Absolutely. Whenever someone slips and falls, or trips and falls, there’s a chance it was because of some hazard or obstacle that shouldn’t have been there. If that’s the case, the property owner (or business) may be liable for the injury. And that means you have the right to sue to recover money for your slip and fall. However, a full-fledged lawsuit often isn’t necessary.
Whether you can sue (or need to) will depend on:
- How the accident happened & whose fault the accident was
- Whether you’re able to get the money you need from the liable party’s insurance company without a lawsuit
We’ll look at these factors in detail below.
What kind of slip and fall accidents give me the right to a lawsuit?
In Georgia, the law says that those who own or manage a property have a duty to keep it safe for the people who use it. The amount of responsibility they have depends on whether the people on the property would have been expected to be there (such as customers, employees, residents, or guests) or whether they would not have been expected to be there (for example, kids wandering onto an abandoned property). But in both cases, the property owner still has at least some responsibility to keep the place safe.
That means that, in most cases, if there was an unsafe obstacle or some condition that could cause slipping, and the management/owner didn’t do anything to make it safe again, they are liable for any injury it causes.
In other words, if a person trips on their own shoelaces in a store, the store probably can’t be sued. But if the person trips on some debris that was left out in the aisle, or on an uneven section of pavement, the store is probably liable.
Do I need to sue, or can I get the money from insurance?
The best thing you can do after any slip and fall, no matter whose fault you think it is, is to sit down for a case review with a lawyer. You can often get this review for free, and it will help you get a clear professional opinion on whether you have a claim. However, in most cases, a lawyer will do the following:
- They will investigate and gather info on your case
- They’ll file a claim with the store/property owner’s insurance company—not a lawsuit
- They will bargain with the insurer to get you the maximum amount possible
- Only if this fails will they move to filing a lawsuit
In other words, a lawyer can often get you the money you need with no lawsuit at all—even if the store owner originally told you they weren’t paying anything. And in many cases, the lawyer can get you far more money than you would have gotten on your own.
Talk to a Slip and Fall Lawyer for Free
Not every lawyer has the same level of experience with slip and fall cases. At John Foy & Associates, we’ve been winning these cases for over 20 years. Let us help you. Call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your free consultation today.