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Slip and Fall Accidents: Do You Have a Case?

Slip and fall accidents occur when a person sustains an injury or a fatality due to foreseeable and hazardous environmental conditions. Slip and fall accidents can cause disabling and severe injuries, especially for disabled or elderly persons. These accidents are often preventable through inspections and maintenance by property owners, business owners, and managers. The responsible parties owe a duty of care to visitors and guests by ensuring reasonably safe premises.  Victims of slip and fall accidents may be entitled to monetary compensation for damages incurred during the fall. In Florida, the Department of Health reports that falls are the leading cause of injuries, fatalities, and injury-related hospital admissions. 

http://ww11.doh.state.fl.us/comm/_partners/infographics_injury_prevention/office_printing/falls_in_florida_8.5×11.pdf

Slip and Fall Accidents Can Be Serious and Costly

The National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI) is a non-profit organization that provides education, research, and develops safety standards to prevent falls. They report that falls account for over 8 million hospital emergency room visits annually. Over 1 million visits are for slip and fall accidents.  These accidents are the leading cause of occupational injuries for people 55 years and older.

 https://nfsi.org/nfsi-research/quick-facts/

The Center for Disease Control reports that approximately 36 million older adults fall each year in the United States, resulting in more than 32,000 deaths. More than 85% of hip fractures are caused by falls.

 https://www.cdc.gov/injury/features/older-adult-falls/index.html

Common Causes:

  • Uneven flooring
  • No handrails or shaky handrails
  • Clutter, cords, or wires on the floor
  • Ongoing construction
  • Failure to post warning signs
  • Wet or waxed floors
  • Cracked, obstructed, or broken sidewalks
  • Broken or missing steps
  • Poor lighting
  • Hazardous weather
  • Inappropriate footwear

Types of Injuries Sustained in Slip and Fall Accidents

Injuries caused by slip and fall accidents include trauma to the head, neck, back, extremities, and spine. Consequences may be paralysis, traumatic brain injury, fractures, lacerations and contusions, sprains and strains, torn ligaments and tendons, and fatalities. Health issues including permanent disabilities may plague a victim for their lifetime. In addition, there are financial burdens such as medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering.

Important Questions to Consider in a Slip and Fall Accident:

  • Was the defendant aware of the hazardous condition?
  • For businesses or public venues, does the defendant have any policies to assess and correct dangerous conditions?
  • Were there warning signs posted?
  • Does the plaintiff have comparative negligence?
  • Where did the injury occur?
  • Was the victim a guest or a trespasser?
  • Is the claim within the statute of limitations? (Florida Statute 95.11(3)(a))
  • Were there witnesses to the accident?
  • Was medical care rendered at the time of the accident?
  • Does the defendant carry liability insurance?

What Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident

A victim must report the accident immediately to the owner or manager of a property, business, or public venue. If possible, take photos or videos at the accident scene, as evidence can disappear quickly. Gather information from witnesses and seek immediate medical attention. Clear and concise medical records are crucial in a Florida personal injury claim.

Insurance carriers and property owners may attempt to shift the blame to the victim. Avoid detailed conversations with owners, managers, and insurance agents until you have consulted a personal injury attorney for your slip and fall case. A victim’s statements may be misconstrued, misrepresenting them as the at-fault party in the claim. Even if the victim shares in the negligence that caused the accident, they are entitled to a reduced compensation.

Call Us for a No-Obligation Consultation

Orlando Accident Attorney has recovered multi-million-dollar settlements and awards for personal injury claims nationwide on behalf of countless clients. As seasoned complex litigation attorneys, we understand the legal process and present solid evidence for each element in a negligence claim. We can persuasively present the value of your damages in negotiations with the defendant, insurance carriers, or a court of law. 

Call Orlando Accident Attorney at our Winter Park, Florida office at (407) 706-3909 to schedule a consultation with a caring personal injury attorney with a solid record of success. We represent clients for slip and fall injuries and fatalities throughout Florida.