Why Legal Action is Important with Slips and Falls
Unintentional falls account for over 19,000 deaths each year in the U.S., according to the CDC. Slips and falls account for 12-15% of all workers' compensation expenses. Workers who are injured on the job are quick to make workers' compensation claims for their injuries, but the everyday person often puts off making a claim.
Victims may not know that they are eligible to make a claim, or they may not realize the long-term impacts of the injury.Valid Slip and Fall Claims
Some slip and fall injuries are true accidents, but many are the result of negligence on behalf of a government entity or property owner. These entities are responsible for maintaining entryways, sidewalks and other common areas.
Common dangerous conditions that can lead to a valid premises liability case include:
- Unmarked danger zones
- Damaged parking areas, sidewalks, driveways and paths
- Poorly-lit walkways
- Poorly maintained stairs
- Safety code violations
- Slippery sidewalks
Property owners aren't automatically considered negligent in slip and fall cases. To win a case, you must prove that the owner knew about the dangerous condition and failed to do anything about it.Why Legal Action is Important with Slips and Falls
It's common for people to slip, fall and get on with their lives. The injury may appear to be mild, so they avoid seeing a doctor and carry on with their day. But the lasting effects of a slip and fall injury may not be apparent until later on down the road.
For children and the elderly especially, it's important to see a doctor and take legal action if you have a valid case.
Children may suffer dislocations of their lumbar, thoracic or cervical vertebrae, which can cause ongoing medical issues for the rest of the child's life. Many adults develop significant back problems because of childhood falls.
Between 60% and 80% of falls in children occur on the playground. About 200,000 children are taken to the emergency room due to playground injuries.
Elderly individuals may suffer more serious injuries, including sprains, fractures, bruises, strains and lacerations. In many cases, seniors are forced to move into nursing home facilities after a serious slip and fall accident.
Increased financial obligations due to slip and fall accidents can put a great strain on families. Falls cause $100 billion in losses each year. If the injury requires ongoing medical care, taking legal action and recovering compensation can help ease the financial burden of the injury.
Taking legal action will require the help of an attorney. Negligence must be proven to win the lawsuit, and this can be a complex process which typically involves:
- Gathering evidence
- Explaining injuries accurately
- Developing a legal strategy
The short- and long-term effects of the injuries must be described in detail to prove pain, suffering, and potentially, permanent damage.
Slip and fall accidents are some of the most common personal injuries, but many people fail to take legal action which could ease their financial burden. Holding the negligent party accountable for their actions will ensure that your medical bills are paid and that you are compensated for your pain and suffering.