Almost everyone has slipped and fallen at some point. In fact, falls are the main reason people visit hospitals’ emergency rooms. Many of these accidents happen at home and they are no-one’s fault. However, if your accident happened on someone else’s property and you were injured, you should contact Sacramento slip and fall lawyers. If the property owner was in some way at fault for your injuries, they should have to compensate you for your losses.
Situations That Can Cause Slip and Fall Accidents
People slip and fall because of a wide variety of things including:
- Wet floors
- Newly polished floors
- Loose carpets
- Uneven sidewalks and surfaces
- Power cords
- Shifting gravel
- Bunched rugs
- Sudden changes in elevation
Common Injuries Sustained from Slip and Fall Accidents
Not all slip and fall accidents result in injuries but when they do, they can range from minor to severe. Since these accidents happen suddenly, there’s little the victim can do. In serious cases, their lives can change significantly in that instant. Some of the injuries that slip and fall accidents typically cause include:
- Cuts and bruises. These are the most common injuries that people suffer when they slip and fall, and they tend to be the least serious. Minor scrapes can be easily treated but depending on where you fall, you may sustain deep cuts that require stitches.
- Broken bones. It’s easy to break your bones if you slip and fall. Some people suffer only minor fractures, but others sustain serious injuries that require surgery. Some people end up with chronic pain that requires long-term therapy.
- Soft tissue injuries. After a fall, you may think you’re okay because you don’t see any signs of injury or feel pain. However, some sprains and tears don’t present symptoms until later. It’s important that you seek medical attention after you fall so a doctor can examine you.
- Spinal cord injuries. These are among the more serious injuries you can suffer, and they require immediate medical attention. Severe spinal cord injuries can lead to paralysis and victims often require costly treatment. If you suffer a spinal cord injury, you need Sacramento slip and fall lawyers on your case who will fight for your right to claim compensation.
- Head and brain injuries. People who slip and fall often hit their heads. If you suffer a minor concussion, you may not notice symptoms right away. However, some people experience headaches, dizziness, and problems with thinking clearly. In the most serious cases, people who fall can suffer traumatic brain injuries that have long-term or permanent implications.
How Sacramento Slip and Fall Lawyers Determine Liability
Under California’s laws, property owners have a duty to keep their properties in a reasonably safe condition. If there’s a hazard like a wet floor or a broken staircase, they should warn people that it exists. Owners who don’t take these steps can be held liable if someone slips and falls and gets injured.
Typically, there are three factors that must be proven in order for a slip and fall claim or lawsuit to be successful. These are that:
- The property owner had a duty towards the victim
- The property owner failed to live up to that duty
- You were injured as a result of that failure
It can be difficult to hold a property owner liable for a slip and fall accident. Owners must take reasonable steps to ensure their properties are safe but wherever possible, they will deny responsibility.
Some of the factors your attorney will consider include whether:
- The property owner caused the dangerous situation
- The property owner knew of the danger but failed to correct it
- A reasonable person could have noticed and addressed the danger
- The danger existed for a legitimate reason
- A barrier or warning would have made the area safer
- Poor lighting contributed to the slip and fall accident
Not every accident that happens on someone else’s property warrants an insurance claim or a lawsuit, no matter how upset you may be. Your lawyer will, therefore, investigate the situation to ensure the property owner bears some amount of responsibility. Sometimes, victims are responsible for their injuries since they ignored warning signs or were distracted at the time of the accident. In California, victims can claim compensation even if they’re partly at fault. However, their damages will be reduced by their percentage of fault.
When you contact the Sacramento slip and fall lawyers at TorkLaw, we will review your case and give you our expert opinion on whether you can hold the property owner liable.
Compensation You Can Claim in a Slip and Fall Case
If you suffer injuries after slipping and falling, you may be entitled to claim compensation for:
- Medical expenses. You may need to go to the hospital, undergo tests and scans, purchase medication, and undergo physical therapy.
- Lost wages and lost earning capacity. If you can’t work because of your injuries, you can claim compensation for the wages you lost. If you’re unable to work again or you have to switch careers, you may also be entitled to damages.
- Pain and suffering. Serious injuries can result in both physical pain and psychological trauma.
Evidence That Can Be Helpful in Slip and Fall Accidents
You will need to prove that the property owner was at fault for your accident. While your attorney will play a major role in your case, there are a number of things you can do to help yourself. These include:
- Writing down the events that let up to your fall and what happened after
- Describing the environmental conditions at the time of your fall
- Taking photos of the scene before the hazard is fixed or cleaned up
- Getting contact information for eyewitnesses
- Reporting the accident to the property owner or their representative
- Seeking medical attention for your injuries
- Keeping all your medical records
The better you document the incident, the easier it will be for your lawyer to build a strong case.
Reach Out to TorkLaw Today for Help with Your Case
You’re more likely to get full and fair compensation for your injuries if you hire an attorney. Victims who don’t have lawyers often get their claims denied or insurance companies convince them to accept really low settlements. Getting adequate compensation can be complex so you need to ensure you have competent Sacramento slip and fall lawyers on your side. At TorkLaw, we’re skilled in negotiating with insurance companies but if necessary, we’ll take your case all the way to trial. Contact us today to set up a free consultation.