HAVE YOU SUFFERED FROM A SLIP AND FALL INJURY IN SOUTH FLORIDA?
Slip and fall injuries are an all too common occurrence in Florida. Frequent wet weather conditions create hazardous sidewalks, stairways, wet floors or parking lots, and other dangerous areas. Businesses (shopping malls, plazas, cities, hotels, restaurants, supermarkets, etc…) know this and have a responsibility to you to maintain their premises in a reasonably safe condition. When the fail to do so, injuries are inevitable. Slip-and-fall injuries can cause torn ligaments, hip and bone fractures, and even head trauma, leading to long-term pain and suffering, as well as loss of income and overall quality of life. If you have been injured in a slip or fall, you need the best possible legal team working to ensure fair compensation.
The term “slip and fall” is often associated with a minor accident or injury. However, in some cases, a slip or fall can result in severe harm to a victim, including traumatic brain injuries and even death. Victims of slip and fall cases could find themselves in a state of mental anguish trying to keep up with medical bills and figuring out how to compensate for lost wages, not to mention the possibility of long-term suffering and diminished overall quality of life.
If you’ve been in a slip and fall accident, it’s essential to find an experienced Miami slip and fall lawyer who can represent you in order to not only ensure fair compensation for the injuries suffered, but also to hold the liable parties responsible for their negligence. At Neufeld, Kleinberg & Pinkiert, PA, we are dedicated to helping you seek justice for your injuries. Call us today to speak to an attorney about developing a plan of action.
WHAT TYPES OF ACCIDENTS ARE CONSIDERED SLIP AND FALL?
There are a variety of ways in which someone could slip and fall on another person’s property and injure themselves. However, there are specific circumstances that must be met in order for the accident to be
considered negligence on the part of the property owner. So, what exactly is considered a slip and fall accident? Let’s take a look.
Generally, a slip and fall accident can happen any time a victim loses their footing, falls, and is injured on another person’s property. This might include a fall caused by an object in the way or an uneven surface, a fall caused by a hole or low spot in a path, or a fall caused because of an object or slippery surface.
While people are injured by falling every day, only some injuries are at the fault of another. Under Florida’s premises liability law, a property owner must keep their property in a reasonably safe condition for guests and customers.
Common slip and fall accident types in Miami could be caused by any of the following:
- Poor lighting
- Holes in the ground
- Uneven flooring
- Cluttered hallways and aisles
- Ladders and scaffolding in the way
- Faulty stairs
- Damaged staircases or ramps
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WHAT TO DO AFTER A SLIP AND FALL?
- Call an ambulance if in significant pain. At the very least see your doctor as soon as possible (the longer you wait to seek medical attention, the worse it is for your potential slip and fall case);
- If you are able to while waiting for an ambulance, insist on filing an incident report;
- Obtain the names of any staff or management you speak with;
- If possible, note the name and phone number of any witnesses to the slip and fall;
- Do not sign anything;
- Do not speak to an insurance adjuster after the accident until you have spoken to a slip and fall lawyer first; Your slip and fall lawyer will review with you how best to answer common questions asked by insurance companies.
- Save your shoes and clothing;
- Take all the pictures you can (of your injuries, of the area where you slipped and fell, of the area surrounding where you slipped and fell, of your clothing and any wetness or foreign substances that might have caused your slip and fall)
The slip-and-fall accident attorneys at Neufeld, Kleinberg & Pinkiert, PA, have the experience it takes, a team of experts readily available (building code experts, coefficient of friction engineers, investigators, etc…) and a long track record of success in obtaining judgments for our slip and fall clients. Call today for your free consultation and find out how we can help. Remember that the business owner, generally through their insurance company will immediately begin to take steps to protect their interests (which are primarily focused on paying you as little money as possible). This is why it is absolutely essential to call and begin working with a slip and fall lawyer immediately. Witness’s memories, video footage are less likely to be available the longer you wait to speak with a slip and fall attorney.
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HOW DO YOU DETERMINE WHO IS LIABLE DURING A FLORIDA SLIP AND FALL CASE?
If you have been injured as a result of a slip and fall accident, one of the most important things you can do is contact an experienced attorney who can help you with your claim. In order to prove fault and liability in this type of case, there are several things a victim must prove. First, they need to show that the property owner did not maintain their property with reasonable care and that the owner knew, or should have known, that there was a dangerous condition on their property. Second, they must prove that the property owner was acting negligently and that, because of their negligence, there was harm done to the victim.
If the owner or manager knows or should know that a portion of the property is unsafe, the issue must be addressed as quickly as possible. If the problem isn’t taken care of and someone falls and is injured as a result, the owner or the manager of the property may be responsible. This is referred to as negligence—giving the injured person grounds for legal action.
WHAT DOES NEGLIGENCE MEAN?
Negligence plays the most important part in a slip and fall case. If you cannot prove that a property owner was negligent, your chance for an actual case drops significantly. But in order to prove someone was negligent, certain elements must be present.
The elements of negligence include:
- The property owner owed a duty of care to the injured person.
- The property owner breached that duty of care.
- The breach of care is what caused the accident.
- The victim sustained injuries from the accident.
Let’s put this into context. A restaurant owner owes a duty of care to each guest that comes to dine on their premises. If there has been a spill on the floor that the owner knows about, but doesn’t actively attend to it to ensure the safety of their customers, they are breaching their duty of care. If someone were to slip and fall, injuring themselves, the restaurant owner could be found negligent in court.
In order to succeed in a case involving negligence, the victim must prove that the property owner ought to have known and is assumed to have known about the hazardous condition that caused the victim’s injuries. This can be proven through circumstantial evidence, such as the length of time the unsafe condition was in existence, showing that the owner would have discovered it if he or she exercised reasonable care, or the regularity of the dangerous condition, so its presence was foreseeable.
Proving negligence can be complicated, but with the right attorney, you’ll be in good hands. The Miami slip and fall lawyers at Neufeld, Kleinberg & Pinkiert, PA, we are prepared to do more than just support you—we will fight to get you fair compensation for your injuries, loss of income, and more.
DO I NEED A LAWYER FOR A SLIP AND FALL?
If you want to file a claim and receive the maximum amount of compensation possible, the answer is yes, you do need a reputable lawyer to help you with your case. An experienced slip and fall accident lawyer thoroughly understands the Florida slip and fall laws that may affect your unique situation. This includes Florida’s pure comparative negligence law, which could potentially impact the amount of damages awarded in your case.
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE SETTLEMENT AMOUNT FOR A MIAMI SLIP AND FALL CASE?
The settlement amount that can be awarded for a slip and fall case in Florida can vary greatly. Unfortunately, sometimes a court will find that the victim is partially at fault for the incident. This qualification could include the victim being on part of the property where visitors aren’t typically allowed, being distracted by using your cellphone while walking, or failing to notice that the dangerous condition was clearly marked or corded off. Essentially, if reasonable steps were taken to protect visitors from being harmed or the victim was in some way responsible for their own injuries, the settlement amount may be significantly affected.
In this type of claim, Florida follows the pure comparative negligence rule. This means that the damages a victim will recover in a personal injury case will be reduced by the percentage he or she was at fault. For example, if the victim recovers $10,000 and is found to be 25% at fault, they will ultimately receive only $7,500 due to their part in causing the accident.
WHAT IS THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS ON A FLORIDA SLIP AND FALL CASE?
If you are a victim of a slip and fall case, it is crucial to act quickly so as to not miss the time limit for filing your claim. In Florida, the statute of limitations is four years from the date of the injury. After this time passes, you will not be able to file a claim.
SLIP AND FALL PREMISES LIABILITY ATTORNEY
It is not uncommon for the phrase slip-and-fall or slip and fall lawyer to conjure negative imagery. Many people equate a slip-and-fall to someone attempting to cash in on perceived or created danger. In truth, these types of cases can be challenging, however, our law firm has the experience necessary to carefully evaluate a case and properly advise individuals at the initial consultation stage. The truth is, we will not accept just any slip and fall injury case. Only if we believe that we can prove that the store owner knew or should have known that a dangerous condition existed, had the opportunity to fix the problem, and failed to do so will we consider accepting the case.