With this type of injury, it is critically important to contact an attorney as soon as possible so that an immediate investigation can take place. It is easy for property owners to destroy evidence of their neglect that led to your accident and you don’t want that to happen! Rather than take responsibility for their actions, people will often engage in a cover-up to try and avoid legal liability for their negligence, so you should not delay.
Negligence is defined as the failure to exercise the care that a reasonable person would exercise under normal circumstances. It is usually negligence that causes a slip and fall or trip and fall. These terms are often used interchangeably and they are quite similar. Slip and falls occur when someone slips and then falls, just as the phrase implies. This can happen when water, ice or other slippery substances are left on a walking substance and causes an individual to lose their footing and fall.
By contrast, a trip and fall is usually attributed to holes in walking areas, uneven flooring, debris in walkways, stairs that have protrusions sticking up or structural defects that can cause someone to trip and then fall down causing injuries ranging from mild to severe. Either of these type of injuries falls under the umbrella of “negligence claims” and are considered “premises liability” cases.
In the state of Washington, property owners are required to take reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of individuals that are legally on their property or premises. When they are negligent and don’t tend to their property and the result is an accident, they are held legally liable under premises liability statutes.
Because business and property owners (and their insurance companies) will typically fight against a payout for this type of claim, you need the expertise of an experienced personal injury attorney that is familiar with this area of the law and has a track record of wins and significant settlements in this type of case.
Here are some steps you should take immediately falling a slip and fall to preserve your rights to compensation:
- Before you leave the scene of the accident, use your smart phone to take photos or video of the surrounding area and your position where you fell.
- Be sure to get shots of what caused your fall including water or other substance on the floor, broken stairs or whatever caused your accident.
- Snap pictures of your shoes, clothes and injuries either at the scene or the hospital, and be sure to do this both before and after your clothing is removed for treatment.
- Also document the weather, surrounding area and any additional factors that could shed light on what happened to you and who is responsible for your injuries.
- Gather phone numbers and names of any and all witnesses that are present at the scene. If your phone shoots video, you can film statements on the spot.
- If you are seriously injured, call an ambulance or proceed to the nearest emergency room for evaluation and assessment of your injuries.
- Carefully secure your clothing and shoes or other evidence that may be needed to document a particular substance that caused you to fall.
Contact Park Chenaur As Soon As Possible
As soon as possible after the accident, even while you are still recuperating from your injuries, call the personal injury attorneys at Park Chenaur and Associates for a free consultation and evaluation of your case. You can reach us at (253) 839-9440 (Federal Way) or (425) 405-7275 (Bellevue) or fill out our online appointment request form. The consultation is free and there will be no attorney fees or costs until we win you a settlement. No up-front out of pocket costs means there’s no reason to delay – call now!