Each year, more than one in four older adults will fall. Among older Americans, falls are the leading cause of injuries and death from injury. Falls can result in broken bones, fractures, and traumatic brain injuries. While there are some individual risk factors for slips and falls, most of these accidents are preventable and stem from negligence. In these situations, victims should consult with an experienced Kentucky personal injury lawyer to file a slip-and-fall lawsuit.
What Is a Slip-and-Fall Accident?
“Slip and fall” refers to personal injury claims that stem from incidents where a person slips and suffers injuries on someone else’s property. These lawsuits fall under the broader category of “premises liability” claims. Slips and falls tend to occur on property that another person or entity owns or maintains.
Dangerous conditions such as slippery walkways, broken steps, inadequate lighting, narrow stairwells, or wet surfaces can cause someone to slip and suffer injuries. The person bringing the claim must establish that the responsible entity owed them a duty, breached that duty, and the breach resulted in the victim’s injuries and subsequent damages.
Steps to Take After a Slip-and-Fall Accident
Slip-and-fall accidents can be devastating, as these incidents are one of the primary sources of injury and death among older Americans. Many slip-and-fall victims require significant medical treatment and experience long-term pain and discomfort. In addition, there are many collateral damages after a slip-and-fall accident.
If you are the victim, collecting damages against the negligent party is crucial to ensuring that you are not burdened with hefty costs after the accident. A Kentucky slip-and-fall attorney can help you take steps to protect your financial standing and recover compensation from the liable party.
Every slip and fall is unique, but let’s look at some general steps to take after an accident.
Report the Accident to the Property Owner
After a slip and fall, you need to report the incident to the property owner or another responsible person connected to the property. For example, if the incident occurred at a retail establishment, you should report the incident to the highest-ranking manager or supervisor on duty. Similarly, if the incident happened at a public park, you should contact the township, city, or other municipality responsible for maintaining the premises.
In some instances, you might be unable to report the incident immediately. While failing to report the incident immediately does not bar recovery, it does present particular challenges. It is essential to report the incident as soon as possible.
Gather Information About the Fall
While filing a lawsuit for slip-and-fall injuries may not be the first thing on your mind after getting hurt, you must try and take note of the circumstances of the fall. This information will be helpful for medical treatment and any subsequent legal claim or settlement. Some useful information you should note after a fall includes the following:
- The time of the fall,
- The conditions surrounding the fall,
- The type of footwear they were wearing, and
- Whether there were any witnesses to the fall.
More specifically, you should get the identifying information for any witnesses and take photos if possible. The circumstances surrounding the fall are essential evidence and crucial to secure total compensation.
Get Medical Treatment
Getting prompt medical treatment is important for your long-term health and the ability to collect compensation. Like any personal injury claim, medical documentation holds significant evidentiary weight. In some cases, the full extent of your injuries and pain will not manifest until some time after the incident. Thus, even when you do not believe you experienced severe injuries, it is best to err on the side of caution and receive treatment from a physician. Similarly, continuing the course of treatment and attending all medical appointments is essential to building a viable case for compensation.
Contact a Kentucky Slip-and-Fall Attorney
Contacting an experienced Kentucky premises liability lawyer is one of the most important steps you can take after a fall. An attorney can provide sound legal advice and take steps to pursue a claim for compensation. Further, you should not speak with an insurance adjustor or the at-fault party’s attorney without retaining a lawyer. The at-fault person or company could use the information you provide to avoid paying out a settlement.
Do I Need a Slip-and-Fall Attorney?
Filing a slip-and-fall claim hinges largely on the relevant evidence you can present. Additionally, filing a lawsuit for slip and fall requires a comprehensive understanding of complex substantive and evidentiary laws. An experienced attorney is invaluable in these cases. Slip-and-fall victims should consult an attorney to determine the best path to financial recovery. Some steps that premises liability attorneys take in slip-and-fall claims include:
- Investigating the accident,
- Determining damages and sending demand letters,
- Engaging in settlement negotiations,
- Filing a lawsuit,
- Building and examining discovery, and
- Going to trial.
In addition, an attorney can ensure that the claims meet the state’s statute of limitations, filing requirements, and other procedural prerequisites.
Have You Suffered Serious Injuries After a Fall on Another’s Property or Business?
If you were recently injured in a slip-and-fall accident, it’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed. At the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, we understand your frustration. Between the medical expenses, missed work, changes to your everyday life, and lingering pain, it can seem like life will never get back to “normal.” However, we are here to help. At the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, we have a long history of standing alongside slip-and-fall victims like you. We know how to help connect you with compensation for your physical and emotional injuries. We can help you understand how to file a slip-and-fall claim in Kentucky effectively. To learn more and to schedule a free consultation with the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, give us a call at 502-791-9000 or connect with us through our online contact form.