Slip & Fall
Property owners have a duty to make sure their premises are free of dangerous conditions. A slip and fall accident occurs when someone is injured after slipping or tripping and falling on another person's property. Such cases are generally classified as premises liability cases. Under premises liability law the owner of a property has the duty to keep his or her property safe and free from hazards. Examples of slip and fall hazards include a wet floor, an improperly waxed floor, or icy sidewalks. Victims of slip and fall accidents sometimes suffer injuries that are quite serious such as a spinal cord injury, broken bones, paralysis, a head injury or a brain injury. Such injuries require extensive treatment and long recovery times. In the same way that a victim of a car accident may seek damages from the person who caused the accident by filling a New York personal injury claim, New York law allows victims of slip and fall accidents to seek damages as well. Because of the complexity of such cases it is important to consult with an experienced Bronx Slip and Fall Injury Lawyer before making decisions about your legal options. In addition, if during the course of the treatment for your injuries the medical staff commits medical malpractice, the party responsible for your slip and fall injuries may be required to compensate you for that as well.Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents
A slip and fall accident occurs where a pedestrian loses his or her footing and falls. This can be due to a loss of balance, because the pedestrian slipped on a wet or slick surface, or tripped on an obstruction. Common causes of slip and fall accidents include:
- Water left on the floors
- Broken stairs or hand rails
- Broken or cracked concrete
- Icy sidewalks
- Poorly lit sidewalks, staircases or garages.
Owners of businesses, such as banks and restaurants, and private homeowners all have the duty to ensure that their premises are safe for those who enter. The level of duty owed depends on the classification of the person entering the premises. There are three categories, an invitee, a licensee and a trespasser. An invitee is a person that enters a property by invitation. A licensee enters a premises with permission for a benefit or purpose. A trespasser is a person who enters property without permission.
How a person is classified determines the duty of care a premises owner has. A landlord is required to take reasonable care in ensuring that a property is safe, and must warn an invitee of any dangerous condition. If the premises is a place of business, the landlord is required to inspect the premises for any potential danger. While the responsibilities are slightly different for each classification, in all instances the landlord has the duty to ensure the safety of someone who enters the property.Pursuing a Claim
Depending on the facts of your case, if you are hurt in a slip and fall accident because of an unsafe condition on the property, you may be entitled a number of types of compensation.
- Medical Bills: A fall can lead to serious injuries such as head, back, or neck injury. The medical bills associated with such an accident can be substantial-- often beyond what medical insurance will cover. Through a personal injury claim you may be able to recover expenses for medical treatment, your hospital stay, prescriptions, rehabilitation and visits to your doctors.
- Loss of Income: If your injury is serious you may not be able to return to work for days, weeks, or even months. You will be entitled to recover compensation for the income you lost while recovering from your injuries.
- Pain and Suffering: You may also be able to recover compensation for the pain and suffering that you suffered as a result of the accident. Pain and suffering refers to not only physical pain, but also for emotional pain and loss of enjoyment of life. Whether you will be entitled to receive pain and suffering damages and the amount of such damages depends on the severity of your injuries.
To ensure you have the best chance of success in your slip and fall lawsuit, make sure that you document everything that you remember about the circumstances that lead to your fall. Consult a doctor immediately. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney. The staff at Stephen Bilkis and Associates, PLLC is experienced in handling personal injury and wrongful death cases stemming from slip and fall accidents. Contact us at 1.800.NY.NY.LAW (1.800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.