What to do after a slip and fall
"Slip and fall" injuries happen all the time.
Slip and fall injuries can happen both inside and outside a building. Common causes include bad lighting, ice, potholes, uneven floors, and spills. Our Columbia, MO law firm personnel are contacted about slip and fall incidents all the time.
Property owners have a responsibility to create a safe environment, but they are not required to guarantee your safety.
To have a winnable slip and fall case, your side must establish the presence of a dangerous or defective condition. Your side must also show that the property owner knew, or should have known, of the condition prior to your fall.
If you ever have a slip and fall, here are a few things to consider following the incident:
Take good records of what happened and specifically what caused you to slip and fall. In Missouri, to have a winnable case you must be able to describe what it is that the property owner did or did not do that caused you to fall and be injured. If you are unsure of why you fell, then your accident may be due to your shoes, your imbalance, your inattention, your physical or mental health, or any number of other reasons that have no connection to any fault by the property owner.
Try to get the names, addresses and phone numbers of anybody who witnessed the accident. This includes store employees. If you have a camera, take pictures of the area where you fell. Take close ups of holes and structural irregularities like boards sticking up from the floor, or water leaks that created a slippery area. If poor lighting was part of the situation, take pictures with AND without your flash. Write down and date your notes about the accident with details.
Take good records of what you wore and your condition
Your notes should include descriptions of the clothes, and especially the shoes, you were wearing. Future legal action will depend on this kind of detail. Preserve these items. So, if you broke a shoe heel in the fall, do not throw the shoes away. Keep them and don't use them further. If you were wearing your work boots, don't use them further. You don't want your shoes to undergo more wear and tear during any legal action over the next few months.
Also, take pictures and document your injuries. Bruises and cuts should be photographed and documented.
Contact the property owner
Make a report to the property owner about the fall. Tell the property owner what they did or did not do that caused your fall. Don't share your detailed notes and photos with them. Those materials are for your slip and fall attorney.
Take care of yourself
Get immediate medical attention for your injuries. Keep records and notes of your medical visits and symptoms. The more detailed they are, the more likely they will help you during any legal follow-up. Don't be proud and forget to mention some of your symptoms. The more documentation the better you will be prepared to handle a slip and fall lawsuit.
Make contact with a local personal injury "slip and fall" lawyer.
Successful cases are usually ones where the injured person has contacted an attorney very soon after the fall. Personal injury attorneys can help to give you advice on how to document your evidence and how to prepare for a slip and fall lawsuit. They also will be familiar with other symptoms that can occur with slip and fall accidents that may take time to surface, like some kinds of memory loss and other brain injuries. A lawyer will understand the legal time limits that affect your rights. A local Columbia, MO attorney can help to limit your expenses because of limited travel expenses. They will also understand the local legal system and courts.
Whatever your legal challenge, we will listen to your concerns and answer your questions about likely outcomes and consequences.
Contact Holder Susan Slusher, LLC today for a free consultation or case review. Mike Holder manages our personal injury area of the practice. While we are based in Columbia, MO, across the street from the Boone County Court House, we help clients in several parts of Missouri.
The information on this web page does not provide legal advice and does not create an attorney- client relationship. If you believe you need legal advice, please contact an attorney directly.