaintiffs who wish to pursue punitive damages must include this request in their initial complaint. It may not be possible to add these damages after the original complaint is filed. Therefore, it’s important to consult with a qualified fall injury lawyer Philadelphia PA counts on as soon as possible following your injury.
Call today to speak with a Philadelphia slip and fall lawyer at the Wieand Law Firm. We offer a free case review and consultation to help understand your situation and outline the legal options available to you. Call 215-666-7777 to speak directly with an attorney, or complete the online form on this website.