The Verdict: The Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall

On this week’s episode of The Verdict, we sat down with Bryan Partner Kathryn Knotts to discuss slip and fall and premises liability. Premises liability is a tricky area of the law. Understanding your next steps in a slip and fall is crucial to securing justice. 

Episode highlights:

  • What premises liability is in relation to slip and falls
  • The conditions necessary to file a viable lawsuit
  • Injuries that often result from slip and falls or trip and falls
  • How slip and falls differ from other personal injury cases
  • Who can be sued in a slip and fall
  • When you should see a doctor

Client story

Carlson Law Firm client Cassie Kavanaugh filed a lawsuit against the Early Rudder Freeway Stripes in Bryan. Kavanaugh stopped at the store to use the restroom and purchase items. When she exited the restroom, an unmarked wet floor caused her to slip, fall and hit her shoulder against the floor. Just moments earlier a Stripes employee cleaned the restroom but left no visible wet floor sign in the location she fell.

Wet floor signs are important in warning people to step with caution on slippery and slick surfaces.

“I knew from my training in nursing that I needed to file an incident report with the store,” Kavanaugh said. “To them, if it’s not documented, then it never happened.”

Kavanaugh said the manager on duty asked her a series of questions in an attempt to shift the blame. She knew that she needed to ask for a copy of the incident report she filled out. The manager gave her a phone number to call to receive help for her injuries, however, her calls were never returned.

Unfortunately, Kavanaugh’s case isn’t the only incident that has occurred at this Stripes location. Carlson Law Firm attorney Kathryn Knotts is representing other clients with similar slip and falls.

“If you slip and fall, don’t assume you were just clumsy and fell,” Knotts said. “I find way too often that people don’t report their slip and fall properly. Without these reports, it makes it harder to prove the case.”

Knotts offers these tips if you ever slip and fall at business: 

  • Report your slip and fall to management immediately and request an incident report—even if you aren’t badly injured, soreness and pain may surface later that day or the next.
  • Identify what caused your fall and if possible, take photos of the spill, defect or condition before the business begins to correct the problem.
  • If other customers witnessed your slip and fall, ask for their contact information.
  • Keep the shoes you were wearing at the time of your fall.
  • If you’re hurt, don’t continue to shop. If you must get the item you were there for—ask an employee to get it for you so you can go home or to the doctor.
  • Seek medical care.
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