Slip and fall injuries are usually relatively minor, but occasionally this type of accident leaves you with broken bones, torn ligaments or tendons, head injuries, or even spinal cord injuries. If you suffered serious injuries in a Miami fall that occurred after a property owner or manager ignored a hazard, you have the right to file for compensation to pay your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
To learn more about your legal options, speak to the slip and fall lawyers in Miami at the Law Firm of Anidjar & Levine today. We offer free case evaluations and can help you understand the options available to you. Call 800-747-3733 for more information.
What role does negligence play in a slip and fall injury case?
To file a successful slip and fall claim, we need to prove the property owner or occupier is the liable party and acted negligently, causing your injuries. All slip and fall cases rely on proving negligence to win the compensation you deserve.
Demonstrating negligence requires us to collect evidence to prove several details about the property owner in your case.
They had a responsibility to protect you.
In a slip and fall case, this usually requires proving you did not trespass on the property.
They failed in their responsibility.
We can use eyewitness testimony, surveillance video, and other evidence to show the property owner knew about the hazard—or should have known about the hazard—but failed to repair it or warn you of it.
Their action or inaction caused your injuries.
We use eyewitness testimony, your medical records, testimony from accident experts, and other evidence to show your injuries occurred because of the fall. This is why it is so important to get medical care immediately.
You suffered physical, emotional, and/or financial damages.
We need to prove the full amount of your accident-related losses and expenses in order to collect the maximum compensation you deserve. To do this, we use copies of your medical bills, proof of lost wages from your employer, and receipts from costs you covered out-of-pocket.
How does negligence cause slip and fall injuries?
Negligence on the part of the property owner or occupier can cause a slip and fall injury in a number of ways. Some of the most common we see in our practice include:
- Spills, tracked liquids, or leaks that cause slick floors;
- Cracks in sidewalks, rolled rugs, torn carpet, and other uneven surfaces;
- Steps, curbs, and other obstacles that lack proper warning;
- Extension cords and other trip hazards in a walkway;
- Stairs without handrails or with faulty railings; and
- Problems stemming from improper maintenance, such as potholes and broken tiles.
Since most of these hazards occur because of poor maintenance, the liable party is typically the person or company in charge of maintaining the area where your fall occurred. This is usually the property owner, unless a business or other occupier leases the property and handles the maintenance. We can help you identify the liable party based on the facts of your case and pursue compensation through their insurance company.
Is the property owner or occupier liable for my injuries?
Florida has premises liability laws in place stating that owners and occupiers have to keep their property safe and free of hazards to protect the health and wellbeing of visitors. If a situation occurs that poses an obvious hazard, the property owner or manager must take action to repair it or warn visitors of it as soon as possible.
The standard used in these cases is sometimes called the “reasonable person standard,” because it considers whether a reasonable person would have recognized the hazard and taken action. If the property owner or occupier did not take action when a reasonable person would, they are liable for any injuries that occurred. This is true even if they failed to notice the hazard but a reasonable person in their position would have noticed it.
These statutes only protect you if the property owner invited you onto the property or if you are a licensee. This covers most of the reasons you might be on someone else’s property—such as for shopping, dining, working, or visiting—except illegal trespass. Property owners do not have a responsibility to protect trespassers from slip and fall hazards.
In some cases, your own behavior may reduce or eliminate your chances at recovering compensation. Disobeying clearly posted rules, being drunk or under the influence of drugs, and not exercising due care might all be reasons that you share in the fault after a fall.
For example, imagine you fell on the deck of a pool. There was standing water, but you were running and engaging in horseplay. The court might find that you were 40% at fault in your fall because you disobeyed the posted rules. This means you can only collect 60% of your total damages from the property owner.
Do I need a Miami slip and fall injury attorney to file my claim?
There is no reason to face this process alone. You will need to research the law and examine other similar cases to learn how to file an injury claim. If you give us a call, we have the experience necessary to help you collect the evidence you need and the resources to call on experts to bolster your case.
Many insurance companies and their policyholders tend to shrug off slip and fall injury claims, assuming your damages were minor and you are trying to score an easy payout. We understand this is not the case and will make sure they take your claim seriously. In some cases, we can even recover evidence you would not be able to obtain on your own, including surveillance video of the incident, maintenance records from the company, and other important documentation.
We are also well-trained negotiators. We will fight aggressively for the maximum amount of compensation possible in your case. We ensure your rights remain protected throughout this process and prevent you from settling for less than your claim is worth. Of course, on the rare occasion we cannot reach a fair settlement amount with the insurer, we can also pursue other legal options for compensation.
Our attorneys can help you get the compensation you need to recover from your slip and fall injury.
At the Law Firm of Anidjar & Levine, we can help you understand your right to fair compensation under Florida premises liability and negligence laws. We can work with you to push your case through the claims process until you recover the compensation you deserve. Call us today at 800-747-3733 to schedule your complimentary consultation and case analysis with a Miami personal injury attorney.