Premises liability


Slip and Fall Accident Attorneys Serving Fort Lauderdale

 

Fort Lauderdale Slip & Fall Attorney

 

 

No matter how graceful we like to think that we are, we’ve all tripped before, and most of us have fallen flat on our faces at one time or another. If it was a minor fall, you might have just picked yourself up and laughed the incident off, but if the fall was more serious, it can be difficult to move on.

 

Tripping and falling can result in serious and long-lasting injuries, especially for older adults who may break bones more easily and heal more slowly than younger people. Falls result in approximately 8.9 million emergency room visits each year, and in 2010 approximately 21,700 older adults died due to injuries sustained in a fall.

 

If you or a loved one suffers injuries after a fall, the first thing you should do is seek proper medical attention. You should also try to determine the cause of the fall so that you can keep other people from having a similar accident. If the accident was caused by the negligence of another person, they should be held responsible both for the cost of your treatment and rehabilitation and for the pain and suffering that you’ve been forced to endure.

 

Common Causes of Florida Trip and Fall Accidents

 

Sometimes trip and fall accidents occur in your own home or due to a misstep on an otherwise stable surface. However, in other cases the accident is caused by the negligence of a property or building owner. There are many different things that can lead to a trip and fall or slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, including:

 

  • Poor lighting
  • Slippery floors
  • Liquids spilled on the floor
  • Uneven sidewalk, pathway, steps, or curb
  • Unseen danger, such as a hole covered by overgrown weeds
  • Electrical cords or other obstacles lying on a walkway
  • Loose rugs or mats
  • Open filing cabinet or desk drawers
  • Clutter on the floor

Trip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, but common locations include in the home, at work, in restaurants or hotels, or in commercial shopping areas. Accidents also occur in rented homes, and in some of these cases, the landlord may be found liable for any resulting injuries because they are responsible for ensuring the safety and security of the property.

 

Of course, the property owner isn’t responsible for falls in all cases, but they are liable if they have failed to keep their property in a reasonably safe condition and this lack of care leads to an accident.

 

Consequences of a Trip and Fall Accident

 

While minor falls might just lead to some bruising, a bad trip and fall accident can cause serious injuries that impact quality of life and can even increase the risk of an early death. Falls are also the most common cause of brain injuries that can lead to memory problems, personality changes, and difficulty in basic functioning. In addition to a traumatic brain injury, bad falls can also lead to:

 

  • Lacerations
  • Torn ligaments
  • Fractured bones (including hip, spine, arms, legs, ankles, and hands)
  • Head trauma
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Long-term fear of falling
  • Long-term pain

Many of the injuries associated with a bad fall can lead to expensive medical bills, and plenty of people find themselves struggling both to recuperate from the accident and stay above water financially. Some injuries force people to take time off of work or to leave their job permanently, which means that on top of having medical bills to pay, they don’t have a regular source of income.

 

If your injuries were caused by the negligence of a third party, it’s essential that you work with an experienced trip and fall lawyer in order to recover the compensation you need.

 

Proving Fault in a Florida Trip and Fall Case

 

In the state of Florida, it’s up to you to prove that your accident was caused by the negligence of a business or property owner. There are three basic things that you need to show the court:

 

  1. The property owner had a duty of care to you. For example, if you’re walking through a store during business hours or touring a house with a real estate agent, there’s an expectation that the property owners will make sure those areas are safe for visitors.
  2. The owner failed to take reasonable care in maintaining their property. For example, if an escalator was three years past its required inspection date or a business owner failed to fill in a hole in the parking lot even after multiple complaints from people who tripped over it, that owner was being negligent in their duty.
  3. The owner’s failure to maintain the safety of their property led to your injury. If you tripped and fell as a result of the owner’s negligence, you are entitled to compensation for your injuries.

Proving fault can get complicated in trip and fall cases because the court needs to see that the property owner failed to act in a “reasonable” manner. For example, if a grocery store employee spilled a gallon of milk and someone else almost immediately slipped on the resulting puddle, the grocery store owner wouldn’t necessarily be liable. However, if an employee spilled that gallon of milk in the evening and the puddle was still there when the store opened the next morning, the owner is more likely to be held liable in a slip and fall case.

 

A good trip and fall lawyer can help you determine if a property owner was aware of a hazardous area, whether any reasonable efforts were taken to make the area safer, and whether a reasonable person would have made a greater effort to keep the property safe.

 

If a Florida court finds that another person or organization is responsible for your injury, they will then determine the amount of compensation to award you. Factors that are considered include:

 

  • Medical expenses
  • Loss of wages
  • Permanent disability
  • Decreased enjoyment of life

If you or a loved one has been injured in a trip and fall accident that was caused by the negligence of another, you should be compensated for your suffering and financial loss. Contact the law firm of Lawlor White & Murphey via email at info@lwmlegal.com,  call us Toll-Free at 855-347-5475,in South Florida at 954-525-2345. Consultations are free, and we work on a contingency basis, meaning we are not paid until you receive compensation.


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