It happens all the time.
People slip and fall on newly-waxed floors and wet surfaces that were just cleaned.
What doesn’t happen all the time is the guilty party being brought to justice.
In most cases, this means filing a civil suit and making the store pay for your injuries.
If you recently slipped and fell, here’s what you need to do.
You must document your injuries. Go to the doctor. Get a medical opinion on the extent of your injuries, and take pictures of everything. Make sure that you get as many pictures as you can before you leave the scene as this will help you later.
Also, write down what happened immediately afterwards. Get eye-witnesses to write down (or record them on video) what happened.
Get Ready To Prove Negligence
A store or business is only liable for a slip and fall when it happens on their property and it the business was negligent. That negligence must also be what caused the accident. If you simply slip and fall on the business’s property, that’s not automatically grounds for a suit. There must exist an unsafe condition and you must prove that the business should have reasonably known of this unsafe condition and did nothing. That’s negligence.
Know Who You Can Sue
Generally, you will be suing the business owner. But, if the issue was with the building or grounds, and the business simply leases the property, then you will likely need to sue the property owner or landlord. This is where an attorney like injuryclaimnyclaw.com, a Charleston personal injury attorney, can be helpful.
They can help you navigate this area of the law so that you don’t end up suing the wrong person in court (which will get the case thrown out).
The Fine Print
This is where most people get tripped up. Remember that you have to be able to prove negligence to win a case against a store owner. Even if you have the best lawyer in the city, you won’t be able to win anything without proving negligence.
A few things that stop a case from moving forward include the actual conditions of where you slipped and fell, whether the floor was unreasonably slippery, how long the floor had been like that, and whether the store knew about the condition (or should have) and chose to do nothing.
This isn’t as easy as it might seem. A lawyer must build a case against a company, prove that a manager, or that some other executive who has responsibility for the store, knew that there was an unsafe condition on the floor, or in the parking lot, and that this condition was preventable by the store.
The lawyer must also prove that the owner or management understood the risks, and that they chose to ignore them or that they actively avoided knowing or understanding them and that you were injured as a direct result of this.
Be prepared for a long battle, and be patient.
By Morgan Todd
Morgan is a law student who is leaning towards injury compensation work. In her spare time you'll find her writing, whether that be articles or her crime novel!