Life can change in an instant. One minute, you were walking along in good health. Then, something happened and your feet shot out from under you. Suddenly, life was full of pain and complications that didn’t exist before the fall. It’s bad enough you experienced a slip and fall accident. What makes it worse is when it could have been prevented.
The World Health Organization says 37.3 million falls severe enough to require medical attention happen every year. If someone else’s negligence caused your slip and fall accident, you deserve compensation for what you’re going through. In order to prove the property owner was at fault and recover medical expenses, lost wages or pain and suffering compensation, here’s what you need to do.
Get Medical Treatment
Seek medical attention immediately after a slip and fall accident. Even if you think your injuries are minor, don’t wait.
The most important reason is you could be hurt worse than you think. A delay might cause your injury to get worse and your recovery time to lengthen. Also, if you do need to file a personal injury claim for a slip and fall accident, whether or not you saw a doctor becomes critically important. If you waited days after the accident before you called for an appointment, the defense can argue you weren’t actually hurt.
When you see a healthcare professional, he or she can evaluate your injury and start treatment. The clinic or practice can also provide you with documentation of your injuries and record the fact that your slip and fall accident caused them.
Report Your Slip and Fall Accident
The property owner or manager might not realize what happened to you. If the slip and fall accident happened at a store, in a parking lot or in a neighbor’s yard, report what happened to the owner or person in charge. Ask the landlord or manager to complete a written report and obtain a copy for your records.
Stick to the facts when you make your statement or fill out your report. Don’t make accusations, just outline what occurred and the personal injury your slip and fall accident caused.
If you’re able, return to the scene and gather documentation. Look around to see if you can identify factors that contributed to your fall. When you find them, take photos. A few common causes include:
- Wet floors
- Uneven pavement
- Loose flooring or carpeting
- Poorly placed displays
- Food spills
- Dim lighting
If you can identify what caused your fall, often you can work backward to figure out what someone could have done to prevent it.
Identify witnesses and get contact information for anyone who might have seen what happened. Get their name, address and phone number so you can get in touch with them later. Also, get contact information for people who interacted with you after your slip and fall accident. Even if they didn’t see what happened, they can describe the conditions of the scene and the pain you experienced after.
You’ll also need to keep copies of medical reports and doctor bills.
Guard Your Communication
Business representatives or insurance companies might contact you soon after the accident. Don’t settle until you’ve had time to evaluate your condition and seek legal advice. Keep any conversations factual. Don’t try to convince them they’re at fault, and don’t get into a discussion about anything you might have done.
Also, refrain from posting on social media. Don’t talk about your injury, how it happened, who might be at fault or compensation you might receive. In doing so you might damage your claim.
Get a Free Consultation
Schedule a free consultation with a slip and fall accident attorney at Monsour Law Firm. We can help you figure out if you have a case, who is responsible, what evidence you need and what a slip and fall accident like yours might be worth. The consultation is completely free, and if you don’t receive a settlement, you also never receive a bill from us.