A Guide to Proving Fault in Slip and Fall Injury Cases
Slipping and falling on surfaces like the floor or stairs that are slick and risky results in thousands of injuries each year, numerous of them serious. While personal injury law provide for compensation to victims of slip and fall cases, it’s not usually straightforward to apportion fault on the part of a building owner. Here’s how a personal injury lawyer may attempt to show that a property owner is liable for injuries suffered in a slip and fall accident:
3 Conditions for Proving Fault
After you’re injured in a slip and fall accident on someone else’s building as a result of a dangerous situation, you may have a case in court if you can show the conditions below to be factual:
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1. Either the person owning the building or their employee should have acknowledged the hazardous condition that exposed the victim to slip and fall injury as a reasonable person in their capacity would have appreciated the situation and fixed it, averting the accident.
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2. Either the person owning the property or their staff did acknowledge the dangerous situation but did not resolve it.
3. Either the owner of the property or their staff did cause the hazardous condition that resulted in slip and fall injury to the complainant.
The Question of Reasonableness
While you’re on track to prove to court that a landlord is legally liable for the slip and fall injuries you suffered, you’ll at some point be required to show the reasonableness of the property owner’s actions or inaction. In an incidence where a leaking roof over a stairwell is the root cause of the accident, for instance, how long the problem has been there uncorrected can show how reasonable the accused is. When the defect has been unattended for the past four months, it is less sensible that the property owner allowed it to stay unrepaired than it would have been if it had occurred only the night before the accident and the owner could not have fixed it before it had stopped raining.
To make the case strongly against the owner of the property, it’s important you illustrate that they carried the legal responsibility of reasonable care to respond promptly and correct a hazardous scenario within their building. For instance, a building owner may not be logically responsible for a tenant tripping over a rake on a lawn as that’s somewhere you’d mostly expect the object to be.
It may be difficult to make the case for slip and fall injury compensation in court, but there are circumstances that can be proved with the assistance of a great lawyer to apportion fault to the property owner.