Injured In A Slip And Fall? 3 Facts You Should Know Before Filing A Claim
Were you recently injured in a slip and fall accident? If so, you may be able to collect compensation for your injuries by filing a personal injury claim. However, you should know that not all slip and fall accidents will result in a viable injury claim. This is because there are three basic facts that must be present in order for you to successfully collect compensation. These facts are that it an individual or company is legally liable for your accident, that your assumption of risk was reasonable, and that you suffered real damages as a result of your accident. Below you will learn more about each of these facts and how they pertain to your ability to file a personal injury claim.
An Individual Or Company Is Legally Liable For Your Accident
In order to be held legally liable for causing your accident, the other parties named in your case must have acted in a negligent or incompetent manner. Furthermore, this negligence or incompetence must have directly resulted in your accident. For example, if you slipped and fell on a patch of ice in the parking lot of a local retailer, that retailer may be held legally liable for causing your injuries if they chose to ignore the presence of ice in their parking lot.
Your Assumption Of Risk Was Reasonable
Everyone must take some risks each and every day. However, responsible individuals choose the risks they take carefully in order to minimize their risk of being injured. For instance, each time you get behind the wheel of your vehicle, you are taking the risk of being involved in an accident. However, if you insist on only driving vehicles with functioning safety equipment, wear your seat belt, and avoid construction zones, your risk of being involved in an accident will be greatly decreased.
Before you are able to sue another party for damages, you will need to be able to demonstrate that your assumption of risk was reasonable. Using the slip and fall example above, the key to determining whether or not your assumption of risk was reasonable will likely be the time of day that the accident occurred. This is because the retailer can only be expected to maintain a safe parking lot during the hours that they are open for business. Therefore, if you slip on a patch of ice after the store has closed for the night, it is not reasonable for you to assume that all of the ice would have been removed.
You Suffered Real Damages As A Result Of Your Accident
You can only collect damages in a personal injury case if you have suffered a financial loss as a result of your injuries. This financial loss can be the result of medical bills or lost wages. If real damages are present in your case, you may also be able to seek punitive damages, such as those awarded for pain and suffering. However, you cannot seek out these punitive damages unless real damages also exist.
If all three of the facts outlined above pertain to your case, there is a good chance that you can collect compensation for your injuries. However, the final decision regarding the pursuit of your case should be made by a qualified attorney (such as one from Putnam Lieb). Thankfully, many slip and fall accident attorneys will offer you the ability to take advantage of a free initial consultation so that you can get the answers you need regarding the merit of your case.