What you should know about slip and fall accidents
Over 1 million people in the United States are admitted to emergency rooms for slip and fall injuries. These types of accidents are a leading cause of injury in the country, including those that are caused by the negligence of someone else.
Unfortunately, there are a number of widespread myths and misconceptions out there about slip and fall cases. In this article, we’ll address the most common myths so that you know all the facts.
Myth #1: A person can only seek compensation for physical injury
in a slip and fall case.
A misconception held by more than a few people about slip and fall cases is that you can only obtain compensation for physical injuries and nothing more. The reality is that you can not only seek financial compensation for physical injuries, but also for other losses that include:
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
If the action (or lack of action) by a person responsible for the premises where a slip and fall accident occurred is particularly reckless, an injured person may be able to also seek what is known as punitive or exemplary damages in certain circumstances. These damages represent additional financial recovery for that egregious or reckless action (or inaction).
Myth #2: You can’t pursue a slip and fall claim if there was a warning sign.
Another pervasive myth about slip and fall cases is that you can’t pursue a claim or lawsuit if you slipped on a floor in an area where some type of warning sign was placed.
However, the presence of such a sign alone doesn’t prevent the pursuit of a case. The same holds true for a generalized sign at an establishment that reads something like “enter at your own risk.” Sign or no sign, the owner or party responsible for the premises must still exercise reasonable care to keep people safe at the property.
Myth #3: You can’t recover compensation if a property owner was unaware
of a dangerous condition.
A third frequent misconception associated with slip and fall cases is that the property owner, or another party responsible for the premises, is not obligated to pay compensation to an injured person if they were unaware of a dangerous situation.
In fact, the owner of a property or another entity responsible for the premises is responsible for injuries and can be made to pay damages as long as that person reasonably should have known of the existence of a dangerous situation.
In addition, when an owner or related party becomes aware of a dangerous situation, the person has a legal obligation to address the danger in a reasonable period of time. For example, something like spilled liquid on the floor of a store should reasonably be cleaned up immediately. Any unreasonable delay renders the owner or related party responsible for injuries sustained by a customer who slips and falls.
Myth #4: You can’t recover compensation if a slip and fall accident occurred
in a public area.
Yet another misconception about slip and fall cases is that you can’t recover financial compensation if an accident occurred in a public location like a park or sidewalk. In this day and age, public areas oftentimes are managed or even owned in some way by private entities. These private entities are responsible for the care and maintenance of these public areas and can be held responsible for injuries, losses and damages in a slip and fall case.
In addition, in certain cases even government agencies can be deemed responsible and obliged to compensate a person injured in a slip and fall incident in a public area.
Myth #5: You don’t need legal representation.
If you have questions about a slip and fall accident, the best way to get accurate information is to schedule an initial consultation with a personal injury attorney. A slip and fall accident lawyer will answer any questions that you might have about your accident.
Bear in mind that the statute of limitations limits the timeframe within which you are able to file a slip and fall lawsuit. Consult with an experienced slip and fall accident lawyer at the Tragos Law Firm as soon as possible following your injury.
Contact our Tampa slip and fall lawyers today for your free consultation.