What are Slip and Fall Injuries?
Slip and fall injuries are some of the most common personal injury accidents in the country. They can occur just about anywhere and to anyone. It does not take a major accident to lead to serious injuries. Even the most simple slip and fall could lead to tragic consequences. Many people injured in a slip and fall accident blame themselves, even if the injury was caused by someone else's negligence. Talk to your personal injury attorney today so you do not have to pay the price for another person's carelessness.
After a slip and fall injury, you may be faced with expensive medical bills, pain or lack of mobility, unable to work, or left with a permanent disability. If the injury occurred on someone else's property, business property, or government property, the property owner may be liable for injuries that occurred on property under their control. The property owner or their insurance company may not want to pay for the damages; however, if they are deemed to be liable, they may be responsible for covering your medical expenses and compensating you for your injuries.
Immediately after the injury, some property owners or their insurance company may try and get you to sign a quick settlement offer. However, it is important to understand the extent of your injuries and the potential liability of the property owner. They may be trying to get away with only paying a portion of your damages. Before you sign away your legal rights, talk to your attorney about whether the settlement offer will fully compensate you for your damages.
Slip and Falls in the Workplace
Falls are among the most common workplace injuries. According to OSHA, falls account for almost 40% of fatal construction site accidents. Many workplaces have a number of slip and fall hazards that workers have to avoid falling victim to every day. This includes slippery surfaces, torn carpet, holes in the floor, unprotected edges, cluttered workspaces, or unstable working surfaces.
Many of these workplace hazards go unrepaired. Employers may think it is too much trouble to repair these hazards, they may consider the repairs too expensive, or they may not prioritize worker safety. In some cases, workers who report the dangerous conditions may be ignored or even criticized for bringing up safety issues.
Often times in workplaces, multiple people may trip or slip on these dangerous conditions before someone is seriously injured. It does not take much to lead to a serious slip and fall injury. It could simply involve a bad landing, hitting their head or neck, or carrying items in their hands that leave them unable to protect themselves from the fall. It is up to the employer to maintain a safe workplace, and they should be held accountable for dangerous conditions.
Most workers injured in the workplace are eligible for workers' compensation after an accident. Workers' compensation claims allow an injured worker to receive medical treatment and wage benefits for the time they are unable to work. However, some employers or their insurance providers will deny a workers' compensation claim. They may deny the claim by blaming the accident on the worker or denying the injury is disabling.
If your employer has denied your workers' compensation claim, challenged the severity of your injury, or tries to blame you for the accident, you should talk to an experienced attorney. Your attorney can appeal your case, and fight to get you compensation for your injury.
Slip and Falls on Private Property
Slip and fall accidents are also common on public property, including a neighbor's house, grocery store, shopping center, or parking lot. Inside the property, slip and fall hazards may include a loose step on a stairway, torn carpet, loose floorboards, cluttered aisles, or wet surface. The property owner is generally responsible for maintaining their property and keeping it safe for guests and invitees. When a visitor is injured in a slip and fall accident, the property owner may be liable for their injuries.
At places like grocery stores, management is generally required to clean up slippery floors, wet floors, or other slip and fall hazards. As soon as the hazard is discovered, the problem should be remedied or the store should take measures to warn customers of the potential slippery area. However, if the store ignores the wet floor, or fails to put up a sign, if a customer slips and falls, injuring themselves, the company may be liable.
Property owners may also be liable for the areas surrounding their property. This may include uneven sidewalks, broken pavement, and in the winter, icy walkways or unsalted sidewalks. In some cases, it may be unclear who is responsible for maintaining the walkways, such as in shopping center. Your attorney will be able to include all parties who may be responsible in a personal injury complaint so you will not be foreclosed on recovering damages.
Slip and Falls on Government Property
Slip and fall accidents can occur on government property, which may be handled differently than when it occurs on other private property. This can include falling while riding the bus, tripping on the courthouse steps on the way to jury duty, or slipping on an icy patch in front of the fire station.
In most personal injury claims, the statute of limitations is two years. An injured victim has two years to file a legal claim against those responsible. However, the government has different time limits. The State of Illinois has notice requirements, which generally require filing a notice of the date, time, and location of the accident, a description of the incident, and other contact information. In many cases, the injured individual has one year to file a notice claim against the state.
If you suffered a slip and fall injury on government property, or if you are unsure if you may have a claim against the state, county, or local government, talk to your personal injury attorney. They will investigate your claim, identify potential defendants, and make sure your claim is filed in time. If you fail to file your claim against the government in time, your claim may be denied.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Slip and fall injury accidents can involve minor scrapes, cuts, and bruises, and may require not medical treatment. However, some falls can result in serious, even life-threatening injuries. Falls resulting in a traumatic brain injury can be the most serious. Brain injuries are difficult to diagnose and treat. The victim may feel fine, only to develop brain swelling or a blood clot. Any injury resulting in a blow to the head should be evaluated by a medical professional.
Illinois Slip and Fall Injury Attorneys
If you were injured in a slip and fall injury, you may be able to file a personal injury claim for compensation for your injuries. You should not have to deal with medical bills, lost wages, and permanent injury because of someone else's negligence. Our attorneys have successfully handled slip and fall injury lawsuits for clients in Peoria and throughout the State of Illinois. At Benassi & Benassi, we are committed to getting our clients and their families the justice they deserve.