Florida’s heat, humidity, and rapidly growing trees can create sidewalks that are dangerous to walk on due to cracks, holes, and broken or uneven surfaces. Still, property owners are responsible for ensuring that sidewalks are maintained in a condition that is safe for people to walk on. If they do not, and someone trips and is injured as a result, the property owner may be held liable.
If you or a loved one has been injured because of trips or falls due to unsafe sidewalk conditions on someone else’s property, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries through insurance or a premise liability lawsuit. A Boca Raton cracked or defective or broken sidewalks lawyer at the Law Offices of Andijar & Levine may be able to help. We provide a free consultation to discuss the circumstances of your case and determine the best approach to take, and there are no fees to you unless we win your case. Call us today to get started at 1-800-747-3733.
Proving Negligence and Responsibility
People walking on sidewalks are supposed to look where they are going and use caution, so not every fall is someone else’s responsibility. To win your case, your attorney will have to prove that the entity that owns the property was aware or should have been aware of the dangerous conditions present on the sidewalk, but did not fix or warn about the conditions, and was therefore negligent, responsible, and liable for your injuries.
Property owners have what is known as a duty of care to those who lawfully come on their property. This means they have the duty:
- To use reasonable care in maintaining the property in a reasonably safe condition; and
- To warn of dangers that exist
If the property owner breached this duty by actions or by not acting, and this breach caused your injuries and you suffered actual damages as a result, the property owner may be found liable for your damages and have to pay compensation.
Damages You May Recover
If you win your case, you will be entitled to a settlement award for compensation, known as damages. In a Florida slip and fall or premises liability case, you may be entitled to the following types of damages:
- Monetary costs of past and future medical treatment for injuries
- Loss of wages and future wage loss
- Pain and suffering resulting from the accident, including pain while recovering and future pain
Some of the injuries you may receive from a broken sidewalk fall include:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Spinal cord and neck injuries
- Concussions and traumatic brain injuries
The more severe your injury and the more medical care and future treatment involved, the more your case may be worth.
While it is easy to calculate the cost of medical treatment and wage loss, your pain and suffering damages are harder to put a dollar value on. Our lawyers would have to show the severity of your injuries, the medical and rehabilitative care necessary over a period of time, and the effects the injuries will have on your life.
Call Anidjar & Levine today at 1-800-747-3733 to find out how a Boca Raton cracked or defective or broken sidewalks lawyer may be able to help you.
How An Attorney May Be Able to Help
Premise liability cases in Florida are complicated by the fact that the property owners and their lawyers may try to make it seem as if you were careless and the fall was your fault. According to Florida Statute § 768.81, if you did something that contributed to your fall, your damage award may be lowered in proportion to the amount of fault you bear. However, our attorneys may still be able to help you get a damage award for the proportion of the property owner’s fault, even if your fault was greater than 50 percent.
Another claim property owners may make is that they were never notified of the risk or that they did not have enough time or resources to fix it before you were injured. Our lawyers are prepared to combat these arguments. We may:
- Investigate the accident scene to gather evidence
- Take photos of the damaged sidewalk
- Look for videos from surveillance cameras that may have captured your fall
- Review doctor and police reports and property repair records
- Interview witnesses
- Hire experts to reconstruct the accident, testify as to what happened, and project your future expenses and care
If the sidewalk was owned by a public entity, such as a city, county or state, special rules may apply. In Florida, you must first file a “notice of claim” with the government entity at the Florida Department of Financial Services. In addition, the statute of limitations for filing a claim against the state is shorter than that for cases against private individuals, so you should act quickly.
Our attorneys may also help by negotiating with insurance companies, who are out for profit and may try to get you to accept the lowest amount possible. We are familiar with their tactics and will fight for your right to optimum compensation and take your case to court if necessary.
Contact the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for Help
Florida laws regarding broken sidewalks are complicated, so it may help to have a Boca Raton cracked or defective or broken sidewalks lawyer on your side to:
- Determine what your case is worth
- File all papers in a timely manner
- Deal with insurance companies
- Navigate all legal hurdles involved
Call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine today for your free and confidential consultation to discuss the circumstance of your case at 1-800-747-3733. You worry about getting better. We take care of everything else.
We Can Help.