Slip and Fall Lawyers serving Royal Palm Beach
It doesn’t matter what age you happen to be. All of us have experienced, at one time or another, the unpleasant occurrence of slipping on something and sustaining a completely unexpected fall. The type of injuries that may have resulted from this accident could have ranged from a skinned knee, as a child, to something far more serious. Unfortunately for many, a slip and fall accident injury can result in a severe injury such as: disc herniations, fractures, muscle tears, lacerations and far worse. As a matter of fact, in some cases, a slip and fall injury in Royal Palm Beach can have life-changing consequences that one may be totally unprepared to handle.
In most cases, a slip and fall injury has come about as a completely accidental situation. For example, a person may not have seen some spilled liquid on the ground and slipped as a result of stepping in it. However, there are other occasions when a slip and fall injury could have been completely avoided if the proper care had been taken in order to create a safe environment. In situations such as this, you will want to understand the best way to proceed in order to deal with any subsequent expenses that have occurred from this type of accident. This is especially true when a debilitating injury has resulted from the fall.What are the laws that pertain to Royal Palm Beach slip and fall accidents?
There are a number of different legal considerations that apply to slip and fall accidents, but one of the first to consider has to do with the statute of limitations. For example, let’s assume that you have slipped on a wet spot that was unmarked on a commercial building’s floor. As a result, you’ve sustained a serious injury and you wish to file a lawsuit against the owner of the building. You goal is to be compensated for your medical expenses and any other losses that may have been incurred. In this case, you are generally allowed four years, from the time of the accident, in order to file your lawsuit. (Florida Statute section 95.11(3)(a)) Should you wait until after the 4 year period to file, then you may discover that your lawsuit will immediately be dismissed (unless some very rare circumstances apply). If you are a close family member who is filing a wrongful death lawsuit in a slip and fall accident occurrence, then the statute of limitations is just 2 years from the time of the accident.How does the Pure Comparative Negligence Rule apply?
Should you be filing a lawsuit in the case of a slip and fall accident injury, then you may find that something known as the Comparative Negligence Rule will be applied to your case. This is a rule that exists for Royal Palm Beach accidents (as well as the rest of the state). In essence, this rule mandates that should an accident occur, negligence determinations may be assigned to both parties. The percentage of negligence will depend on the actual circumstances of the accident.
Let’s use the example of the earlier mentioned slip and fall on a commercial building floor’s wet spot that was unmarked. If the area had been posted as “unsafe flooring due to periodic water leaks”, then the court may decide that you will also share some of the responsibility by not taking note of the posted warning. In a case such as this, the court may decide that you will also be responsible for a percentage of the expenses that have occurred as a result of that fall and its subsequent injury.
This is where you can run into a situation in which a representative for the commercial property owner will claim their client has no legal responsibility to pay damages. They will present a case that stipulates that the area was adequately marked as a hazardous area and the person who slipped just didn’t pay enough attention to the warning. Other types of similar arguments may include:
- The victim was wearing unsafe footwear
- The danger was obvious enough to be easily seen
- The accident occurred in a restricted area
- The victim was distracted by using their cell phone, etc.
These are things to keep in mind, since even in cases that are settled out of court, these things will usually be figured into the settlement amount which is offered.What should you do in the case of a slip and fall accident?
When someone is involved in a slip and fall accident there are some suggested actions that the individual can follow. These suggestions are designed to prevent further injury and to possibly assist in any restitution-related actions. These are:
- Of course, in any type of accident that can cause an injury, your first priority is to make sure that you’re alright. If needed, you should immediately call for help. In addition, you will want to make an immediate visit to the nearest hospital emergency room or your own physician. There, you will want to get a complete evaluation of your physical situation. This can serve to detect a slip and fall injury that might not be obvious, at first. This can include a minor fracture that may eventually evolve into something far more serious. You will also want to make sure that you have everything documented and save copies of any medical bills and evaluations. These should be stored in your home and placed in a separate file in order to have easy access, should they be needed. You should also set up a follow up appointment in order to determine if any other injuries have since manifested. Also, you may want to keep a personal journal regarding your progress when it comes to healing.
- Before leaving the property after the initial accident occurrence, you should immediately inform the property owner of the accident that you just sustained. If you are unable to get in touch with the property owner, then make your report to the manager of the property. Any report should be made in writing and you should keep a copy for yourself. Make sure not to leave the property without a copy of the report you’re filing.
- All details of the accident need to be documented, to include any witnesses and their contact information. Interestingly enough, you will also want to keep the clothes and shoes that you were wearing, in a separate location in your home. This might be used to establish that you weren’t wearing any clothing that might have led to the accident. This can be an extremely important step.
- REFRAIN FROM POSTING ANY INFORMATION REGARDING THE ACCIDENT ON SOCIAL MEDIA. Also, avoid having any lengthy conversations with the property owner or the property manager. This also holds true for conversing with the property’s insurance representative.
- Seek the advice of a Royal Palm Beach slip and fall accident injuries attorney. You won’t have to pay anything for your first consultation, since it’s free. There, you can discuss what your options might be and discuss any potential damages. When it comes to a situation in which you’re requesting compensation, you will find that it’s a very complicated legal process and you may wish to obtain some assistance with this procedure.
Sometimes the fault for a slip and fall injury can be the result of negligence on the part of a property owner. This situation may be determined in cases in which the owner of the property failed to keep their premises in a “reasonably safe condition”. For example, Florida statute 768.0755 states that a liability issue may be present in cases in which “transitory foreign objects” were discovered to have been located on a walkway. There are also many other situations in which a property owner may be liable for an accident that occurs, due to property maintenance negligence.
The basic proof that is needed in order to determine the property owner’s negligence in a slip and fall accident injury case involves:
- The injured party was owed a “duty of care” from the property manager/owner who had provided the injured party an initial invitation. The duty of care was to provide a reasonably safe environment.
- “Reasonable care” was not exercised when it came to the property’s maintenance, at the location where the accident took place.
- As a result of this lack of reasonable care, an accident had occurred
- Damages were suffered as a direct result of the accident
There are several statutes that directly apply to Royal Palm Beach properties (this also includes the rest of the state, as well). These statutes specify:
- Statute 768.0425 (1) relates to claiming damages in actions against contractors for the injuries sustained from negligence, malfeasance, or misfeasance.
- Statute 768.0755 (1) relates to Premises liability for transitory foreign substances in a commercial establishment.—
- (1) If a person slips and falls on a transitory foreign substance in a business establishment, the injured person must prove that the business establishment had actual or constructive knowledge of the dangerous condition and should have taken action to remedy it.
- Statute 768.10 relates to pits and holes that should not be left open. It is not lawful for any company or individual to leave open any pit or other hole outside of an enclosure of a greater depth and breadth than 2 feet; provided, however, such pit or hole may be left open by enclosing the same with a fence or other enclosure.
Needless to say, in situations that involve a slip and fall injury in a Royal Palm Beach injury lawsuit, the amount of restitution that may be awarded will depend on many different factors. Of the main issue has to do with the type of injury that was incurred. However, there are some common types of damages that have, in the past, been awarded in cases such as these. These types of damages include:
- Past medical expenses
- Future medical expenses
- Current and future income that was lost due to the accident
- The emotional distress that was suffered due to the process of healing and economic issues
- Pain and suffering
- Damaged property (cell phones, etc.)
- Other issues that may have been the result of the accident
Deaths and injuries from slip and fall accidents can be the result of property maintenance negligence, which may occur in Royal Palm Beach at any given time. If you are involved in a slip and fall accident that occurred on a private or commercial property, it is advised that you seek medical care and the advice of a slip and fall personal injury attorney.
See the advice of a slip and fall personal injury attorney who can try to assist in receiving the best care and compensation that you rightfully deserve. Therefore, when you or a loved one are involved in a Royal Palm Beach slip and fall accident, contact a Florida personal injury attorney.
Discuss your case with a Slip and Fall Personal Injury Attorney Serving Royal Palm Beach Today! Turn to Frankl & Kominsky for comprehensive legal guidance. Call 561-800-8000 or use our Contact Form to set up a free consultation.