Falls are the leading cause of emergency room visits, according to the National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI). Many people become injured after slipping and falling on wet or slippery floors. Victims can face costly medical bills, missed work time, and much more after this type of fall.
A slip and fall accident can be expensive and overwhelming in many ways. If you were hurt in this way, you might deserve compensation for your injuries. Property owners and businesses must do what they can to avoid harm to visitors and customers. If someone failed in their duty, they are responsible.
Our dedicated slip and fall accident lawyers can help. At John Foy & Associates, we have over 20 years of experience assisting victims to win what they deserve. To learn your options during a free consultation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.
Common Causes of Falls on Slippery Floors
Slips and falls can happen for many reasons. When someone owns or occupies a property, they must watch for wet or slippery floors. If a hazardous floor isn’t fixed quickly, someone could fall and hurt themselves.
Common causes of slippery floors on properties include:
- Weather conditions like rain, ice, or snow
- Spilled drinks or liquid products
- Slippery rugs or carpeting
- Food items left on the floor
- Fluid leaks
- Recently mopped or waxed floors
- Poor lighting
Employees must put out a warning sign when cleaning the floors. Otherwise, if someone slips and falls on a mopped floor, the business could be liable for the damages.
Slippery Floor Accident Injuries
Slipping and falling is a sudden—and often hazardous—situation. Many people don’t have time to catch themselves before falling. Even if they put out an arm or hand to catch their fall, they can suffer broken bones or sprains.
The type of injury varies by person. It might also depend on a person’s physical health, age, and more. Examples of injuries from slipping and falling on slippery floors include:
- Back injuries
- Neck injuries
- Broken arms, wrists, hips, or other broken bones
- Spinal cord injuries
- Shoulder sprains or strains
- Nerve damage
- Twisted ankles
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
Someone might fall onto a surface that causes more injuries. For example, a slip and fall victim might fall on a sharp corner or hazardous product. If the fall is severe, it can lead to death for some individuals.
Property Owners Have a Duty of Care
Under the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §51-3-1, an “owner or occupier of land” must “exercise ordinary care” to keep safe premises. If an owner or occupier is not careful, and there are injuries, the owner or occupier could be liable.
Property owners and businesses must keep their property as safe as possible. That includes making sure there are no slip and fall hazards on the floors. If someone slips and falls, it could be because the owner was negligent.
“Negligence” is key in a slip and fall case. Under legal terms, negligence means someone has been too careless. If you were hurt in a slip and fall, you must prove negligence by showing that:
- The owner or business had a duty of care to you.
- They failed in their duty of care (and were negligent).
- The negligence led to your slip and fall accident.
- You have injuries and damages from the fall.
Businesses do not like to take responsibility for slip and fall accidents. The owner will likely deny your claim or try to blame you. But thankfully, you don’t have to defend yourself alone.
An experienced slip and fall accident lawyer will be on your side. They can help show how the owner or business was negligent in your accident. If the business or insurance company pushes back, your lawyer will know how to fight.
To discuss your legal options during a free consultation, call John Foy & Associates. We’ll look at the facts and determine your options. Call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online today.
The Duty to Warn
Sometimes, an owner or business can’t immediately clean up a slippery floor. Maybe an employee is mopping or waxing. Or, perhaps there is a water leak that will take time to fix. In this type of situation, the owner or operator should warn customers.
If an owner knows about a slippery floor but doesn’t warn customers, they can be liable for slip and fall injuries. The owner might try to say they had no way of knowing about the slippery floor. But identifying hazards is part of their duty of owning or renting property.
Factors in a Slip and Fall Claim
Property owners have a legal duty to prevent harm to visitors and customers. If an owner fails in their duty, they could be responsible for an accident. If you were injured in a slip and fall, these details can help you know if you have a case:
How Long the Floor Was Slippery
An owner must have had enough time to notice and fix the slippery floor. For example, you might not have a case if you fell immediately after someone spilled onto the floor. But many slip and fall accidents happen because a hazard was present for too long.
Gather evidence about how long the floor was slippery before you fell.:
- If you can, take pictures and video of the hazard.
- Talk to any witnesses who might have noticed the slippery floor before you fell.
- Contact an experienced lawyer who can ask the right questions.
How the Floor Became Slippery
You’ll need to know how and why the floor was slippery. It’s not enough to know that there was a slippery floor. A floor could be slippery because of:
- Spilled food or drink products
- Melted ice or snow
- Tracked in rain from outside
- Oil or water leaks
- And much more
Knowing the source of the slippery floor will help you build your claim for compensation.
Whether There Were Warning Signs
Property owners should put out signs, cones, or other warnings if they can’t avoid slippery floors. If an owner didn’t warn customers, they are probably responsible for a slip and fall.
Speak with a Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer Today
If you suffered injuries after falling on a slippery floor, you might have a case. You could deserve full financial recovery for your medical bills, lost income, and more. To know your legal options, contact a slip and fall accident lawyer today.
At John Foy & Associates, we work on contingency only. That means there is no fee unless we win your case. To get started with a free consultation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.