Slip and Fall Attorney – Premises Liability Lawsuit
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Slip and fall accidents don’t just happen by chance; they happen as a result of negligence and ignoring the safety standards that are required by law. Even though there are plenty of safety standards, codes, laws, and guidelines for both taking care of construction areas and current properties, people too often need the help of slip and fall accident lawyers to gain compensation through a premises liability lawsuit. It’s been estimated that as many as 25,000 slip, trip, and fall accidents happen daily in the US.
Slip and fall accidents are considered premise liability cases, which require the expertise of a skilled slip and fall attorney.
When a property owner does not properly care for and maintain his or her property, the situation can result in a tragic slip and fall accident. These situations can seem hopeless as you fight to prove liability of the property owner or manager. With The Carlson Law Firm on your side, there is no reason to be afraid of the matter at hand. A slip and fall attorney can help you recover not only physically but also financially.
What are Common Slip and Fall Injuries?
More than 2.5 million older adults visited emergency rooms in the U.S. in 2013 after being injured in non-fatal falls, and more than 734,000 patients were admitted to a hospital, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Falls can cause severe injuries including:
- Fractures: NFSI reports that falls cause 87 percent of bone fractures in adults ages 65 and up. Hip fractures are a common result of slip and falls among the elderly, but anyone of any age can break a bone in a fall.
- Death: The CDC reports that falls are the top cause of death for adults ages 65 and up. Children are especially vulnerable to death as a result of a slip and fall, although anyone can suffer fatal injuries in slip and fall accidents.
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): Hitting your head in a fall can cause you to develop this condition, which causes ongoing cognitive impairment, mood changes, seizures, and other symptoms. The consequences of a brain injury from a fall can be very severe. An estimated 46 percent of fall-related deaths in 2000 occurred due to TBI, according to the CDC.
- Spinal cord injury: NFSI reports that falls are the second most common cause of spinal cord damage in adults over the age of 65. Anyone who falls on their back could potentially damage the spinal cord and experience full or partial paralysis.
- Neck, shoulder, and back injuries: These injuries can include damage to the soft tissues including the muscles, joints, and ligaments. Strains, sprains, and herniated discs can result from fall injuries.
- Knee injuries: Injuries to the knee from a fall may include damage to soft tissues including sprains, strains, and tears.
Can a slip and fall cause a bulging disc?
Yes, a bulging disc is a common slip and fall injury. While the discs between your vertebrae absorb daily impacts on the spine, they are impervious to damage. Discs may suffer wear and tear for a variety of reasons and bulging discs often occur on their own. However, sudden impacts such as a slip and fall can also cause a bulging disc spinal injury.
Can a slip and fall cause a herniated disc?
A slip and fall on liquids, hazardous or dangerous premises can lead to herniated discs. In fact, herniated discs are a common slip and fall injury. Much like a bulging disc, a herniated disc involves your vertebrae. Spinal disc injuries lead to severe pain because of nerve compression.
What are Common Slip and Fall Causes?
Cases of slip and fall accidents also include tripping and falling due to a hazardous circumstance that could have been avoided with proper maintenance. To win premises liability cases of this sort, liability will have to be proven effective.
Many common causes include:
- Wet floors
- Slippery or slick floors
- Ice or snow
- Cracks in sidewalks or flooring
- Uneven walkways
- Unmarked spills
- Poor lighting
- Stairs that are too deep, have a broken handrail or narrow treads
- Defective equipment
If there is a spill or other dangerous situation on a premise, a sign or other warning must alert those in the area. When this is not the case, substantial compensation for the injury could be yours. A slip and fall attorney can be your legal guidance through the situation.
Where Do Slip and Fall Accidents Happen?
Slip and falls can happen almost anywhere. However, there are certain situations and locations where there is a higher chance of a fall. For example:
- Hotels: NSU Hospitality reports that slip and falls are the top cause of hotel injuries each year, with 70 percent occurring on flat walking surfaces.
- Restaurants: According to the National Floor Safety Institute and as reported by EHS Today, slip and fall accidents are the number one cause of injuries in the hospitality industry. slip and fall incidents every year.
- Grocery Stores: The National Floor Safety Institute reports that more than $450 million is spent annually to defend against slip and fall claims, and these accidents are the leading cause of injuries for both employees and patrons.
- Work: The National Floor Safety Institute reports that around 16 percent of all workers’ compensation claims and 26 percent of costs associated with work injuries occur as a result of falls at work.
- Stairs: Property owners are liable for staircase accidents in pretty much the same way as they would be responsible if visitors to their property were injured in a slip and fall incident
What To Do After a Slip and Fall Injury
Statistics show that there is a high likelihood that, at some point in your life, you will fall and injure yourself. While many falls occur due to no negligence on the part of others, a significant number of injuries attributed to slip and falls because of owner negligence. Often, property owners fail to keep their premises safe from unreasonably dangerous conditions and know hazards. In the event you suffer an injury in a way that you feel may be the fault of another, it is essential you take the appropriate steps from the moment the accident occurs to protect your rights and preserve crucial evidence to prove your premises liability lawsuit.
If you are involved in a slip/trip & fall accident, you should:
- Avoid making any detailed statements concerning fault
- Get names of owners and managers of property
- Write names of witnesses
- Take good pictures of scene and injuries
- Save footwear and clothing
- Seek medical attention if injured
- Do not give recorded statements to insurance adjusters
- Contact a slip and fall attorney immediately to discuss a premises liability lawsuit
Commercial Property Slip and Fall – Premises Liability Lawsuit
Any place where the general public is invited to come and shop or conduct business must conduct reasonable inspections to keep the premises safe for their patrons. Spills and leaks in machines often cause hard to notice slip hazards in public places. Faulty railing, rotten balconies, and steps, poor lighting, holes and elevation changes in walkways all may lead to a serious injury from an unanticipated fall. These businesses expect these falls to happen and they often have ‘risk management teams’ who know how to take action to hide the evidence of their liability.
Private Property Slip and Fall – Premises Liability Lawsuit
Homeowners and landowners are also responsible for eliminating and/or disclosing known hazards. Further, they are responsible for hazards of which they should know upon reasonable inspection. They must tell their guests of potential risks. Failure to do so can result in civil liability for personal injury damages.
A dangerous condition on property that is likely to draw children or others onto the property because of its allure or appeal is an example of this known as an “attractive nuisance.” Properties with swimming ponds, trails, or tracks that might be reasonably anticipated to draw people onto the property may fall under the attractive nuisance doctrine if they conceal a hidden danger.
Slip and Fall At Work – Premises Liability Lawsuit
It is important to differentiate between workplace slip and falls and those that occur during leisure on someone else’s property. Worker’s compensation may cover your slip and fall, whereas other slip and falls are not.
If you experience a slip and fall at work, it is important to report the incident to your supervisor immediately. You may have to fill out paperwork and give a detailed account of your accident. Some workplaces require supervisors to fill out this information. In addition, your employer should offer you the opportunity to seek medical care.
If you decide to file a claim against your employer after consulting with a slip and fall law firm, you will need to prove that your employer was liable for your accident. A slip and fall attorney can help.
How Can I Take Legal Action After a Slip and Fall?
The law allows creates a path to make you whole after certain losses. You can seek compensation for all of the costs and consequences of fall accidents. For example, you may seek payment for medical bills, lost income/wages, pain and suffering damages, and emotional distress damages. If the fall leads to a death, the surviving family members can also recover compensation for loss of companionship and other wrongful death damages.
Under Texas law, the duty owed to a person who enters another person’s property is determined by the injured party’s status. One who owns or is in control of property may owe a different duty depending upon the injured person’s status.
The three status classifications are:
- Invitee – An invitee is defined as someone who enters the property of another for the property possessors benefit. For example, a customer in a store is an invitee.
- Licensee – A licensee is a person who enters the property of another for the mutual benefit of the landowner/possessor and the individual visiting.
- Trespasser – A trespasser is a person who enters the property of another without any invitation or right. A person who enters a property as an invitee can become a trespasser. For example, leaving the area where you are an invitee to enter a zoned off locations makes you a trespasser. An example is a store customer sneaking into an employee-only area.
Each of the above classifications determines the duty owed to the injured person. The duties owed are as follows:
- Duty to an Invitee. A person in control of the premises owes a duty to exercise reasonable care to provide safe premises. This means that the landowner must disclose all unreasonably dangerous conditions of which he or she is aware. Further, this includes those conditions that he should have knowledge of upon reasonable inspection of the property. Failure to do one or the other results in liability for injury caused by the unreasonably dangerous condition.
- Duty to a Licensee. A person in control of the premises owes a licensee a duty to disclose only known dangerous conditions. There is no duty to inspect the property to make it reasonably safe for a licensee.
- Duty to a Trespasser. A person in control of the premises owes a trespasser only a minimal duty: do not cause intentional or willful harm. Proving liability for an adult trespasser is extremely difficult in many cases. However, there are some exceptions, such as the attractive nuisance doctrine and the doctrine of implied permission by acquiescence.
How A Slip and Fall Attorney from The Carlson Law Firm Can Help With Your Premises Liability Lawsuit
At The Carlson Law Firm, we can use our over 35 years worth of experience to help determine liability. We have investigators on our team who work hard to find irrefutable evidence in premises liability cases. You deserve compensation for the substantial amount of medical bills or other hardships as a result of your injuries. A slip and fall attorney from our firm can help you receive that which you deserve. It is important to work with a slip and fall attorney who understands your situation. Our firm can help you through the process of rebuilding your life.
At The Carlson Law Firm, we have a commitment to helping you get back on your feet and building a healthy future. Contact our firm today! We have offices in Killeen, Temple, Waco, Austin, San Antonio, Laredo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock, and Bryan. We are available 24/7 and always ready to help you!