On a daily basis many individuals slip or fall in the privacy of their home or while out in public. Slip, trip, and fall accidents are the result of many different circumstances, some of which are no fault of anyone involved. However, there are some instances in which a business owner’s negligent behavior causes individuals to slip and fall while on the business premises. In these instances, the business owner should be held responsible. If you or your loved one has been injured in a slip or fall accident due to another’s negligence, contact Colombo Law today to determine your rights.
If you have suffered a slip and fall on the premises of a business, you may be entitled to monetary relief. It is important to understand that the slip and fall need not occur in one particular place. Common areas for slip and falls include:
- Parking lots
- Inside a store premises
- Surrounding pool areas
The location of the fall however is important to determine liability. For instance, the owner of an outlet mall may be responsible for a slip and fall in a parking lot. However, if the accident occurs inside a specific store liability may shift from the owner of the outlet mall to the owner of the store location.
Causes of Slip and Falls
Some common causes of negligence actions result from injuries related to:
- Spills and Substances: Claims related to spills and substances are most frequently seen in grocery stores and department stores. Business owners have an obligation to ensure that their store premises are safe for customers. This requires the owners to ensure that there are no liquids or other substances on the property that may create a hazard.
- Lack of maintenance or upkeep: Failing to properly maintain a premises creates a significant hazard both inside and outside of the premises. In parking lots, potholes and weather related accidents can cause individuals to slip trip or fall and sustain significant injury. Failing to properly maintain the property could result in an owner’s liability.
After an Accident Gather Evidence and Preserve Your Claim
In personal injury actions, the burden of proving negligence is on the Plaintiff (the person bringing the lawsuit). Therefore it is important to gather any evidence that can be helpful in the event that a lawsuit is necessary. After an accident be sure to obtain copies of any incidents reports filed. Also, take pictures and notes of the type of substance that caused you to slip and fall. Any notes should describe whether the substance is sticky, slick, or gritty.
Finally, you want to be sure you preserve your claim. In West Virginia, there is a two year statute of limitation on personal injury actions. After an accident many individuals express feelings of being overwhelmed as there are many increased obligations including adding doctor’s visits and other appointments to preexisting work and familial obligations. Although the increased obligations make it easy to fail to tend to other responsibilities, you want to be sure to contact an experienced attorney at Colombo Law who can assist you in your legal action before your claim expires.