Have you ever experienced a slip and fall situation in a store or business? Were you browsing the aisles considering which breakfast cereal to purchase and suddenly find yourself losing your balance and landing on a wet floor? Clearly an employee had been mopping up a spill, but the employee and a warning “wet floor” sign are absent from the scene. You could have a case to sue for financial compensation for your injuries. There are steps you need to take to follow through with this decision to pursue a case:
- You should immediately contact the store owner or manager of the property of your accident and explain the circumstances revolving around the occurrence. Document their responses and have them sign the documentation if they are willing. Some stores will actually have you fill out their own incident reports.
- Visit your doctor for an exam and take a copy of the results. This will become your evidence that an injury occurred and that you have a basis to claim compensation. It is extremely crucial to document the injuries from the fall!
- Make sure to gather all relevant evidence including contacting any witnesses that saw you fall and ask for their account. Take photos of the location and the hazard that caused the accident. There is no such thing as too much evidence, all of it can only strengthen your case
After you collect the necessary components of evidence, you must be able to prove that the accident occurred due to negligence and prove that the establishment is liable for your injuries.
How to Determine Negligence
You must be able to prove the business acted negligently and you were injured as a result. This is the first aspect of your case that must be considered before moving further. Per the above example, there are a few questions to determine whether or not the store was negligent.
- Why was the floor slippery?
- Was a wet floor sign or other indicator present when you fell? (This is where location photographs are important!)
- Was an employee aware that the floor was slippery before you were injured?
Finding out the exact answers to the questions above can help you determine exactly what happened and why it happened which can point to liability for the fall. The store owner can be deemed liable if negligence is determined–like not having a sign for a wet floor that has just been mopped! However, if the wet floor is due to something like a leaky ceiling or pipe, it may be negligence on the part of the landlord or property manager.
Get a Lawyer
You don’t have to do all of this alone! Hiring a personal injury lawyer such as the personal injury lawyer Chicago IL locals trust is your final step after completing the steps above. With a significant amount of evidence, you could succeed in being compensated for your accident. This is possibly the most important step on your way to recovery, so do not hesitate to contact an experienced attorney to guide you through a slip and fall lawsuit.
Thanks to authors at Konrad Sherinian LLP for their insight Personal Injury Law.