Cracked, defective, or broken sidewalks can result in serious trip and fall injuries, and if you have been injured in this way, you could be entitled to compensation. While many people assume the local government is responsible for the upkeep of public sidewalks, this is not always the case. Determining who is liable for your injuries can add complexity to the claims process, as can proving that the defect in the sidewalk caused your fall.
It may be beneficial to seek help from a Tampa cracked or defective or broken sidewalks lawyer to determine who is responsible for your accident and potentially help you recover compensation for damages such as medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses relating to your injuries.
If you or a loved one was hurt by falling or tripping on a broken or defective sidewalk, contact the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for a free case review at 1-800-747-3733 today to find out more about your legal options.
For a free legal consultation with a cracked or defective or broken sidewalks lawyer serving Tampa, call (800) 747-3733
Causes and Injuries from Unsafe Sidewalk Conditions
Unsafe sidewalk conditions can result in severe trip and fall injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord and back injuries, disfigurement, and fractures, to name a few. These injuries often leave victims in pain, unable to work, and facing financial pressure from rising medical bills.
According to the U.S. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), sidewalks must be designed to safely accommodate everyone’s needs. Defects can increase the risk to people who use wheelchairs or other assistive walking devices, cyclists, children using skates, and pedestrians. Examples of sidewalk deficiencies may include:
- Uneven slabs or transitions between gutters and curb ramps
- Tree roots pushing up from beneath the sidewalk
- Subsided slabs
- Chips, holes, or gaps
- Loose slabs
- Cracked slabs
- Obstructed sidewalks
- Sidewalks with improper water drainage
Tampa Cracked or Defective or Broken Sidewalks Lawyer Near Me (800) 747-3733
Proving Injuries from a Broken Sidewalk Can Be Challenging
The first challenge when recovering compensation is determining who is liable for your injuries. Injuries caused by an unsafe sidewalk may be covered by the liability insurance of a local government, business, or property owner. Once we have determined who is responsible for your accident, we can begin to gather the evidence necessary to prove liability, which involves the following elements:
- The responsible party knew or should have known of the defect (hazard) on the sidewalk
- The responsible party failed to correct the hazard
- The hazard was the direct cause of the trip and fall accident
- You suffered damages as a result of the accident
After the negligent parties have been identified and found liable, they are responsible for paying damages to the victim for all the medical and rehabilitative treatment necessary for recovery, along with any other expenses relating to the accident.
Claiming Compensation After an Injury Caused By a Defective Sidewalk
The responsive team at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine works hard to seek the best outcome for your claim by helping you prove liability and seeking compensation for all damages, such as:
- Current and ongoing medical expenses
- Lost wages and any reduced future earning capacity
- Disability and disfigurement
- Pain and suffering
- Other economic and non-economic losses related to your accident
Evidence to Help Your Claim
After tripping on a cracked or defective sidewalk, there are several things you can do that could benefit your chances of making a successful compensation claim. First and foremost should be your health. Seek medical attention if you are injured.
Once the accident is reported, the local government or property owner may quickly repair the defect. It is essential to take photographs of the defective or broken sidewalk from different angles as soon as possible after the accident to make sure evidence is not lost.
- Use a ruler, coin, or other common objects in the photo to illustrate the depth or height of the flaw
- Take photos of the surrounding area to demonstrate the physical location of the defective sidewalk
- Gather contact information from any witnesses to the accident
Your Tampa cracked or defective or broken sidewalks lawyer may be able to use this vital evidence to build a robust case, along with medical records, employment records, witness statements, or in some cases, expert testimony. This may help demonstrate the full impact of the accident and how it has affected your life, finances, and ability to work.
It is crucial when estimating the value of a claim that not only your current financial needs are met, but also any that could arise in the future. This could include any accessibility adjustments that need to be made to your home, whether the accident has changed your work capacity, or any future medical and rehabilitative requirements you may have in the months or years ahead.
Florida Laws Can Affect Your Right to Claim Compensation
Depending on who is responsible for maintaining the sidewalk could affect the amount of time you have to file a compensation claim. Florida statutes of limitations for personal injury claims vary concerning who is responsible for the accident and the severity of injuries, per Florida Statute §95.11 and Florida Statute §768.28:
- Personal injury claims against a private business or property owner: 4 years
- Personal injury claims against a Florida government agency: 3 years
- Wrongful death claims: 2 years
To find out more about how we can help today, discuss your situation with a member of our team at 1-800-747-3733. We are on hand to answer your questions and help you decide the most suitable course of action for your compensation claim.
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Help from a Tampa Cracked or Defective or Broken Sidewalks Lawyer
Our team at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine understands how stressful it can be to suffer a trip and fall injury, and how it can affect your mobility, ability to work, and enjoyment of life. We want to help and work hard to seek the best outcome for our clients to receive the compensation they deserve. For more information about our services, call for a free case review today at 1-800-747-3733.