In the United States alone, almost one million people visit emergency rooms annually due to slip-and-fall accidents. Still, many slip-and-fall victims shrug off the incident, not realizing that they can sue the property owner for personal injury if the property owner was negligent and/or at-fault. Though most people do not pursue this course of action when experiencing a fall on a friend’s personal property, it is important to know that many of these types of accidents occur in businesses and public premises, meaning the property owner may be responsible if the property owner was negligent and/or at-fault.
Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions about slip-and-fall accidents. Many times, people blame themselves for the fall or shrug it off due to being only minorly injured. Others simply feel like they aren’t the type to sue for such an accident or feel like it is a waste of time. These are common beliefs that can hinder your ability to make the legal decision that is right for you. Below are 3 tips to keep in mind and consider if you are involved in a slip-and-fall situation.
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Personal Injury Lawsuit Timeline
If you are injured on the property of a business, make sure that the incident is documented immediately at that time by the business. A business incident report will have the facts of loss, what happened, and possibly any witnesses or employees that may support and best document evidence of the event and your injuries.
Though it is of course always best to contact your lawyer sooner rather than later, many don’t know that in Arizona, you generally only have two years from the date of injury to file a case in court. Once you report the injury to your lawyer, they can begin gathering evidence to ensure that your case is filed in court within the two-year (Arizona Bodily Injury Statute of Limitation) timeframe. The belief that you cannot file a claim if your personal injury happened a few weeks or months ago is a common misconception with these types of lawsuits.
That is why it is so important to make sure that if you are injured on a business property, that you put the owner on notice and make sure a business incident report is generated by the business. Don’t be discouraged from taking legal action and knowing your rights and responsibilities, sooner rather than later.
If you are injured in any way, it is important to make sure the property owner documents the incident. The biggest myth regarding these types of cases is that you are solely responsible for your own injuries. If the property owner was negligent in causing your injuries – and the incident is well documented – they may be responsible for financially compensating you.
Know Your Worth!
Persons injured through no fault of their own may find themselves in a situation where they need financial assistance for their injuries right away. Though it seems logical to get your compensation sooner rather than later, waiting can actually be beneficial in terms of how much compensation you receive. This is an important reason you should always speak with your lawyer ahead of time before settling on a personal injury claim amount.
Generally, you should not be attempting to settle your matter until you are medically stable. It is not uncommon for insurance companies to draw out the process in the hopes that you give up completely – so it is essential to stay both persistent and patient! It is important to know your rights and options. With an experienced attorney, you can stay focused on healing and eventually receive the compensation that you deserve.
Filing a Claim is not Pointless
Yet another common myth surrounding slip-and-fall personal injuries is that your particular case doesn’t apply. Accidents are a common occurrence, but when you are injured on somebody else’s property due to their carelessness in creating a safe space, you may have a valid claim for a slip-and-fall accident if: the business was negligent, or, if they know or should have known that the harm could occur and/or it was foreseeable.
You may feel that your slip-and-fall injury is “no big deal” or that it was your fault for being clumsy or not paying attention, but the truth is that instances like this may also occur due to hazardous conditions beyond the victim’s control. Even if you believe that your specific slip-and-fall instance isn’t worth the time and effort to file a claim, you should always get in touch with a personal injury attorney near you to weigh your options.
So, what are you going to do in the event you slip-and-fall in a public space? First, understand that the above information does apply to you. Not only may your claim be worth it, but it is your legal right to pursue financial compensation for any injuries caused by the fault of another. Secondly, report the occurrence to the business so an incident report is completed to document what happened. Remember, even though you may have up to two years in the state of Arizona to do so before you have to file a lawsuit, it is always best to get the ball rolling sooner rather than later.
Are you ready to take legal action in regard to a personal injury?
Contact Jeff GOULD Law, the Attorney In YOUR Corner.
DISCLAIMER: The information on this blog/site is NOT, nor is it intended to be legal advice. It is for general informational use only. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. Further, this information does not create an attorney-client relationship.