Slip and Fall Lawyers Serving Wellington
No matter our age, it can be said that just about every one of us has, at one time or another, experienced the unpleasant situation of slipping or tripping and falling down. For the majority of us, this happens when we are children and have yet to establish our balance when walking or running. Fortunately, when we’re kids that type of fall will usually only result in a skinned knee or other minor cut/abrasion. But, as adults, a slip and fall accident can sometimes result in a serious injury that requires immediate medical attention. Additionally, there may also be a need to contact Slip and Fall lawyers who serve Wellington in order to find assistance for a negligence claim.
When we take a look at slip or trip and fall incidents, we tend to discover that the majority of them are quite accidental. An example of this would be a case in which someone slipped on a puddle of spilled liquid. As a result of the subsequent fall, an injury resulted that required medical care and time spent in the healing process.
But there are other times in which this particular situation would have been completely avoidable. For example, a leaking vending machine may be creating wet spots on a commercial building floor. If a situation like this was known to the building manager or owner and nothing was done about it, it could create a hazardous situation. This is especially true if the area wasn’t marked with signage that warned of a slipping hazard. This scenario could constitute negligence on the part of the part of the building manager/owner. If someone became injured as a result of this negligence, then they might have a case for filing a lawsuit in order to receive compensation for any resultant damages.What laws pertain to Wellington slip and fall accident injuries?
When it comes to slip and fall accidents, Wellington has a number of legal stipulations that pertain to those who wish to pursue restitution when it comes to filing lawsuits. Let’s assume, for example, that you’re in a commercial building and you’ve suddenly slipped on a floor’s wet spot that was entirely unmarked as a hazard.
Because of this accident, you are the victim of a serious injury and wish to be compensated by means of a lawsuit. The first thing that you may need to consider is the fact that there is a statute of limitations in these matters. In this type of situation, you will be allowed 4 years from the time of your accident in order to file your lawsuit. (Florida Statute section 95.11(3)(a)). In cases in which the victim died as a result of the fall, close family members or the victim’s estate will have 2 years from the time of the accident in order to file a lawsuit.Is there a Pure Comparative Negligence Rule that applies?
When attempting to file a slip and fall lawsuit, you may run into an item known as the Comparative Negligence Rule. This is something that a representative attorney for the building (defendant) may readily bring up. The rule basically states that, in the case of an accident such as this, the victim may have also been partly responsible for the slip and fall injury. If the court determines that both parties were at fault, then they would assign a percentage of the blame to each party which will directly affect how much restitution will be awarded. Therefore, the percentage of negligence depends on the circumstances of each case. This is just one reason why it’s a good idea to seek the assistance of experienced slip and fall attorneys who serve Wellington.
In order to illustrate how this works, let’s use the previous example of someone who has slipped on a floor’s wet spot. There are some accepted factors that a court will take into consideration in favor of the building’s defense. These can include:
- Was there a sign posted that warned of a potential hazard?
- Was the victim wearing shoes that could easily cause them to slip?
- Was the victim in an area that was off limits to regular traffic?
- Was the victim distracted (cell phone use, etc.)?
If any of these circumstances exist, then the court may well decide that the person who fell was also partially responsible for the accident. This, of course, will directly affect their decision when it comes to awarding damages.
This is precisely where someone can experience a situation in which the building’s representative will claim that the building owner has no legal responsibility in this case and should not have to pay any damages. Even in situations where there is an out-of-court settlement, comparative negligence can be a determining factor when it comes to restitution.What do I do if I am involved in a Wellington slip & fall accident?
If you should become involved in this type of accident, Slip and Fall Lawyers Serving Wellington will generally suggest that certain action be taken. These are designed to prevent further injuries and to possibly aid in a future lawsuit. These steps are:
- Always make your own health and well-being a priority. If you’ve just fallen, determine whether or not you can still become mobile or whether you need transportation to a local hospital. Call for help, if needed. In any case, you should make an immediate visit to your local hospital emergency room or your personal physician for a complete physical checkup. This is extremely important because certain injuries may not manifest until later on. Make sure to keep a record of any expenses and place them in a separate file at home. Also, make a follow up doctor’s appointment in order to see if there have been any further changes. Do these things even if you feel fine! If you have suffered a noticeable injury, you may wish to keep a personal diary that documents your healing process.
- Right after your initial fall, don’t leave the building//property without first letting the building management know what happened. File a report with the building management and make sure to get a copy of that report! Do not discuss the accident with the building management beyond the basic details.
- Make sure to document all of the accident details. If possible, take photos of the accident area. In addition, you should also keep the shoes and clothing that you were wearing at the time of the accident in a bag, located separately in your home. While this may seem a bit odd, you would be surprised at how often this became highly useful in a lawsuit proceeding.
- Keep quiet about the incident. DO NOT POST any details of the accident on social media. You should also refrain from having discussions with the building’s insurance representatives. NEVER sign any waivers or cash any checks that you are given, prior to discussing it with your own slip and fall lawyer.
- Seek the immediate advice of a Slip and Fall lawyer in Wellington. You won’t have to pay anything for your first appointment and you can get some advice as to what your options are. This can also be very helpful when you consider the complications that can come with dealing with a legal procedure, such as a lawsuit.
You may also refer to this video.What do you need to prove in a Wellington slip-and-fall injury lawsuit?
When it comes to a slip and fall injury, the fault for the accident may rest on the owner of the property. This occurs because Florida statutes require that property owners must keep their property safe for those who have invited onto the property. Here, it’s important to know the difference between: Invitees vs. Licensees vs. Trespassers.
- An Invitee – is anyone who is allowed access to a property or land by the possessor of the property for the purpose of the property owner’s financial gain (store shoppers, delivery persons, those entering a property that is open to the public, etc.)
- A Licensee – is anyone who is allowed access to a property or land by the possessor of the property for reasons other than the financial gain of the property owner. (family, friends, unsolicited salespersons, etc.)
- A Trespasser – is anyone who enters a premises or land without the consent of the owner. One may be considered a trespasser even if they were unaware that they were trespassing.
For those who suffered the effects of a slip and fall accident, their injuries may be a result of negligence on the part of the property owner. This happens when the property has failed to keep their property in a “reasonably safe condition”.
For example, Florida statute 768.0755 states that a liability issue might be present in those cases in which “transitory foreign objects” were discovered to have been located on a walkway”. There are also other situations in which property owners may be liable for accidents that may occur due to negligent property maintenance practices
The four basic issues that must be proven in a slip and fall negligence lawsuit are:
- 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 maintenance, specifically at the location where the accident took place.
- As a result of this “lack of reasonable care”, an accident has occurred
- Damages were obtained as a direct result of that accident
There are several statutes that will directly apply to Wellington properties. 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
The types of injuries and reasons for restitution that can be suffered in a Wellington slip and fall accident are:
- Injuries to the back, neck, shoulder and/or buttocks.
- Spinal damage injuries that have led to permanent disability.
- 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
- Medical expenses
- Damaged property (cell phones, etc.)
- Other issues that may have been the result of the accident
The length of time that a slip and fall lawsuit can take and the amount of restitution received will, of course, entirely depend on the actual circumstances of the case. This is why it can be very important to consult with an experienced and dedicated slip and fall attorney.Enlist an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer to Protect Your Rights
Severe injuries from slip and fall accidents can be the result of property maintenance negligence, which may occur in Wellington at any given time. In addition, it’s important to understand that while pits and holes are often a factor, there are also many times when this isn’t the situation. There have been a number of cases in which neglected trash, liquid spills and faulty steps and railings has resulted in an injury that eventually led to a severe injury Therefore, if you or a loved one 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.Types of Slip and Fall Cases We Handle
- Slip and Falls at Private Residences
- Retail Stores or Shopping Malls
- Grocery Stores
- Restaurants, Hotels, Nightclubs
- Schools, Parks, Sports Stadiums
- Parking Garage or Parking Lots
- Amusement Parks
Discuss your case with a Slip and Fall Personal Injury Attorney Serving Wellington Today! Turn to Frankl & Kominsky for comprehensive legal guidance. Call 561-800-8000 or use our Contact Form to set up a free consultation.