Many conditions can cause slips and falls, including pools of water on the floor, uneven flooring, or obstacles in walkways. Depending on the age and physical health of the person who slips and falls, injuries can range from minor cuts and scrapes to broken limbs and, in certain cases, death. The risk of injury from slipping and falling is especially serious for the elderly, as falls are the leading cause of death, injury, and hospital admissions among this population.
Slipping and falling can also be extremely costly. According to the 2017 Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index, the annual direct cost of disabling occupational injuries due to slips, trips, and falls was estimated to exceed $18 billion.
Who Is Liable for Slip and Fall Accidents?
While slipping and falling can be costly, you need not shoulder the financial burden of recovery alone if your accident was due to someone else’s negligence. All property and business owners owe visitors the duty to protect them from dangerous conditions, including those that could cause slip and fall accidents. A dangerous condition presents an unreasonable risk to a person on the property, and it must be a condition that the injured party would not have anticipated under the circumstances.
To establish that a property owner knew of a dangerous condition, it must be shown that:
- The owner created the condition or allowed the condition to occur
- The owner knew the condition existed and failed to correct it
- The condition existed for such a length of time that the owner should have discovered and corrected it before the slip and fall incident
To hold a property owner or possessor liable, it must have been foreseeable that his negligence would create danger.
How Much Can You Recover in a Slip and Fall Case?
The goal of awarding damages in a personal injury claim is to make plaintiffs whole—that is, to put them in the same position they would have been in had the accident not occurred. The damages a court will award in a personal injury action are known as compensatory damages. Some examples of compensatory damages in a slip and fall action include:
- Medical expenses
- Loss of earnings
- Loss of future earnings
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Disfigurement or disability
Because these damages are compensatory, the actual dollar amount you could receive in a slip and fall action depends upon how seriously you were injured in the fall—the more severe your injury, the higher your damages award.
Contact a St. Petersburg Slip and Fall Attorney for More Information
Recovery from slip and fall injuries can be extremely expensive. If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, you may recover some of this cost if you can show that the condition that caused your accident was the result of negligence. Contact the personal injury attorneys at Berkowitz & Myer for a free consultation by calling (727) 344-0123.