Slip And Fall Accidents: When Can You Sue?

SlippedMany of us trip, slip and stumble on a daily basis. The thing is, many of us also walk away from these clumsy moments mostly unscathed, save for a bruise or scratch. People who suffer severe slip and fall accidents, whether it be at someone’s private property, public property or a commercial business, are not so lucky. When someone slips, falls and subsequently injures themselves, you can’t automatically sue the property owner. It must be proven that the property owner failed to maintain his or her property, and the hazardous conditions caused or primarily contributed to the slip and fall accident. 

How do I win a slip and fall personal injury case?

Texas is a no-fault state. Therefore, it must be established the slip and fall victim was less than 50% responsible for the accident. Take this hypothetical situation for instance. You were attending a function in downtown Dallas. Alcohol was being served, and over the course of the evening, you had too much to drink. As a result, you fell and hurt your back. In this case, the property owner may not be held liable for the incident because the victim was intoxicated.

However, if you were walking upstairs to your apartment and the steps gave way and caused you to fall, you may have a case. In order for the property owner to be held liable, he or she must have known there was a dangerous condition and failed to fix it. Even if the property owner was not aware of the hazard, but had failed to monitor the property, he or she could still be at fault.

If the property owner is found guilty, the victim may recover compensation for his or her injuries, loss of wages and more. That is why it is imperative a thorough investigation of the accident is conducted in a timely manner. Evidence must be obtained quickly. You can do this by taking pictures as soon as possible and speaking to any witnesses. You do not want to allow enough time for the property owner to repair the problem.

What are some common causes of slip and fall accidents?

Slip and fall accidents can occur on public or private property. Someone could get hurt at a restaurant, someone’s home, the grocery store, a shopping mall or city sidewalk. Faulty construction, outside steps worn over time, and the lack of a sign warning of a wet floor are just a few examples of how slip and fall accidents occur.

Do business owners and private property owners have the same legal obligations?

It is the duty of a business owner and the owner of private property to uphold and maintain certain standards. If they do not, they could be held liable. And it is not just the property owner who is at risk. Tenants of an apartment complex or a businessperson who rents an office, for example, are considered “occupiers.” They, too, can be held liable for third party accidents.

Another aspect you must consider is whether or not the visitor was on the property legally. If you are trespassing on someone’s private property and get hurt, you may not receive compensation for your injuries.

So how do you prove who is at fault in a slip and fall accident?

One of the best recourses is to hire an experienced, proactive personal injury lawyer, one who will thoroughly investigate the accident, closely evaluate the evidence and create an aggressive plan to show the property owner was negligent.

North Dallas personal injury attorney Amy VanDeLoo has successfully represented slip and fall victims.  She extends her personal injury legal services to those in Allen, Frisco, McKinney and Plano. To set up a free initial consultation, call the VanDeLoo Firm at 972-200-5080. Whether you have suffered a sprained ankle, broken ribs or back injury, Amy VanDeLoo may be your best bet at getting the compensation you need to recover from your injuries.