A “slip and fall” sounds like a minor, embarrassing incident, but slip and fall accidents can cause serious injuries. In Dunwoody, we often see slip and fall victims with broken bones, severe sprains, and muscle and joint injuries. These injuries can be not only life-altering, but expensive—and you do not have to bear the cost alone. You need to talk to a Dunwoody slip and fall lawyer.
The lawyers at John Foy & Associates have been getting money for slip and fall victims for more than 20 years. We began as a small local law office with a simple goal: to help accident victims get the money they need to recover as completely as possible from their injuries. We still have that same mission, even though we are now one of the largest and most highly respected law firms in the state. Let us give you a free consultation and explain what our Dunwoody slip and fall lawyers can do for you. Call us at 404-400-4000 and get your free consultation today.
How do I know if I have a valid slip and fall claim?
You probably have a valid claim if you were hurt in a fall you didn’t cause. It’s always tempting to blame yourself and think about what you could have done differently. But most of the time, people fall because of a hazard, an obstacle, or an unsafe situation. When this happens, you legally are not at fault and it’s likely you have a valid claim.
There are many types of slip or trip and fall accidents. Some of the ones we see most often include:
- Slipping on a spilled product or drink in a store, restaurant or food court
- Tripping on damaged or uneven sidewalks or other paved surfaces
- Stumbling on an unmarked step
- Falling on stairs
- Tripping in an area that is not well lit
- Falling from a window or over a railing
These types of accidents usually fall under “premises liability” laws. Premises liability means that property owners have a legal responsibility to keep their property safe for people who use or visit it. Property owners who don’t keep their premises safe are negligent. This means they are legally liable for any injuries that occur there, even if they did not intend to hurt anyone. When a property owner is liable under premises liability laws, the property owner’s insurance company must pay your costs and damages.
I slipped and fell in Dunwoody. What should I do?
If you need immediate medical attention, make that your first priority. Otherwise, we recommend you take some simple steps to advocate for yourself and start building evidence for your claim. Here are some things you can do while you are still at the scene of your injury:
- If you are in a store, mall or restaurant, report the accident to the owner or manager. It is important to talk to someone in charge, not just a clerk. Be sure to tell them you were injured, and get the name and contact information for the person you talked to.
- Take photos or video. Often, the hazard that caused you to fall will be cleaned up fairly quickly. As soon as you can, use your cell phone camera to shoot photos or video of the scene, your injuries, and any conditions that caused or contributed to your fall. These images can be powerful evidence in your claim.
- Speak with witnesses. People who rush over to help may have seen you fall, and other people in the area may have observed the condition that caused it. Find out what they saw and get their contact information.
- Go to the doctor. Just because you don’t need to rush to the emergency room doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get medical attention. Always see a doctor as soon as possible after a slip and fall injury. There are two reasons for this. First, the best time to treat an injury is right after it happens. Over time, injuries can grow more serious or develop complications, making them harder to treat and delaying your recovery. Second, a common insurance company tactic in slip and fall cases is to claim the victim is exaggerating his or her injuries. It’s easier to make a strong claim if you have gotten a doctor’s diagnosis right away.
Insurance companies operate for profit, and they’ll do anything they can to avoid paying out any more than they absolutely have to. Be careful not to say anything that minimizes your injury or accepts the blame for your fall. Anything you say—including a simple “I’m sorry”—can be used against you.
What if I fell at a friend or relative’s house?
Your rights are the same regardless of where you fell. You are entitled to recover 100% of your cost and damages. However, we understand that you may be reluctant to make a claim against a friend, neighbor or relative. No one wants to damage a relationship or force someone they care about to pay for medical bills. But your claim is not against your friend personally. It is a claim against their insurance, usually a homeowner’s policy. The insurance company will handle everything and your friend will not have to pay you out of their own pocket. An unexpected fall is exactly the kind of situation that insurance is designed for, and chances are, your friend will be relieved that there is insurance money available to pay for your care.
Is there a time limit for a slip and fall claim in Dunwoody?
All accident claims in the City of Dunwoody are subject to state and federal laws known as statutes of limitations. A statute of limitations is simply a time limit for filing a claim. If you file your claim after the statute of limitations has expired, the local courts will probably dismiss your case and you will be unable to get any money at all for your accident.
Because of this, it is important to know the deadline for filing your slip and fall claim.
- For many accident victims, the deadline is two years after the date of the accident
- For some, however, the deadline may only be a matter of weeks or months
The statute of limitations that applies to you will depend on your situation. To avoid giving up your rights, discuss this with a good personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after your accident.
Talk to a Dunwoody Slip and Fall Lawyer for Free
At John Foy & Associates, we believe you should never have to pay for an injury that was someone else’s fault. We’ve been helping slip and fall victims recover money for more than 20 years. Let us give you a free consultation and explain how we can help you get started with your claim. Call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.