Whether it occurs at a friend’s house or the grocery store, slip and fall accidents take place rather often. In a few cases, the owner of the property is liable for the injuries of the injured party, and in other instances, the property owner won’t be held legally responsible. Now let us explore the various aspects of slip and fall accidents by reviewing What You Must Prove to Win a Slip and Fall Injury Claim by All Law.
“Theories of Liability in Slip and Fall Claims
In order to hold another party responsible for injuries suffered in a slip and fall accident, an injured person must typically prove one of the following:
A property owner (or their employee) should have recognized a dangerous condition (i.e. a pothole or an uneven walking surface) and removed or repaired the potential danger, but did not. The key question here is whether a reasonable person would have identified the condition as hazardous, and whether the defendant had ample opportunity to remedy the situation before the accident occurred. OR
A property owner (or their employee) actually caused the dangerous condition leading to the slip and fall accident — by leaving a hazardous obstacle in a walking path, for example — and it was reasonably foreseeable that someone would trip and fall due to the condition.”
How Much is A Slip and Fall Claim Worth?
The bills for past, present, and future treatment related to the fall will be the main measuring stick in calculating the injury damages you sustained. Depending on your location, the amount utilized to calculate the damages could be the amount that the health care provider charged or the amount the provider chose to receive as full payment. Very frequently, healthcare providers choose to accept below the charged amount; thus it’s important to understand the law in your jurisdiction.
Usually, a legal slip and fall case is at least worth the medical bills’ cost. So perhaps, you can safely assume that you’re entitled to receive at least such amount. Additionally, on the other hand, you may be eligible to recover what’s called as the “pain and suffering.”
Pain and Suffering
Perhaps, this can be the least expected section of damages, when it comes to what its value could be. There are no clear rules for computing the pain and suffering a person endures; but, the amount of the medical expenses is typically what’s utilized as the basis.
Depending on the permanence and severity of the injuries, the lawyers or insurance adjusters assessing the claim usually determine a proper multiplier to utilize, together with the medical bill charge, to calculate the sum of the pain and suffering you’re entitled. For instance, if you fell or slipped a flight of stairs, fractured a couple of bones, and will have an injury that affects your walk for the remainder of your life, the pain and suffering’s value may be five-fold the cost of the medical bills. On the other hand, if you slid on floor wax at a store, injured your wrists, and completely recovered in a just month; the pain and suffering value may just be 0.5 times the cost of the medical bills.
It’s crucial to note that a few injuries don’t show up following the slip and fall. Because of this, it’s wise to discuss the amount of the claim with imminent injuries in mind.
To help you with your slip and fall accident, here is FindLaw’s Proving Fault in Slip and Fall Accidents, which talks about a few things that you or your lawyer will want to talk about before starting a lawsuit:
“How long had the defect been present before your accident? In other words, if the leaking roof over the stairwell had been leaking for the past three months, then it was less reasonable for the owner to allow the leak to continue than if the leak had just started the night before and the landlord was only waiting for the rain to stop in order to fix it.
What kinds of daily cleaning activities does the property owner engage in? If the property owner claims that he or she inspects the property daily, what kind of proof can he or she show to support this claim?
If your slip and fall accident involved tripping over something that was left on the floor or in another plce where you tripped on it, was there a legitimate reason for that object to be there?”
Loss of Earning Capacity
If you sustained severe injuries that you aren’t capable of accomplishing the kind of work you did before getting injured—and you aren’t capable of earning money as much as you used to– then you can recover an amount that’s intended to repay you for lost earning capacity. A professional (usually a vocational rehabilitation specialist) would provide testimony in order to support the claim, following a full assessment of the injuries, the occupation, and the prospects for work in the future.
If you effectively established that your earning capacity had been reduced because of your injuries, the owner of the property may pay you for such loss a few various ways, including:
- paying your education or training in another field
- providing you with a lump sum payment for the amount of your diminished earning capacity
If you missed or temporarily left work due to your injuries, you’re probably eligible to receive the value of the income you would’ve earned. You’ll need to validate the amount you make as well as the time off work you missed, typically with a pay stub or tax return. Your employer will possibly need to confirm, in writing, the period you missed because of your injury, as well as your usual income rate.
And in Nolo’s How Much is Your Slip and Fall Claim Worth?, it talks about the variables that’ll provide you with a decent idea of your claim’s value. Here’s an excerpt:
“Medical Bills — Present and Future
Your bills for past and future medical treatment related to your fall will be one of the main measuring sticks in calculating your injury damages. Depending on where you live, the amount used to calculate your damages may be the amount the healthcare provider billed, or the amount the healthcare provider agreed to receive as payment in full.
Pain and Suffering in a Slip and Fall Claim
Pain and suffering may be the least predictable component of damages, in terms of what its value might be. There are no hard-and-fast rules for calculating pain and suffering; however, the amount of your medical bills is typically what is used as the starting point.”