Slip and fall accidents happen every day in Fayetteville and the surrounding area. In most situations, they are minor and may only cause small cuts or bruises. But, some accidents can result in serious injuries that cause long-term harm. Falls that result in hospital visits or chronic problems can affect you for the rest of your life. In those situations, it may be a good idea to look into your legal options if you fell on someone else’s property. A Fayetteville slip and fall lawyer can help with this process.
John Foy & Associates has over 20 years of experience helping slip and fall victims. We never work for insurance companies. Our team wants to assist victims after an accident by getting them the medical treatment and money damages they need to get back on track. Slip and fall accidents can significantly impact your life, and we know that getting back to how you were before the accident may not be possible—but we will help you get as close as you can. Let us give you a free consultation. Call us at 404-400-4000 and get your free consultation today.
How do you determine who is legally responsible after a slip and fall accident?
Property owners must maintain their property so that they don’t cause harm to others who visit. When maintenance is poor or another issue that the property owner could have fixed causes your fall, the property owner may be legally responsible for your resulting injuries. In situations where someone else maintains the property (like a landlord or property manager), that person or entity may also be partially at fault. In many cases, if you fell in a store, it’s the store owner.
Generally, you must prove one of the three fact scenarios is true. The property owner or someone who works on behalf of the owner (such as an employee or third-party maintenance provider):
- Caused the problem that resulted in your slip and fall.
- Knew about the danger or hazard and did nothing to correct it.
- Should have known about the danger because a “reasonable” property owner who is taking good care of their property would have known about it.
In most slip and fall cases, the “should have known” situation will come into play. Although it’s the most common, it’s also the hardest to prove. Generally, you must show that the property owner would have known about the danger if they would have bothered to look. You might be able to show this by indicating that the property owner doesn’t do regular checks of the property or that the condition had been there for a long time.
While there are situations where a third-party may also be to blame, the general rule is that the property owner bears the ultimate responsibility when it comes to ensuring people are not injured on their property.
What happens if I was partially at fault for my fall?
Falling because of your own carelessness is pretty common. People trip over their own feet all the time. In those situations, you likely don’t have a legal claim because the only person to blame is yourself. But, many people make the mistake of assuming that their slip and fall was all their fault when it truly wasn’t.
For example, imagine you tripped over a raised portion of the sidewalk while walking on someone else’s property. While you may write off the situation by thinking that you should have been paying more attention, you actually might have a legal claim. Think about the following questions related to this incident:
- Was the uneven sidewalk marked or roped off?
- Was the raise in the sidewalk hard to see or obscured by something?
- If you had been watching, could you have seen it from your angle?
- What were you doing just before the fall? Running? Jumping?
When the object or condition that caused your fall was hard to see, or it was covered by something, you are more likely to be able to get money damages for your fall. There are situations where the shadows, wet conditions, glare, or other issues will block your eyesight. In those circumstances, you may not have been able to see the condition even if you were watching closely.
The best way to know if you have a slip and fall claim is to talk to the personal injury lawyers at John Foy & Associates. Give us the details, and we will have you determine what your next steps should be.
Do I need a certain level of damages for a slip and fall claim?
There is no minimum level of damages for a legal claim that you assert in court. The only thing that you have to show is that you were injured and the fall caused your injuries.
Even if you don’t think that you suffered very much in injuries, you may be surprised just how far your damages extend. For instance, think about how much money you spent on hospital bills and time away from work.
Consider a straightforward ankle injury as an example. You may have sprained your ankle as a result of a fall on an uneven surface. You likely went to the doctor to get it examined to ensure it wasn’t broken. You may have had follow up treatment to be sure that your movement was improving after the initial hospital visit. You might have even taken a day or two off of work, particularly if you work in a job that requires you to be on your feet all day. You wouldn’t have had to incur any of those costs if you hadn’t fallen. All of those seemingly minor costs add up quickly—and they don’t even consider the pain and suffering damages that you may be entitled to receive.
Talk to a Fayetteville Slip and Fall Lawyer
If you slipped and fell on someone else’s property, it’s worth the time and effort to set up a free consultation with our team. We can help you figure out whether you have a case. The process is free, and there is no obligation to retain our firm. Let us give you a FREE consultation. Call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.