Slip and fall accident cases are one of the most common types of personal injury lawsuits filed in the US. If you have suffered an injury in a slip and fall accident due to a company’s carelessness, then you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
To receive compensation for damages (such as medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering) you need to speak to our lawyers for slip and fall accidents.
Whether your accident occurred in a store, restaurant, tavern, or amusement facility, the law provides a remedy if your injury was due to the business owner’s negligence, maintenance, or management. Businesses operate to make money. The obligation that comes from that operation is to make the place safe for customers.
Below is a brief introduction to slip, trip, and fall cases in Illinois and what you should do if you were injured. Such cases are also referred to as “trip and fall”, “fall down” or “premises liability” claims.
What is a Slip and Fall Case?
Generally speaking, a slip and fall case arises from an injury that occurs due to the negligence of a business owner on their property. The injured person may file a lawsuit against the entity responsible for maintaining a safe business environment. However, it is important to note that the property owner is not always fully liable for all damages that occur.
Elements of a Case
In Illinois, you must prove that the fall was due to the negligence of the property owner. Negligence is a complex area of tort law and many nuances vary from state to state. In Illinois you must prove the following:
- The business owner owed you a duty of care to safely maintain their property
- The property owner failed to fulfill their duty of maintaining a safe business
- Due to the unsafe condition, you were injured
- You have suffered damages as a result of the unsafe condition
If you can prove all of these elements then you may be able to recover damages for your injury. However, many types of negligence rules may negate some or all of the property owner’s liability.
Contributory negligence states if you are more than 50% responsible for your fall then you are unable to recover anything from the property owner. If you were the one who created the spill, or you were acting in a reckless manner that caused your fall, you may not be able to receive compensation for your damages.
Comparative negligence applies when you were less than 50% responsible for your fall. Your compensation would be discounted by the percentage that was deemed your fault. For example, if you were found to be 15% responsible for your fall, you would receive 85% compensation for your injuries.
Joint and Several Liability
Illinois also has joint and several liability laws. This means our Chicago slip & fall attorney can file suit against every party responsible for your fall, no matter the percentage of fault each one shared.
What to Do if You are Injured in a Fall?
You can slip and be injured just about anywhere. Food or beverage on the floor of a restaurant can create a dangerous slipping hazard. Merchandise on the floor of stores can create a trip risk. The configuration of games or concessions in an amusement facility can create a danger to customers.
There are a few important steps that you need to take after you fall to improve the chances of you being compensated for your damages.
1. Get Medical Help
A fall can be devastating, especially to the very young or elderly. Make sure that you get medical attention right away. If you feel it is not an emergency, it is still important to be checked by a medical professional as soon as possible. Sometimes injuries are not immediately apparent and by the time you discover them, it may be too late to file a valid claim or lawsuit. Also, you may be accused of not being injured because you did not get prompt medical attention.
2. Report the Fall
Directly after the fall, report it to the landlord, or business owner, or if you are at work, follow your specific guidelines for reporting a work accident. Ask for a copy of the report. This report will be important information for your case and can be obtained and used by your Chicago slip & fall lawyer.
3. Take Photos
Take photos with your cell phone of the area where you fell. Make sure to document if there was anything on the floor that could have caused your fall.
4. Collect Information
Get the contact information of the property or business owner. Obtain names and contact information for any witnesses that were present when you fell. Keep this information in a safe location.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can you prove that it was a slip-and-fall accident?
The first step in proving that it was a slip-and-fall accident is to take pictures. This will show the location of the accident and any other evidence that might be on the ground. The second step is to collect any evidence from around the area. This could include things like broken glass or an oily spot on the floor. The third step is to make sure that you have all of your information together, such as your name, address, and phone number. The fourth step is to contact a Chicago slip & fall lawyer about your case.
What are the elements of a slip-and-fall case?
Slip and fall cases are usually caused by a wet or slippery surface. Injuries can range from minor to severe. Some common injuries include:
- Back pain
The plaintiff must prove that the premise owner was negligent in maintaining the property or had prior knowledge of the hazardous condition.
Where do slip and fall accidents occur?
Slip and fall accidents can be caused by several different reasons. One of the most common reasons is that the person slips on a wet or icy surface. Other causes of slip and fall accidents are tripping over something, or running into an object.
The most common place for people to slip and fall is in their own homes, followed by restaurants, grocery stores, and offices.
A study found that there are over 1 million slips and falls every year in the United States alone. This makes up about 10% of all injuries related to falls in America.
My slip and fall injury was on public property. Can I still sue?
Public property is considered to be owned by the government so it is not treated the same as private property. This means that if you were injured on public property, you may be able to sue, but the process might be different.
Nowadays, more and more people are suing for slip and fall injuries that happen on public property. These cases are usually filed under a different law called "premises liability." Premises liability law says that if someone is injured on private or public property, they can sue the owner or entity of the property if they feel the property owner was negligent. It is best to consult an attorney that specializes in premises liability law.
What type of damages can I recover from a slip and fall injury?
A slip and fall injury can be a very serious incident. It is important to take the necessary steps to recover damages from the accident. The most common type of damages that you can recover are medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Medical expenses are any costs associated with your injury. This includes doctor’s visits, hospital bills, medications, physical therapy sessions, etc. Lost wages are any wages that you may have lost due to your injury. There may be some times when you cannot work at all or you may not be able to work at 100% capacity while you recover.
What is a Negligence Slip and Fall Settlement?
A negligence slip and fall settlement is a type of personal injury lawsuit where someone sues another party because of injuries sustained due to the defendant’s negligent actions. Negligence slip and fall cases are typically filed against businesses that fail to maintain safe premises. These types of lawsuits often involve people slipping and falling while walking on floors, stairs, sidewalks, etc., and sustaining serious injuries.
The plaintiff must prove three things to win a negligence slip and fall case:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care;
- The defendant breached his/her duty of care; and
- Your damages resulted from the breach of duty.
If you believe you have been injured in a negligence slip and fall accident, contact our firm today. We offer free consultations.
Call a Chicago Slip and Fall Attorney
Contact us online, call or text (312)766-1000, or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) our attorneys for slip and fall accidents right away. Get a referral or recommendation from a trusted friend or colleague. The statute of limitations in Illinois allows you two years to file an injury claim. You must consult with an attorney shortly after your accident. The longer you wait, the more difficult it becomes to document, prove and strategize to allow you to collect your damages.
Each case has its particular facts and may deviate from the normal circumstances or rules. We offer no obligation-free consultations.
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