- What is a slip and fall injury?
- What Should You Do if a Loved One is Injured as a Result of a Fall?
- Should I Contact a Lawyer if a Loved One is Injured in a Slip and Fall?
A "slip and fall" or "trip and fall" is the name the legal profession has given to an accident that occurs when someone slips, trips, or falls as s result of a dangerous condition. Causative factors vary, but may include water, ice, snow, abrupt changes in the elevation of a floor, sidewalk, or other surface, poor lighting, or just a hole in the ground. Every year, millions of people are injured in slip and fall accidents. The National Center for Injury Prevention and Control estimates that 8 1/2 million people were injured in falls during 2008. Falls are particularly dangerous for the elderly. Nearly 1.8 million elderly people were injured in falls during 2008 and almost 500,000 of them were hospitalized. Back to top.
Obtaining prompt medical attention is of paramount importance. If the injury a loved one has suffered is serious, it may be appropriate to call 911 and have him or her taken to the hospital immediately. This is particularly true of the elderly, but is also true for a person of any age. Even if an ambulance is not necessary, it still may be wise to take your loved one to the emergency room that same day or at least have him or her see your family doctor or, if an elderly relative in a nursing home, the nursing home physician, as soon as possible.
A critical aspect of any case where an injury has occurred is the investigation of the circumstances surrounding the injury and the preservation of evidence. This is particularly important in a slip and fall setting where the causative factor may be corrected before you have an opportunity to photograph it. The investigation typically involves an examination of the scene of the injury while the evidence, such as the location or condition of the premises, is still fresh. It is sometimes necessary to notify the owner of the premises where the fall occurred of its obligation to preserve evidence or even obtain a court order to ensure that relevant evidence is preserved.
Finally, identifying witnesses, securing their cooperation, and obtaining their statements as to what they saw or heard, as well as background information about the location where the fall occurred, should also be done as soon as possible.
Because of the importance of a quick assessment of the surrounding facts, an investigation of the circumstances of the injury, and preservation of relevant evidence, you should consider retaining a qualified attorney experienced in working with personal injuries of all sorts and knowledgeable about investigations of slip and fall injuries. Through its experience in working with experts in numerous medical specialties as well as accident reconstruction, defective equipment, and a host of other areas, Brown & Szaller can bring tremendous expertise to bear and obtain for you the recompense that you deserve.
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It is important to seek legal assistance from a lawyer with experience in the type of injury your loved one has sustained as soon as possible after the accident. Your lawyer will need time to obtain witness statements and gather a variety of information that is necessary to prosecute your case. The earlier you contact a lawyer, the greater your chance of obtaining a strong recovery either through settlement or if you have to file a lawsuit for compensation. With adequate time, an experienced lawyer can strengthen the case, emphasizing favorable facts while fortifying weaknesses in the case.
An experienced lawyer will know the general contours of information required to strengthen your claim for compensation. Thus, you increase the likelihood that you will prevail in your case and you increase the amount of compensation you are likely to recover by retaining a lawyer with experience in auto accident cases. An experienced lawyer, such as those at the Brown & Szaller law firm, will meet with you, listen to what you have to say, explain your legal options, gather the critical facts, obtain and review medical reports and witness statements, and help you decide upon the best course of action. Brown and Szaller lawyers will guide you through a complicated process involving insurance issues, pay back (subrogation), the amount of coverage and whether your own coverage applies. Do not trust the at fault parties insurance carrier. Brown and Szaller has handled numerous car accident cases to successful conclusion.
The lawyers at Brown & Szaller will meet with you for a free initial consultation. Even if you are unsure whether you have a claim for compensation we will discuss the facts of the case and your options and together determine the viability of your case with no up-front charge. Back to top.