Slip and fall accidents can be so expensive, not to mention confusing and frustrating, for the injury victim. If you were hurt from slipping and falling on someone’s property, you probably have medical bills, missed work time, and more to juggle. Thankfully, according to the laws in Georgia, you may be entitled to compensation for your slip and all injury.
Property owners and businesses in Georgia have certain responsibilities they must meet for those who come onto their property. If they don’t uphold their legal duties, they can be liable for injuries. To understand exactly how this relates to your compensation, read on below.
A Property Owner’s Duty of Care in Georgia
When a landowner or occupier (like a business) in Georgia invites, leads, or induces others to come onto their property, they must ensure safe premises. The owner or occupier should “exercise ordinary care” to maintain that safety. If they breach their duty and someone gets injured, the owner or business may be liable for damages (Georgia Code § 51-3-1).
So, if there’s a chance the owner or business (or a manager or employee) was negligent in our slip and fall injury, you may be entitled to compensation.
The Definition of Negligence
The legal definition of negligence is the failure to act in a way that someone else of “ordinary prudence” would behave in similar circumstances. Someone can be negligent by performing a careless action or by failing to perform an action that would prevent harm.
Businesses can be negligent when they fail to uphold certain safety standards that protect visitors or customers from danger. For example:
- Spilled food or beverage items in a grocery store aisle pose a slip and fall accident hazard to shoppers.
- If the store’s employees do not clean up or warn shoppers about the spill within a reasonable amount of time, it’s a form of negligence.
- If a shopper gets hurt after slipping and falling on the spilled item, the store can be found liable because they were negligent in fixing the hazardous condition.
You Will Need to File for Compensation
If a property owner or store is found to be liable for your slip and fall injury, you won’t automatically receive compensation. You’ll need to file a personal injury claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company. Your injury claim should demonstrate:
- That the property owner or business owed you a duty of care (as mentioned above)
- How the owner or business breached their legal duty and was negligent in your accident
- That your slip and fall injury was caused by that breach of duty
- The damages you suffered because of the slip and fall accident and your injury
It’s highly recommended that you work with an experienced Georgia slip and fall accident lawyer to file your claim. You will need to have a strong case and solid proof of your damages. You’ll also need to know how much compensation you are owed, which can take time to calculate, especially if you are still being treated for your injury.
Factors That Determine Your Eligibility for Compensation
When looking at whether or not you can seek compensation from the property owner or business, you’ll need to ask questions like whether or not:
- The hazard was present long enough for any reasonable person to have fixed it or warned others about it
- The business had a regular process for checking for potentially dangerous conditions
- The hazardous condition could have been prevented
- The hazard had a good reason for being in the location it was when you slipped and fell
These are questions your Georgia slip and fall accident lawyer will also ask when looking at your case.
Negotiating with the Insurance Company
A lawyer can make sure all damages are accounted for so you aren’t left paying for more costs of the accident down the road. The owner or business’s insurance company will look for ways to reduce the value of your settlement and pay you less.
A lawyer will protect your rights and make sure you the business or insurance company does not take advantage of you. They can act as your biggest advocate and negotiate with the insurance adjuster for the settlement you actually deserve.
Talk to a Slip and Fall Lawyer in Georgia for Free Today
There’s a good chance you are entitled to compensation for your slip and fall injury. John Foy & Associates can answer all your questions and evaluate your case for FREE. Call us for a FREE consultation at (404) 400-4000. We’ll discuss the details of your case and how we can help. Call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to get started.