Slip and Fall Lawsuit

woman falling down concrete steps

In the US, slip and fall accidents result in over 1 million visits to the emergency room annually. Injuries caused by these accidents can be severe, and they account for 85% of all fractures sustained by individuals over age 65. While many slip and fall accidents occur within our own homes, there are plenty of instances when they happen on someone else’s property as a result of negligence. In these cases, you have the right to pursue legal action in the form of a slip and fall lawsuit against the person(s) responsible. 

What is Premises Liability?

Slip and fall cases typically fall under the legal umbrella category of “premises liability.” This is a branch of personal injury law that focuses specifically on negligent property holders. Premises liability is not restricted to slip and fall cases. In fact, there are a wide variety of lawsuits that fall under premises liability, including:

  • Dog bites
  • Accidental drownings
  • Elevator accidents
  • Falling debris
  • Fires
  • Improper security (leading to theft and/or assault)

So long as you were on the premises lawfully, you have the right to a certain amount of protection. Property owners have a responsibility to perform routine maintenance that reduces the chance of accidents. They also have a duty to inform anyone coming on the property of unsafe conditions. If they fail to do these things, they can be held liable. 

What Causes Slip and Fall Accidents?

Slip and fall accidents may be caused by any number of unsafe or unpredictable conditions. However, some of the most common accidents involving negligence by the property owner include:

  • Wet floors without proper warning signs
  • Ice and snow 
  • Loose flooring or carpet
  • Exposed nails or other hardware
  • Unsecured cords
  • Cracks in pavement and sidewalks
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Debris on the floor
  • Lack of hand or guardrails
  • Lose, worn, or warped steps

What To Do After a Slip and Fall Accident

1. Get Medical Attention

As with any personal injury, your first priority should be your safety following a slip and fall accident. Fractures and sprains are not uncommon with these types of accidents, so you will likely need immediate medical care. 

While you are being treated for your injuries, be sure to follow your physician’s instructions as closely as possible. Unfortunately, any deviation from the prescribed treatment plan can be used by opposing counsel to suggest your injuries are not as serious as you say they are. 

2. Start a Case File

If you are able to, consider documenting a few things in the area where you fell while you are waiting for medical care to arrive. This will be especially helpful if the injury was caused by something that could easily be cleaned up by the property owner, such as a wet floor or debris. Snap a few pictures of the conditions you believe contributed to your fall, and be sure to take pictures of your injuries as well.

If you fell at a place of business, report the accident to management and request they make a formal report. If the police were called, be sure to obtain a copy of their report as well. Keep all additional documents related to your case, including medical bills, insurance correspondence, workplace communications related to your absence, and other pertinent information. 

3. Hire an Attorney

The most important thing you will need to do after a slip and fall accident is consult with an attorney. Proving premises liability can be complicated, and you will need someone to help build your case for you while you recover. Your attorney will collect additional evidence in the form of video footage, witness testimony, prior incidents, and more to help prove your injury was the result of negligence. 

Make sure to provide your attorney with any useful information or physical evidence. In some cases, it can even be helpful to supply the clothing you wore at the time of your accident. Rips, blood, oil stains, and other evidence can be an indication as to the severity of your fall. 

Avoid signing anything or making any verbal statements until you have consulted with your attorney. This includes documents from the property owner and his or her insurance company. 

Denver Slip and Fall Attorney 

If you or a loved one has had a slip and fall accident in Colorado, contact Dave Roth with the Roth Group. Slip and fall injuries can be severe, resulting in high medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Dave can help build your case so you can receive fair compensation while you recover. Contact our office or go online today to schedule your free consultation.