If you were involved in and slip and fall accidents on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to compensation. Property owners, such as business owners, owe a duty of care to anyone who steps foot on their property. According to their duty of care, they must keep all visitors reasonably safe.
Business owners are required to keep their property free of any hazards that could potentially cause people harm. If you are injured in a slip and fall accident because these conditions were not met, contact one of our talented attorneys for help filing a lawsuit.
Causes of Slips and Falls at a Retail Store
Many things can cause a slip and fall to occur inside a retail store, but here are the main reasons these accidents occur:
- Uneven surfaces
- Recently mopped or waxes floors
- Loose floorboards
- Spills that aren’t cleaned up
- Trash, debris, or clutter on the floor
- Poor lighting
- No handrail
It’s important to remember that a store owner can only be negligent if they haven’t taken reasonable action to fix the problem at hand. If the hazard is being cleaned up or has a sign stating the hazard and someone hurts themselves, this may not be considered negligence on behalf of the store owner.
What does Florida’s Premises Liability Law have to say?
Under Florida’s premises liability law, any store owners are to be half liable when an injury occurs on their property. It also states that they must keep their property in a safe condition to prevent anyone from getting injured.
When is a property owner liable for a slip and fall accident?
A property owner is liable for any accident that occurs because of their own negligence. Negligence is determined in a four-step process:
- There must be an existence of “duty of care” that the defendant owed to the plaintiff. In this case, the duty of care is the shop owner’s responsibility to keep their patrons safe.
- For example, if the shop owner failed to clean up a spill or fix a loose floorboard, they could be liable. However, if someone tripped over a loose floorboard before they had the chance to fix it, they may not be liable.
- You must be able to prove that the defendant did, in fact, breach said duty.
- The plaintiff must have suffered an injury directly because of the breach.
- There must be claimable damages associated with the injury.
Basically, you must prove that because the store owner acted with negligence, your injuries occurred. Your attorney will gather evidence to build your case, such as camera footage, witness statements, and more to determine liability fully.
What damages can I be compensated for in my injury claim?
You may be stressed about the bills you’ve accumulated and the wages that you’ve lost since the accident. Our attorneys here at Jones Law Group can make sure that you get the compensation you deserve for your damages.
Economic damages cover monetary losses like medical bills (ambulance rides, doctor’s appointments, physical therapy, surgery costs, and more) and lost wages. You may have lost wages while you were recovering from your injuries. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may be out of work for a while.
Non-economic damages aren’t as cut and dry as economic damages, as they don’t have a monetary value associated with them. Non-economic damages are used to cover losses like pain and suffering, loss of consortium, loss of earning capacity, permanent disability, disfigurement, and scarring, and more.
More severe injuries, such as traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injuries, have a greater impact on one’s life, causing a complete change to the way people go about their day, leading to a change in one’s quality of life. The more a person’s quality of life changes for the worse, the higher their compensation is likely to be.
What to do Immediately After a Slip and Fall
After being involved in a personal injury accident, you should always try to remain calm and avoid stress. We know that these situations are stressful, but it’s important to keep a level head. After you’ve been injured, you should gather as much evidence as you can at the scene of the accident before leaving to receive medical attention.
It would help if you took pictures of the accident, showcasing what caused you to slip or fall. It’s important to take these pictures as the store will try to clean up/fix the issue as soon as possible after leaving, making it harder for further investigation.
You should also speak to any witnesses and exchange information with them. Let them know that an attorney may be in touch in the future. Speak with the owner of the property, but don’t discuss fault or apologize in any way. Get their information and make the conversation short and sweet.
Even if you don’t believe that you are injured, you should head directly to the emergency room following your accident. Some injuries, like internal bleeding and organ damage, don’t show themselves right away. The pain associated with them can be covered up by adrenaline from the accident.
If you don’t seek immediate medical attention, your injuries could worsen, and the insurance companies will try and argue that your injuries must not have been that bad if you didn’t seek immediate medical attention.
When to hire a personal injury lawyer?
It’s important to hire a personal injury lawyer before talking to insurance companies so that your lawyer will represent your best interests. Insurance companies will try and trick you into signing away your right to sue by offering you quick cash. Don’t take this money. An experienced slip and fall accident attorney will be able to get you much more.
If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident, please contact our talented team of attorneys here at Jones Law Group in Florida. For more information or a free case evaluation, contact us online using our chat box option or by calling us at 727-571-1333.