- June 8, 2021
- Premises Accidents
It may be difficult to win a slip-and-fall accident case, but it can be done by showing that another party was negligent and caused the injuries you sustained.
Slip-and-fall accidents can cause major injuries and may even lead to death. If you or a family member was injured or someone has died as a result of a slip-and-fall accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses if you can prove that another party’s negligence was responsible for your injuries. Slip-and-fall cases are particularly hard to prove, because the defendant and their insurers will try to put the blame for the accident on you by saying you did something that led to the fall. Fortunately, a New York personal injury lawyer experienced with slip-and-fall cases can help you get the compensation you deserve.
The New York slip-and-fall lawyers at the Kaplan Law firm know that there are complicated laws that establish when another party is responsible for your damages following a slip or fall, and we are fully prepared to fight for the benefits you deserve. We offer a free consultation to examine the individual facts of your case and find the best way to proceed. There are no costs to you unless and until we win your case, so call Kaplan Lawyers PC at (516) 399-2364 today.
Can You Win a Slip-and-Fall Case?
You can win your slip-and-fall case by having our attorneys prove all the elements of a negligence claim.
For your slip-and-fall case to be valid, you must have fallen on someone else’s property and suffered an injury due to the negligence or fault of a responsible party, often the property owner or manager. There may also be several responsible parties, such as multiple owners and property managers or a company responsible for maintenance, and our lawyers would look to hold them all liable, as they all may have insurance and assets that could go toward a settlement.
Every property owner has a responsibility to maintain their property and remedy any hazards as soon as possible to avoid all serious injuries. To prove that another party is responsible for your injuries, you must show that they should have known about the dangerous condition, that they didn’t fix it, or that their carelessness caused the dangerous condition.
Legally, this means demonstrating the following elements:
- There was a dangerous condition on the party’s property.
- The party either knew or should have known about the dangerous condition.
- There was enough time to remedy the dangerous condition prior to your accident but this was not done.
- The party was negligent and failed to properly fix the defect which led to your accident.
- You suffered damages as a result.
At the same time, the responsible parties will try to prove that you were at fault for causing or contributing to the accident. Our attorneys can refute this and help you win your case by:
- Evaluating your case to determine who the at-fault parties were and what the case may be worth.
- Gathering evidence such as from surveillance cameras and photographs.
- Interviewing witnesses and first responders.
- Examining medical records and records of previous problems on the property.
- Filing your case properly and in a timely matter in court in accordance with New York requirements.
- Consulting expert witnesses to reconstruct what happened and to testify as to how your injuries negatively impact your life.
- Handling communications with insurance companies and lawyers and negotiating for a fair settlement.
- Building your case and representing you in court if necessary.
In slip-and-fall cases, your attorney will have to prove the defendant had either “actual knowledge” or “constructive knowledge” of the dangerous condition. Actual knowledge is when the property owner admits to knowing of the dangerous condition. Constructive knowledge can be established by showing that the property owner should have known about the dangerous condition prior to your accident. It is usually easier to prove prior knowledge of the dangerous condition if the problem existed for a long period of time.
Damages Our Slip-and-Fall Attorneys May Win for You
In a successful slip-and-fall liability claim, you may receive compensation for your economic and non-economic damages.
In New York you can win compensatory damages for both your “economic” and “noneconomic” damages.
Economic damages are for your specific costs, such as:
- Medical bills
- Lost income, past and future
- Property damage
Noneconomic damages are for your losses that do not have a specific dollar amount, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
In some rare cases, you may also be awarded punitive damages, intended to punish the defendant who harmed you as a way of deterring future people from behaving as they did.
Amounts of Awards if You Win a Slip-and-Fall Case
The amount that you may win in a successful case will depend on a variety of factors, including the severity and permanence of the injury, the degree of negligence of the defendant, the insurance coverage and assets available, and the skill and negotiating ability of your attorney.
New York does not have a damage cap for noneconomic damages, so settlement amounts can vary greatly, depending on the situation.
Contributory Negligence in Slip-and-Fall Cases
According to New York statute CVP 1411, there is a “pure comparative negligence rule” that determines how much you can recover if you did something to contribute to the accident. If you are found to be partially at fault for your slip or fall, what you can recover in compensation will be reduced by the percentage you are found to be at fault. As a result, the defendant will try to argue that you were at least partially to blame for your injuries to reduce your settlement, and our lawyers will have to show that the other party was mostly or totally at fault. That’s why it’s so important to make a strong case for you that shows the property owner’s liability.
Call Our Lawyers to Handle Your Slip-and-Fall Case
Slip-and-fall law is complicated, and proving liability is difficult, but the experienced New York personal injury lawyers at Kaplan Lawyers PC are fully prepared to fight for your rights and the settlement you deserve.
It’s important to call our attorneys as soon as possible, so we can get to work immediately while evidence is fresh and witnesses can be found. In addition, New York has a statute of limitations, a deadline for filing personal injury lawsuits. Under New York Civil Practice Laws & Rules section 214, anyone who was injured or suffered property damage in a slip and fall on someone else’s property must file their lawsuit within three years from the date of the incident. There are a few exceptions, but if you miss the deadline the courts are likely to dismiss your case.
Don’t delay. For help with a legal claim after a slip and fall accident, contact Kaplan Lawyers PC at (516) 399-2364 today for your free, no-obligation consultation.