Everyone has tripped on a curb or slipped on the ice at some point in their life. Usually, we catch ourselves, get a little bit embarrassed, and keep going; however, sometimes a slip and fall can cause serious injuries that leave you in pain and require medical treatment.
If your fall occurred away from home – on public or private property – your injuries could be the result of negligence and the responsible party or parties should be held liable.
Slip and Fall Causes and Injuries
Many hazards can cause someone to slip, trip, fall, and become seriously injured. Common hazards include slippery surfaces, uneven ground or sidewalks, unsafe cables or wiring on the ground, and other dangerous items. Carpet that was improperly installed, tiles that are broken, or flooring with some other defect can also cause a person to trip and fall. Many slip and fall accidents occur on stairs, escalators, and ramps that are not properly maintained or are not up to code. There are specific regulations governing the maintenance of stairs, escalators, and ramps, including having appropriate lighting and handrails.
The severity of injuries from a fall varies depending on how hard and far the person fell. Many people receive minor cuts and bruises that do not require more than typical first aid. Cuts and scrapes can be more severe and require stitches. If a cut or scrape is not properly treated, an infection can occur. More serious slip and fall injuries can include broken bones, fractures, sprains, strains, dislocated joints, and ligament tears. Head injuries including concussions, bruising, bleeding, and traumatic brain injuries are also common for those who fall and hit their head on a hard surface. The severity of injuries resulting from a slip and fall or trip and fall also depends on how the person lands when falling. If the person lands on their spine, for example, their injuries may range from mild back pain to chronic back pain and lifelong paralysis.
What to Do if You Slip and Fall
If you slip and fall somewhere outside of your home, the first step to take is to seek medical attention. If you are seriously injured and can reach your phone, call 911. Many fall victims will get right back up and only feel slightly hurt at the time of the fall; however, you may have internal injuries that will not appear until the shock of the fall has worn off from. Within 24 – 48 hours after falling, you may start feeling more pain and stiffness as a result of the fall. This is incredibly common and the moment you start to feel pain you should seek medical treatment so the injury can be treated.
Immediately after a fall, if you are able to, take pictures of the area and the cause of your fall. If there are witnesses, get their contact information. If this occurs at a place of business, report the incident to the management and get a copy of any official report they make. If you are unable to do any of these things after your fall, have a family member or trusted friend help gather this information.
Depending on the severity of your accident, you may be looking at costly medical bills for current and ongoing treatment, lost wages, and the inability to care for yourself or others. You might think that nothing can be done to help you recover financially after a slip and fall. If you fell on private or government property, it may be the result of the property owner’s failure to provide a safe environment. Contacting an experienced slip and fall attorney will help you navigate the process of pursuing legal action against the party who has been negligent in the upkeep of their property. If their negligence caused your accident, we will fight to recover compensation for economic damages – including your bills and lost income – as well as non-economic damages like emotional trauma. In some slip and fall cases, we may be able to pursue punitive damages, which are intended to punish the party who caused your accident for their gross negligence or intentional wrongdoing. While rare in slip and fall cases, punitive damages can be pursued if the responsible party took steps to deceive or hurt the victim.
California Slip and Fall Lawyers
Curtis Legal Group is ready to fight for you and hold the people responsible for your slip and fall accountable for the resulting damages. We will meet with you to discuss what happened, collect evidence, and determine whose negligence caused your injuries. We will fight to get you maximum compensation for your injuries. Our team knows how to fight with corporations and insurance companies – we do it everyday. These entities do not have your best interests at heart and do not want to provide the full payment you truly deserve. If you were injured in a slip and fall accident due to the fault of a property owner, contact Curtis Legal Group today at 1-800-LAW-3080. We will take the burden of this accident off your shoulders so you can focus on a full recovery.