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When you are injured in a slip-and-fall accident or incident that es caused by the negligence of someone or something else, you may be entitled to compensation for all costs and damages associated with your injuries. There are thousands of people each year who are injured because of an area of personal injury known as “slip and falls.” In fact, falls are the number one cause of traumatic brain injuries (TBI) in the United States.
If you or a loved one have been injured, We Win Injury Law can help. Our slip and fall attorneys have represented injured clients for over 20 years. We understand the law involved in slip and fall accidents and how to build strong cases for our clients. Call today for a free and confidential case evaluation.
Slip and Falls in Utah
Most injuries classified as slip and fall injuries occur when someone slips on a wet floor, they tumble down a defective staircase, or maybe they trip on uneven concrete in a parking lot. Whatever the reason is, when a visitor to another’s property slips and falls on someone else’s property and is injured, he or she may be able to bring a premises liability lawsuit against the property owner/entity to recover damages.
In Utah, whether the visitor can recover will depend on the visitor’s classification on the property and on whether the property owner/entity used reasonable care to prevent slips and falls on the property. For more information on Premises Liability and the separate classifications of visitors, see our article “What is Premises Liability.”
Generally, property owners/entities owe a legal duty to use reasonable care to maintain their property in a reasonably safe manner. This duty is usually owed to those on the property lawfully, such as customers, party guests, or others who have been invited. There is also a requirement for the property owner to regularly check their property for dangerous safety issues and for uneven surfaces. How often will depend on the property and what is objectively reasonable. For example, a grocery store will need to inspect its wet produce section more often than a homeowner. However, in many states, the duty does not extend to trespassers, although there are certain exceptions when the owner is aware of the trespassers, or it involves children or artificial conditions on the property.
It can be difficult to determine whether or not you can make a claim for a slip and fall without talking to witnesses or having video surveillance of your accident. After an injury, you should try to get the name and contact information of anyone who witnesses your slip and fall injury. This is one of the main reasons it is important to consult with an experienced slip and fall attorney as soon as possible because we have knowledge in what evidence to gather and can get it quickly. We also can hire private investigators to assist in gathering evidence from the store or take statements from witnesses who may have seen the injury as it occurred. We can also file a lawsuit and request certain documents directly from the owner/entity. For information on what can limit slip and fall cases, see our article on slip and falls.
Liability for Damages is Only Possible Through Proving Negligence
Being injured in a slip-and-fall accident does not always entitle you to compensation, the accident must have been caused by the negligence of another party. Negligence is a legal concept that is comprised of four separate parts: duty, breach, causation, and damages. For you to be entitled to compensation for your slip-and-fall accident, the party responsible must have had some duty to you like to warn you about the slippery condition, that duty must have been violated, and because of that your accident or incident occurred. If there are not damages associated with your injuries, there is nothing to recover through a slip-and-fall injury claim.
For example, if you are walking along your driveway and slip on a puddle of oil that you left there after fiddling with your car a week ago, you will not be entitled to compensation. However, if you are injured on a puddle at the mall, the facts and circumstances of the injury will be considered in terms of the legal concept of negligence. Did the mall have a duty to keep the floor safe, or to warn customers about a dangerous condition with signs? Did the mall breach this duty and leave a dangerous condition there that could harm someone? Did that breach of duty cause an accident? Were there injuries from that accident that resulted in damages? If the answer to each of these four questions is yes, then you have a claim for your injuries, and could be compensated through a successful claim.
The Claims Process
In an ideal world, you would be fully compensated for all short- and long-term costs and damages linked to your slip-and-fall injury automatically, and in short time after your injury. In reality, this is not the case.
To collect damages:
- you must prove your losses with evidence
- incorporate that evidence into a properly drafted claim
- submit that claim on time before it expires
- convince the insurance company to offer a fair settlement
- collect a fair settlement from the insurance company, or
- bring them to court to force them to fully compensate you
Collecting the full damages you are entitled to requires a comprehensive effort that is on time, in format, and convincing enough to get an insurance company to give you money that will cut directly into their profit margins. The best way to accomplish this is by working with a St. George slip-and-fall injury attorney. The dedicated personal injury attorneys from We Win Injury Law have decades of combined experience helping clients who have also been injured through slip-and-falls.
Common Slip-and-Fall Injuries
Slip-and-falls injuries lead to an impact on the ground, which can lead to a variety of injuries that result in damages you can recover compensation for, including:
- spinal cord injury – injuries to the spinal cord can lead to partial or complete paralysis and can impact the ability to control central bodily functions, leading to life-long medical costs, treatments, medication, and rehabilitation.
- traumatic brain injury – often referred to as TBI, when your body strikes the ground after a slip-and-fall, you can injure the soft tissue of your brain, leading to chemical changes that can forever change how you live, think, and work.
- broke and fractured bones – broken and fractured bones can lead to long-term pain, the necessity of surgeries and rehabilitation, as well as a variety of other medical interventions to correct.
When your injuries have long-term implications, your damages include not only the immediate symptoms of your injury but also the lasting impact. Any changes in your ability to enjoy life, participate in hobbies, and work should be covered in your compensation. Working with an experienced attorney with a network of local experts to generate evidence in support of your claim is essential to cover all damages linked to your slip-and-fall injury.
Do Not Accept a Settlement Offer without Speaking with an Attorney
The insurance company is a for-profit organization, and like any for-profit company, they seek to minimize its costs. The main costs to an insurance company are the settlements paid out to injured persons like you, and the cost of their employees’ time in getting claims denied, negotiated, or paid out. The insurance company will do whatever possible to deny your claim by challenging the evidence or contents of your claim, and if they do offer you a settlement, it is likely far less than what you deserve.
Insurance companies are notorious for offering quick settlements to injured persons that are easy to accept and process. These offers might contain not only the emergency room bills but some additional compensation that covers lost wages. You might think this is an attractive offer, and the insurance company will lead you to believe it is the best you’ll ever get. In reality, the settlement is meant to get you to accept less than what you deserve before you have time to fully calculate the full amount you are actually entitled to.
Call Today for a Free Consultation
Our promise to you is that we guarantee that you won’t pay us a dime until we settle your slip and fall accident case or receive a jury verdict. When we take slip-and-fall injury cases, we take them on contingency. This means that we only get paid if we win on your case, out of a portion of the earnings that we’ll agree upon before getting started.
Your initial consultation is cost-free and risk-free, and you’ll never pay anything out of pocket, ever. Our compensation comes out of the earnings we generate for you, usually a percentage that we’ll agree upon and include in our engagement agreement. Only once we have come to an agreement about how we will be compensated, and how you will be paid, does our work on your case begin. You have no worry of being obligated to pay anything, and you only stand to benefit by working with a St. George slip-and-fall accident.
If you or someone you care about has been seriously injured in an accident,
Contact us today for a free consultation