Whether working on a jobsite or shopping in a supermarket, most people never see a slip and fall coming. Preventing slip and fall accidents is crucial to public safety and upholding culpability is the best way to prevent future accidents.
At Patterson Law Group, we understand the need for improved public safety, but we also know how challenging it can be for an individual to take on an insurance company in a slip and fall case. We’re here to help.
If you’re in need of Slip and Falls Attorneys in Texas, don’t hesitate to give us a call.
- Liability and damages for slip & fall cases
- Responsibility of the property owner
- Slip & fall statistics
- How Patterson Law Group can help
- Slip & fall FAQs
Liability and Damages for Slip and Fall Cases
Where the accident happens can influence the outcome of an insurance claim or lawsuit. Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, such as in the home, on a public sidewalk, at work, or in a store. Where the incident occurs will determine liability rules, what damages will be available, and what party to sue.
Texas follows a 51 percent modified comparative fault rule; this means that a victim cannot collect damages if they are more than 50 percent at fault for causing the accident. However, a slip and fall victim can collect damages if they are 50 percent or less at fault, but those damages would be reduced by degree of fault.
Responsibility of the Property Owner
Property owners have a responsibility to exercise a reasonable amount of care in maintaining a safe property. This includes regular inspection of the property, adequately notifying people of any dangers, and remedying those dangers in a safe and timely fashion. When a property owner fails to use reasonable care on their property, and someone is injured on that property as a result, the property owner can be held liable. This is where Patterson Law Group can help.
Our job is to prove the property owner:
- Created the dangerous condition;
- Knew about the danger and failed to correct it; or
- Should have known about the dangerous condition because a reasonable person in the same position would have discovered it and corrected it
Various circumstances may also place partial fault on the victim. For example: did they not see, or fail to read, a warning sign? We want to know what happened, so we can help you find the applicable relief. At Patterson Law Group, our first priority is getting your side of the story so we can determine an appropriate remedy.
Common Causes of Slip & Fall Accidents
You have to prove a few things in slip and fall cases if you want to get the most out of your case. The laws of Texas govern these.
Texas law states in a slip and fall case if the owner, lessee, or occupant of a property gives someone permission to visit their property and does not: “assure that the premises are safe for that purpose;” but does “owe to the person to whom permission is granted a greater degree of care than is owed to a trespasser on the premises, or assume responsibility or incur liability for any injury to any individual or property caused by any act of the person to whom permission is granted” they can be held liable for the injury.
Common objects that cause slips and falls include:
- Open cupboards
- Misplaced rugs
- Ice or spilled water
- Broken stairs
- Uneven flooring
- Cords and wires
If your fall was caused by one of these things and you believe that the owner/lessee/occupant of the property had knowledge of it, you can file a complaint against them.
Slip and Fall Statistics & Safety
Some people are more susceptible to serious slip and fall accidents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report 2.8 million older people are treated in emergency rooms for fall related injuries each year. Falls are one of the most common causes of traumatic brain injuries in the U.S. Many who fall, even if they’re not seriously injured, become afraid of falling. This fear may cause a person to change or cut down on their activities.
What To Do When You Slip And Fall In A Store?
If you slip and fall in a store, the first thing you need to do is make sure you get the medical attention you need to secure your health. However, once you are feeling better, there are a few more steps you should take.
Slips and falls are common causes of injury in the United States. The National Floor Safety Institute reports that slips cause 85% of all worker’s compensation claims. And over 60% of all nursing home residents will fall each year.
It is estimated that injuries related to falls cost the United States $13 to $14 million every year. If you have been in a slip and fall, you are not alone.
If you or a loved one has been injured and need help with their slip and fall case, our personal injury lawyers at Patterson Law Group are ready to help.
Common Injuries From A Slip And Fall
Slip and fall cases can vary widely, from causing superficial damage to your body to resulting in internal or brain injuries. Some of the most common slip & fall injuries include:
- Head injuries. If you hit your head when you fell, you may have suffered a concussion. If the hit was especially hard, it may also result in a more serious injury and cause permanent damage.
- Spinal cord injuries. If the fall compressed or severed your spinal cord, you could have severe injury to your back. In extreme cases, this type of injury leads to paralysis.
- Broken bones. Broken bones are especially common in older adults with the more fragile bone structure, but they could affect anyone who falls, especially on a hard surface.
- Tissue injuries. When you fall, your body will naturally twist in unnatural ways, which could easily result in a sprain or tear in your muscle tissue. These injuries are often not as noticeable at first, which is why you should get immediate medical attention.
- Cuts and scrapes. Usually, the least serious injuries affect your skin. In most cases, they will heal quickly and need only bandaging to heal. In more serious cases, you may need stitches.
If you have suffered from any of these injuries in a slip and fall, you could claim compensation for the harm that was caused you. Get in touch with a personal injury lawyer at the Patterson Law Group, and we can help you recover, no matter what your injury.
Types Of Damages In A Texas Slip And Fall Case
The damages you can claim in a Texas slip and fall case are the same you can claim in any personal injury case. Anything that you lost as a direct result of the fall can be used in a claim. For example, you could claim:
- Pain and suffering that you and your immediate family members have gone through as a result of the fall.
- Medical expenses that you have had to pay to get the treatment you need.
- Loss of income that resulted from you having to take time off work to heal.
- Loss of earning capacity if your injury resulted in you being unable to perform your usual duties at your job.
- Emotional trauma from the pain and stress resulting from your fall.
After an accident, make sure you keep records of all these things. That way, your personal injury lawyer can help you present the evidence you need to get a good settlement.
After you have received the treatment, you need to start feeling better, get in touch with a personal injury lawyer in Fort Worth, Texas at Patterson Law Group to get your case moving.
How Patterson Law Group Can Help
Regardless of where a slip and fall accident occurs, or to whom it happens, we act on behalf of victims, or their families, to uphold their rights and aid in various legal challenges.
At Patterson Law Group, we’ve helped slip and fall victims build successful cases and earn compensation for their medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional pain and suffering. Below is a review from one of our recent clients, Ed:
Slip & Fall Accidents FAQs
If I slip and fall at a friend or neighbor’s house can I still file a lawsuit?
If you were injured as a social guest at a friend or neighbor’s house, you may still be able to recover from the host. You might initially be hesitant to file a lawsuit against someone you care about. The last thing you want to do is damage a good relationship. However, it can be incredibly taxing to have to have to deal with medical bills alone.
It’s important to remember that you aren’t suing the property owner. Rather, you’re suing the property owner’s insurance company. Your friend or family member would not be responsible for paying any damages.
Who can be held liable in a slip & fall accident?
There are often a number of people or entities who may be held responsible for a slip and fall accident. Liable individuals and organizations could include stores, hotels, restaurants, bars, clubs, government municipalities, and more.
Can I still file a claim if I was intoxicated when I slip and fell?
It’s no secret that alcohol and other drugs can severely dampen coordination, sight, and judgement. If you were intoxicated during a slip and fall accident, your ability to recover will likely be greatly reduced. However, bars, clubs, and restaurants have a responsibility to avoid selling alcohol to any customer that is obviously intoxicated. Establishments that over-serve patrons can be held liable for slip and fall accidents.
Can I still file a claim if there was a warning sign?
If there was a warning sign pertaining to a danger or hazard that caused your slip and fall accident, it is generally still possible to recover for any resulting injuries. Nevertheless, recovering compensation will likely be more difficult. The visibility of the sign should be taken into account when determining liability. In cases where a “Do Not Enter” sign is posted, trespassers are still owed a legal duty to be reasonably warned of any potential dangers or hazards.