It’s easy to dismiss a slip and fall accident as a minor mishap, but falls account for a quarter of all emergency room visits for injuries. If you slip or trip and fall in Albany, you may suffer broken bones, torn ligaments, damaged muscles or head injuries. Treatment for these conditions, plus the time you may miss from work, can strain your finances. The worst slip and falls may leave you with tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills, severe pain, or a permanent disability. But you do not have to suffer financially after a slip and fall accident. An Albany slip and fall lawyer can help you recover 100% of your costs.
At John Foy & Associates, we are dedicated to getting you the money you need to make as complete a recovery as possible. Our law firm has been representing victims of slip and falls and other accidents for over 20 years, and we are considered one of the preeminent personal injury firms in the state. We devote our practice exclusively to people who have been injured, and we would like to help you with a free consultation with our Albany slip and fall accident lawyers. Call us at 404-400-4000 and get your free consultation today.
How do I know if I have a slip and fall case?
Many people blame themselves for slipping and falling, but most of the time, the accident wasn’t your fault. You probably fell because there was a hazard that should not have been there, or because of unsafe conditions. That means that the accident was someone else’s fault, not yours.
Valid slip and fall cases can arise from any of these types of accidents:
- Slipping on something that was spilled on the floor of a store, restaurant or food court
- Tripping over uneven pavement
- Tripping on a step that isn’t marked
- Falling while going up or down stairs
- Tripping because the lighting was too dim to see clearly
- Falling from a window or over a railing
These cases are what we call “premises liability” cases. If you own property, you are legally required to make your property safe for visitors. If you don’t do this, you are considered “negligent.” A negligent property owner probably didn’t mean to hurt you and may in fact be someone you know and like. Negligence means that legally, the property owner wasn’t as careful as he or she should have been, and his or her insurance company must pay the cost of your injuries.
If I slipped and fell in Albany, are there things I can do to protect myself?
Yes. After any slip and fall accident, you should do what you can to advocate for yourself and begin building a legal case—even if you aren’t sure you were badly injured. This includes:
- Tell the owner or manager of the store, restaurant or facility that you fell and were injured. Be sure to talk to someone in charge, not just a low-level clerk. Get the person’s name and contact information.
- Take photos with your cell phone camera. Spills and other hazards tend to get cleaned up right away after a fall, so act quickly to get a picture of the hazard that caused you to fall. Also photograph the overall scene and any visible injuries you have.
- Talk to witnesses who may have seen your fall or the unsafe condition that caused it, such as an icy sidewalk or a spilled drink. Get their names and other contact information.
- Go to the doctor and get checked out as soon as possible after the accident. Slip and fall injuries can be more serious than they seem at first, and often they grow worse if you wait to treat them. In addition, insurance companies often claim that slip and fall victims are exaggerating their injuries to get more money. When you see a doctor right away, it shows that you knew from the beginning that your injures were serious enough to require treatment.
You should know that insurance companies want to make a profit, and they’ll do what they can to avoid paying your claim. Never say anything at the scene or to an insurance company representative that minimizes the seriousness of your injury, and never ever blame yourself for what happened. We’ve even seen insurance companies try to deny claims just because the injured person apologized to a store manager.
What if I slipped or tripped at someone’s house?
It doesn’t matter whether you fell at a store or restaurant or at someone’s house—you are still entitled to recover all your costs. However, many of our clients are reluctant to make a claim if they fell while visiting a friend or relative. Remember that when you make a claim, you are not attacking or blaming your friend. You are simply making a claim with their insurance company. Your friend will not have to be involved and will not have to pay money out of pocket. This is why people have insurance in the first place, and your friend will likely be pleased that their insurance can help you get the care you need.
How long can I wait to file a slip and fall accident claim in Albany?
In the City of Albany and Dougherty County, you must file an accident claim before a specific deadline known as the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is established by state and federal law, and will vary depending on the specific facts of your case.
- Most of the time, you have two years to file your claim
- In some cases you only have a few weeks
If you file your claim after the statute of limitations has expired, you probably will not be able to recover any money at all, and the local courts will dismiss your case. Waiting also makes it harder to collect evidence and prove your case. For these reasons, it is important to speak with a personal injury lawyer as soon as you can.
Talk to an Albany Slip and Fall Lawyer for Free
You should never have to pay for an injury that you didn’t cause. If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident, John Foy and Associates can help you get a full financial recovery for all your costs. Meet with us for a free consultation and we’ll discuss your case and show you how we can put our 20 years of experience to work for you. Call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.