Mike Hostilo Law Firm

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The information on this website was written by Michael G. Hostilo, LLC as advertising material and is intended for general information purposes only. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Client testimonials are actual and not paid for. The firm is licensed to practice law in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina

Slip and Fall Liability

If you or a loved one have suffered in a slip and fall, The Mike Hostilo Law Firm is here to help.

(Jake Hills | Unsplash)

About 800,000 patients a year are hospitalized due to a head injury or hip fracture caused by a fall, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Many slip and fall injuries are severe, resulting in lost wages and medical bills.

Slip and fall is a term used for a personal injury case in which a person slipped or fell on someone else’s property due to the negligence of the property owner. These personal injury lawsuits fall under a broader category of cases known as premises liability. Many slip and falls take place because of the negligence of the property owner. If a property owner failed to keep the property safe, he or she could be held liable in a slip and fall lawsuit.

Public and private property owners are required to keep their property well-maintained, secure, and safe. If you were in a slip or fall accident, the condition of the property at the time of the accident would most likely determine if the owner can be held liable for damages. See below to find out the types and causes of many slip and fall accidents.

Types of Slip and Fall Accidents

  • Trip and fall-there is something blocking the walking path. This includes any object in the walkway that could cause a person to slip or trip.
  • Slip and fall-the floor or ground is wet or greasy, and there aren't any warning signs informing you that the ground is wet.
  • Step and fall-an unexpected hole in the ground can cause a step and fall-accident. A missing maintenance hole or utility cover can create this type of accident.
  • Stump and fall-this can happen when a cord or wire is in your walkway.

Slip, Trip and Fall Causes

Most slip and fall accidents happen because of unsafe conditions. Usually, there is something wrong with the floor or stairs the person is walking on. Below are examples of a few slip and fall causes.

  • Unmarked danger zone-if there is damage to the floor or stairs, and the property owner is aware of the danger but does not mark the area he or she can be held liable for the damages.
  • Dangerous stairs-property owners are required to make sure stairs are safe for people to walk. During an investigation, if the stairs are found to be uneven, broken, or slippery, the property owner could be held responsible for the injury.
  • Inadequate lighting-dim lighting in a parking lot, on stairwells, and other areas outside can contribute to slips and falls.
  • Walkways with debris-walkways should be kept free of debris at all times.
  • Walkways with snow or ice-property owners are required to pay attention to weather conditions that affect their property. If there is snow on the ground, they must remove it from walkways and salt the ground where there is ice.
  • Damaged walkways-property owners should be aware of and repair any damaged driveways or paths leading up to the business.

Common Slip and Fall Injuries

  • Fractured hips
  • Broken bones
  • Head injuries
  • Sprained ankles and wrists
  • Cuts and bruises
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Muscle strains
  • Shoulder dislocations

You need to protect yourself both physically and legally after you've been injured in a slip and fall event. The insurance company you are making the claim against will have attorneys representing and fighting for them. Our firm has the resources, experience, and commitment to take on the largest insurance companies. You focus on getting back to normal; we focus on results. We can help with:

  • Catastrophic and debilitating injuries
  • Aggressive insurance adjusters
  • Lost wages
  • Outstanding high medical fees
  • Complex insurance claim policies and procedures

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Proving Fault in a Slip and Fall Injury Case

If you slipped or fell and were injured on someone else’s property, you may have a personal injury lawsuit against the property owner. Property owner’s are required by law to take care of their property and make sure there aren’t any present dangers. Below are a few things the property owner is required to do to keep the property safe.

  • Mop up wet floors
  • Salt icy areas
  • Maintain pavements on property
  • Use non-skid materials
  • Pay attention to hazardous weather conditions
  • Remove snow
  • Remove obstacles from the walkway

If the property owner knew about a present danger and neglected to take care of the hazardous condition that resulted in an injury, he or she could be found liable. Below are a few examples of negligent conditions that could cause a slip and fall injury.

  • Uneven stairs
  • Failure to salt icy walkways
  • Debris in walkway
  • Slippery floors without a caution sign
  • Loose or torn carpet
  • Broken floor tiles

A slip or fall can cause painful injuries that require time and money to heal. The key to beginning the recovery process is determining who the responsible party is so the legal process can begin.

Commercial Slip and Fall

To be held legally responsible for a slip and fall injury that took place on a commercial property, the owner of the property must have caused the damage, known about the unstable surface, or should have known about the slippery surface that caused the injury.

Residential Property

Residential properties are zoned for living or dwelling. In a rental property, it's the landlord's responsibility to keep tenants safe. Below are examples of possible slip and fall instances. In a slip and fall lawsuit, you will need to prove that the property owner didn't take reasonably necessary actions to fix any issues that could cause a slip or fall accident.

  • The landlord is responsible for the property and keeping it safe.
  • The Landlord failed to take action to fix the property posing a threat to the tenant's safety.
  • The injury took place as a consequence of not fixing the damage.

Slips and Falls at Work

    Another common place where people fall and get injured is at work. It’s the employer’s responsibility to make sure all employees have a safe work environment. Below are the three types of workplace slip and falls.

  • Fall on a single level-many things can cause these types of falls, such as uneven footways, curved surfaces, surface blocked by fixtures, tools, or other workplace equipment.
  • Swing falls-this can also be referred to as a fall to a lower level. This type of fall takes place when workers perform tasks at height. They could be servicing an aircraft, installing theater lighting, or working in a construction or industrial environment. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires employers to have fall protection in place for working heights of four feet or higher for general industry and six feet or higher for construction. If an application puts workers at a higher risk of falling, a fall arrest system must be installed.

If you have suffered injuries due to a slip and fall accident, you may have the right to compensation for your injuries and losses.

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