Burden of Proof in a Slip and Fall Injury Claim

By | October 27, 2016

If you have recently been injured in a slip and fall accident, you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim with the help of an experienced personal injury attorney. However, before doing this, you need to understand the implications of filing a claim.

An individual who believes that he or she has been injured because of someone else’s improper maintenance of a property has to demonstrate the severity of his or her injuries and link it to a poorly maintained property for which someone should have taken responsibility. You must be able to establish, for example, the property owner’s liability in the accident in order to be successful with slip and fall injury claims.

There are two critical questions associated with a slip and fall accident claim. The first is:

  • Which parties are potentially liable for the injuries?
  • Were those parties truly negligent?

One of the most common challenges for an individual who has suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident is that the other party may attempt to allege that the injured person’s own recklessness or carelessness somehow contributed to or caused the accident.

Slip & Fall Claims and Theories of Liability

In order to hold somebody else responsible for injuries sustained in a slip and fall accident, an injured person has to be able to prove one of the following:

  • That a property owner or the owner’s employee caused the dangerous condition and that it was reasonably foreseeable that someone could slip and fall or trip and fall due to that condition.
  • A property owner or their employees should have recognized that the dangerous existed and repaired it or removed the danger.

Proving that the Victim Did Not Cause the Accident Themselves

In slip and fall accidents the property owner could argue that the plaintiff is totally or partially responsible for the accident that led to injuries. Hiring an experienced slip and fall injury attorney is the best way to protect yourself against someone else’s aggressive defense that turns the tables around on you.

The key questions that any plaintiff should consider in a slip and fall personal injury claim include:

  • Was limited visibility or poor lighting an element causing the slip and fall injury?
  • Did the hazardous obstacle or condition exist long enough that a reasonable employee or property owner could have taken action to eradicate that hazard?
  • Was there any reasonable justification for the creation or existence of the potential hazard?
  • Did this justification still exist when the slip and fall injury happened?
    Could the hazardous condition or obstacle have been made less dangerous through preventative measures such as warning signs or relocating the hazard?
  • Did employees or the property owner have a regular routine of checking for possible hazards on the property and are there any records or logs that could show whether or not procedure was followed immediately after an accident occurred?

Although it can be frustrating to think that the other party might try to blame the accident on you, you should be prepared for what to expect when you file a slip and fall injury claim. A good lawyer can make a big difference in this situation.

One of the most important things you can do after suffering in a slip and fall accident is to consult with a slip and fall personal injury attorney. Many people are surprised of the extent to which a serious injury can impact their lives. Severe slip and fall accidents can lead to catastrophic injuries from which a victim may never fully recover. Far too many slip and fall injury claims could be prevented.

Even with good health insurance, the individual suffering in an accident like this may find it difficult to move on with his or her life, particularly if the accident was severe enough to mean that the individual is unable to return to work ever again or only able to hold down a limited job due to the physical ramifications of the accident. During this challenging time, you need someone on your side who is committed to the best possible outcome for you. Speaking with an Personal Injury Attorney is critical during this devastating time.

About The Author:

Frank Ashton has been a practicing attorney since 1986. For over 25 years, Frank has focused his practice on personal injury, medical malpractice, nursing home negligence, products liability, social security disability, as well as auto and trucking accidents. For the past several years, Frank has been included in the list of the Best Lawyers in America.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *