Slip and Fall Accidents in NYC
If you’re injured in a slip and fall accident in NYC and are facing medical treatment and possibly loss of income if you can no longer work, a slip and fall injury lawyer can review your case to discover whether you may have been the victim of negligence. Reach out to our law firm for a free consultation about your slip and fall case at (516) 399-2364 or online.
Every single day, countless people in New York and throughout the country slip and fall down. On first thought, it might seem like a relatively harmless occurrence, and many people do fall without sustaining a serious injury. But it might surprise you to know that slips and falls result in some of the most devastating, and sometimes fatal, injuries. In fact, according to the National Safety Council, falls are the third-leading cause of accidental death nationwide. And each year millions of people suffer non-fatal injuries from falling; many end up in hospital emergency rooms.
While people slip and fall for a variety of reasons, including sometimes due to their own carelessness, falls often occur due to the fault, or negligence, of another person or entity. There are many dangerous conditions that cause people to slip and fall — conditions that the landowner, tenant or property manager may be held liable for as a matter of law. Our NYC slip and fall lawyers have the experience necessary to identify these hazards and confirm who is responsible for these dangerous property conditions.
Liability for Slip and Fall Accidents
Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere and at any time. They happen at commercial businesses, in workplaces, at schools, churches, in public spaces and in private homes. Basically, wherever people walk, a slip and fall accident can occur. Sometimes they are merely careless accidents, but other times they are due to someone else’s negligence. Who can be held liable for such an accident if someone is injured?
If it can be proven that a property was poorly maintained and there were known hazards that were not corrected, the individual, business or government entity that owns the property may be held liable. To prove liability, whether it is for an insurance claim or a legal suit brought through the court, it must be shown that the property owner acted negligently. This could mean that the property owner or employee, in the case of businesses, caused a hazardous condition by leaving something lying around in a walking path, and it could reasonably be foreseen that someone was likely to trip over the obstacle. In another example, there may have been an existing condition on the property that a reasonable person would see as a slipping or tripping hazard, and it wasn’t corrected, even though the property owner knew it was there. An example of an existing dangerous condition might be a pothole or other danger that could cause falls.
Proving negligence in a slip and fall case can be difficult. Property owners may say that the injured party caused the accident themselves by not watching where they were going or by being otherwise distracted. An experienced slip and fall attorney from Kaplan Lawyers PC at (516) 399-2364 can help you determine whether the owner of the property where your injury occurred may be liable and, if so, fight for your rights to fair compensation for your medical bills and other damages.
Why Slip and Fall Injuries Often Call For Legal Action
If you’ve suffered an injury in a slip and fall accident, then you already know how costly and painful these injuries can be. What you might not know is that you have the right to pursue compensation for your injuries if your slip, trip and fall accident and injuries were caused by unsafe property conditions. If the property owner’s insurance is balking at paying for your injuries, you might wish to take legal action.
A serious injury impacts our finances, careers and ability to do daily activities. You shouldn’t be forced to pay for these things, especially if a property owner or manager failed to keep their premises safe. A slip and fall case is considered a premises liability claim, in which a property’s owner is held accountable for the costs their property’s condition poses to others. In other words, the expenses you’re now facing in medical and other damages–and will continue to face–might be paid by a negligent property owner and/or their insurance company.
An injury claim can mean the difference between financial ruin and a manageable situation. A slip and fall claim obviously won’t heal your injuries or take away the pain you’re suffering. However, it can provide you with the compensation you need to get the medical care and assistance you require. A successful claim offers you the opportunity to avoid financial ruin and hold at-fault parties accountable for the harm you’ve suffered due to their negligence. It may also encourage the at-fault party to correct the problem on their property so that other people aren’t injured in the future.
If you’d like to explore your legal options and find out whether or not you may have a claim, call (516) 399-2364 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free, no-obligation legal consultation. A New York slip and fall injury lawyer at Kaplan Lawyers PC can help you get the payment and care you need, so that you can begin the process of rebuilding your life in the wake of a devastating injury.
How Much You Can Get For A Slip and Fall Injury
When you file a slip and fall premises liability claim, you are demanding payment for the many costs you’re facing. Some of these expenses stem from the monetary costs, but you can (and should) consider the non-financial impact of your injury, so you can include those expenses in your claim.
The expenses – or damages – you can demand in an injury claim include…
- Any and all medical expenses related to your slip and fall injury. This includes current and possible future costs for hospitalization, doctor visits, physical therapy, rehabilitation, tests, treatments, medical equipment and medications. It may also include things such as the cost of getting to and from medical appointments and parking fees at healthcare facilities.
- Lost income because of diminished work capacity or time missed at work. You might have missed work because of your injury, or you might find that your injury prevents you from working at the same level you did before suffering an injury. Both past and future lost income can be considered compensable damages in an injury claim.
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering. These damages are considered “non-economic,” though they often do have financial implications for sufferers. It is vital that you factor in the physical and emotional suffering you’ve experienced due to your accident in order to demand payment for the true costs of your injury. Pain and suffering damages can include loss of enjoyment of life because of chronic physical pain, emotional anxiety, humiliation, shock and other things. The amount you might receive for your pain and suffering is not as quantifiable as items like medical treatment or the hours you missed at work, which is where an experienced personal injury attorney can help advise you, based on the specifics of your case.
When considering how much you might get for your slip and fall injury, it’s also important to point out that New York is a comparative negligence state. What comparative negligence means in legal terms is that if you are found to be partially at fault for your slip and fall accident, the recovery for your injuries will be reduced by the percentage you’re found to be at fault.
For example, if it’s determined you were 20% at fault because you were looking up at the sky when you tripped over the tools a worker at the business you were visiting negligently left on the path leading to the building’s front door, your potential award will be reduced by that percentage. So assuming that the settlement amount is $10,000, your award would be reduced by $2,000 and you would receive $8,000.
However, it will be up to the property owner to prove that you contributed to your own accident.
The New York City slip and fall injury attorneys at Kaplan Lawyers PC know how to argue for your rights in slip and fall cases and can help determine the payment you’re owed. We make sure our clients get the respect, care and compensation they deserve. Contact us today at (516) 399-2364 to schedule your free consultation.
How a Slip & Fall Lawyer Can Help
When you work with our skilled slip and fall lawyers, you’ll be able to hand off the process of filing a claim to our team, so you can prioritize your health and recovery. We file all the necessary paperwork, correspond with insurance companies and attorneys, build your case and fight for the payment you deserve. We also consult expert witnesses, prepare presentations to strengthen your claim and look for every advantage in settlement negotiations and, if needed, trial proceedings.
Our team also knows that the day-to-day aspect of handling your claim is about more than building your case. We treat our clients like they are our family. If you can’t come to one of our offices, we will come to you. Our staff will answer any questions you may have, and will give you frequent updates about the progress of your slip and fall claim.
We use our connections to make sure our clients get the care and help they need to rebuild their lives after a serious personal injury. If you want to learn more about the many ways our team helps our clients, we encourage you to give us a call. We offer free consultations, so you can get to know us and get a free, no-obligation, initial case assessment.
Contact the New York slip and fall attorneys at Kaplan Lawyers PC by calling (516) 399-2364 or filling out our online contact form to get started with a free consultation.
Common Hazards That Lead to Slip and Fall Injuries
There are many signs that a property’s conditions lacked the proper oversight by an owner or manager. Though a slip and fall accident can occur in nearly any setting, there are a few common property conditions that seem to lead to premises liability claims.
These hazards include…
- Snow and ice on walkways or in parking lots. Business owners and other property owners in New York are well aware that snow and ice can cause people to slip and fall if it isn’t properly removed. The property owner, or the plow company or other contractor the property owner hired to remove the snow and ice, may have been lax in their duties. If such carelessness caused you to slip and fall, you may have a personal injury claim against the property owner, the plow company, or both.
- Spills and wet floors. Grocery stores, restaurants and other businesses have a duty to clean up unsafe conditions as quickly as possible and to alert customers right away about spills and wet floors by putting up warning signs or safety cones. Even if warning signs or cones are present, you may still have a slip and fall case if you slipped and fell on a wet floor. In some cases, the signs may not have been large enough or displayed clearly. An attorney can review all the facts of your accident to determine whether you may have a case even if “wet floor” warnings were present.
- Cluttered walkways. Workplace walkways that are cluttered by boxes, filing cabinets, extension cords, tools or other impediments can make walking hazardous. If you trip and fall at work or elsewhere due to a cluttered walkway and are injured, consider consulting with a slip and fall lawyer.
- Uneven and slippery floors. According to the Consumer Products Safety Commission, floors and flooring materials contribute to more than two million fall injuries annually.
- Worn and uneven steps. When steps are poorly maintained or step risers are uneven, tripping and falling is likely to occur, which can lead to serious injuries.
- Unanchored rugs. Many people keep throw rugs in their homes. If these rugs are unanchored, they can slide and cause people to slip and fall and sustain injury.
- Poor visibility. Burned out lightbulbs that haven’t been replaced, dim lights or no lights at all can make it hard to see and can lead to accidents. Business owners have an obligation to check that parking lots and other areas around their properties are adequately lit. Stairwells that are poorly lit can be especially dangerous.
- Lack of stair handrails or broken handrails. Building codes stipulate requirements related to handrails on stairs. If a building code calls for handrails on stairs and there are none, or if they are improperly installed or are not the correct height and you fall and are injured, the property owner may be held liable. Poorly maintained handrails that are loose or broken and result in someone’s being injured can also lead to lawsuits.
You might recognize some of the conditions above as the cause for your injury, or you might have experienced a slip or fall because of another hazard. Whatever the root cause of your injury, you are well within your rights to consider legal action if you believe it is a premises liability claim. Our New York City slip and fall lawyers can help you determine whether or not you have a potential claim. Call us at (516) 399-2364.
Slip and Fall Injuries in New York
Often people who fall are initially embarrassed and blame themselves; but, in the eyes of the law, a landowner is responsible for taking reasonable steps to keep their property free of slipping and tripping hazards and to ensure that there are no building-code violations. It is essential that you contact our slip and fall lawyers immediately so that we can investigate your fall before the owner can repair or alter the condition that caused your fall.
Why the Big Apple is Ripe for Slips and Falls
Falls can occur anywhere. They are especially common if someone is unfamiliar with their location, which means that the large numbers of visitors to New York might be at a particular risk for a slip and fall. Visitors to our city are constantly walking to popular tourist destinations like museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art, American Museum of Natural History and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Just like locals, tourists also frequent sports venues, such as Madison Square Garden, Yankee Stadium, Citi Field or the Barclays Center. It can be disorienting to visit a place for the first time; and if there is a slick floor, uneven surface or obstacle in the way, it’s easy to understand why a person might slip and fall on their trip to New York City. If you are a visitor to New York City who slipped and fell and was injured while simply trying to see the sights and enjoy a vacation, you might now know where to turn for help. The skilled attorneys at Kaplan Lawyers PC can help you understand your rights under New York law. Call us at (516) 399-2364 for a free initial consultation.
Slip and fall risks are present everywhere, from your local grocery store to your office’s parking lot. If you or your loved one suffers an injury from a fall, you deserve compensation if the conditions of the property don’t meet a reasonable safety standard. While there are many common causes of slip and fall accidents, most stem from a fundamental flaw of oversight by a property’s owner or supervisor.
Falling in Transportation Hubs
Tourists, locals and regular commuters to New York might also encounter dangerous conditions around subways, trains, airports or buses. Travelers might encounter hazardous conditions at notoriously dangerous stops like the 191st Street at the 1 Line, the Hoyt Schermerhorn on the A/C lines or Chamber Street at the J Line. Crowded, busy environments can lend themselves to slick and dirty floors, loose tiles or broken flooring. Think about how many people hustle through Grand Central Terminal and Pennsylvania Station every day. Or consider how many people fly out of LaGuardia Airport or the John F. Kennedy Airport.
Millions of people travel to and from New York City every single day. Is it any surprise that there will be plenty of conditions that can play host to slip and fall injuries in New York?
The Aftermath of a Slip and Fall
Falls can happen very quickly. One moment you are walking along toward your destination, and the next moment you are out of control and falling. In addition to the fear you will probably feel as you are slipping and falling, or tripping over something and falling, fall accidents can result in major personal injuries. These injuries may require extensive medical treatment and rehabilitative care, potentially for the long term depending upon the severity of your accident. The medical treatment you need may lead to large medical bills, and you may be unable to work while you recover.
Here are a few examples:
- Broken Bones – A broken bone is one of the most common and serious results of a fall. Falls can cause broken hips, ankles, wrists and arms. 95 percent of broken hips occur because of falls, and around 20 percent of falls lead to injuries like broken bones or head injuries.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) – Falls are the leading cause of traumatic brain injuries. Over 80 percent of TBI’s in people over the age of 65 are caused by falls.
- Spinal Cord Injuries (SCI) – One-fourth of all spinal cord injuries are caused by falls. Falls are the leading cause of SCI’s in people over 65.
- Other serious injuries from falls include soft tissue damage, ligament damage, pinched nerves, pulled or torn muscles and cuts and bruises.
The injuries that can occur as a result of a fall can range from minor to catastrophic, possibly even causing death. These injuries can become progressively worse with time, so even if your injuries do not initially appear to be significant, it is vital to seek medical attention so your complaints are documented and you can begin the recovery process.
Important Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident
If you are obviously and severely injured in a slip and fall accident, you will very likely be taken via ambulance to a hospital emergency room. If your injuries are not as immediately debilitating, you should still visit a doctor as soon as possible after your accident. In addition to being checked for injuries and having your injuries treated, a doctor’s report will be important evidence should you decide to bring a legal claim against the property owner.
It can also be to your benefit to create a record of what you remember happening while it is still fresh in your mind. Write down everything you remember about your fall, including what you observed the conditions to be that caused you to slip or trip and fall. It can be helpful to snap photos with your cell phone camera to visually record the conditions. For example, if you slipped and fell due to snow and ice, these conditions can change quickly when the weather changes. It’s important to capture the conditions that were present at the moment of your fall. The same goes for falls caused by puddles on floors, debris in walkways and other things that be quickly cleared up by the property owner who might seek to quickly remove the evidence of dangerous conditions on their property after your fall. Should you choose to bring a claim against the property owner, having a detailed record of what happened and the conditions present at the time can be valuable evidence to provide to your attorney. You should also report the accident to the property owner right away, especially if it was unwitnessed. That said, if there were witnesses to your accident, ask them to give you a written or recorded statement of what they saw.
The attorneys at Kaplan Lawyers PC in New York are experienced in handling slip and fall claims. Contact us online or by calling (516) 399-2364 for a complimentary consultation.
Filing a Claim After a Loved One is Killed in a Slip and Fall Accident
Sadly, people are killed in slip and fall accidents. If your loved one died in a slip and fall accident in New York due to the negligence of a property owner, the property owner may be held liable if a wrongful death claim is filed. The personal representative of the deceased can file a claim on behalf of surviving family members.
A family member cannot bring a claim unless he or she is also the personal representative administering the estate. The compensation that can be sought in a wrongful death claim depends on the specifics of the case, but may include medical bills, lost wages, funeral and burial expenses and other damages. The claim must be filed within two years of the person’s date of death.
Contact a New York wrongful death attorney at Kaplan Lawyers PC for more information.
Slip and Fall Lawyers NYC Answer FAQs
When you’ve been injured in a slip, trip and fall accident, you probably have a lot of questions. Following are some general answers to common questions that many people have when they fall on another’s property and are injured. Remember, however, that each and every case is different and has its own unique circumstances. A New York personal injury attorney who is experienced in handling slip and fall cases can more accurately advise you after learning the specifics surrounding your unique case.
Do I need an attorney to handle my claim?
No. However, the insurance company employs an army of attorneys, claims specialists, and experts to win the case, so in order to get the compensation that you are entitled to you will need to hire an attorney that specializes in this type of law. Our New York slip and fall lawyers have decade of experience and a proven track record of maximizing settlements and we are in the best position to guarantee that you get everything that you are entitled to.
How long do I have to bring a claim?
The statute of limitations (or time in which a claim must be brought from the date of the accident) is 3 years for a personal injury claim. If a claim is being brought for wrongful death the claim must be brought within 2 years from the date of death. If the claim is being brought against a municipality the time to bring a claim is significantly shorter depending on who the claim is against so you should consult with an attorney immediately.
Will I have to go to trial for my slip and fall case?
The answer to that question is that it depends upon the specifics of your case. While the majority of personal injury slip and fall cases are settled before they ever reach the trial phase, sometimes cases do end up going to court. Typically, a case will end up in court if the parties involved can’t reach a settlement agreement.
Do I have to pay any legal fees if I lose my case?
No. Our attorneys work on a contingency fee which states that if you don’t win your case we don’t get paid.
How much can you get for a slip and fall?
If any attorney tells you that they know how much your case is worth before reviewing all of the documentation then they are lying or incompetent. However, our legal team has decades of experience and will maximize the value of your case.
How long will it take to settle my case?
Every case is different but our legal team utilizes the most advanced technology and aggressive legal strategy to expedite our client’s cases, generally resolving cases years faster than any other firm.
How will my medical bills get paid?
Your medical bills will be submitted to the insurance company for the land owner under the Med-Pay provision of their policy. If your bills exceed the Med-Pay coverage or if the owner did not purchase med pay coverage, your medical bills will be paid by your private health insurance. If you do not have health insurance your medical bills will be submitted as an item of special damages as part of your claim against the liable party.
What do we have to prove to win the case?
We must prove that the owner either knew of the condition that caused you to fall, should have known of the condition, or created the condition. Typically, it requires significant discovery through litigation to learn the truth which is why you should contact the trip and fall attorneys at Kaplan Lawyers PC so that we can help you to prove your case.
Does it help if I have pictures of the location where I fell?
Yes. Very often pictures can prove to be the most significant evidence in proving the case so if you have photographs be careful to safeguard them.
Does it make a difference if someone else fell because of the same condition?
Yes. A prior incident can help to prove that the owner knew of the dangerous condition and failed to correct the problem.
Is it OK that I gave a statement at the time of the incident?
Yes. An incident report can serve as proof that the accident happened where you claim and how you claim it happened. However, we do not recommend giving any statements directly to the insurance company,
TOP 5 MISTAKES MADE AFTER A SLIP AND FALL ACCIDENT
If you’ve fallen on someone else’s property and been injured, taking the proper steps to document the incident can mean the difference between success and failure should you decide to make a claim. Here are the most common mistakes people make after a slip and fall accident:
- Failure to file an accident report. Insurers — and even a jury if your case goes to court — may question the validity of your claim if you wait too long to report your accident. File a report with the property owner as soon as possible, and be sure it is completely accurate as to how you remember the accident’s happening. Ask for a copy of the report. Filing quickly, no later than the following day, is especially important if your accident was unwitnessed.
- Failure to obtain pictures of the location of your fall. As stated previously on this page, the conditions that caused your slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall accident may change due to weather, because the property owner seeks to cover up the dangerous conditions that were present that caused your injuries, or for other reasons. Having dated, photo evidence of the conditions at the location where you fell are important as evidence. Take pictures from several angles. If you are immediately taken to the hospital or your injuries are otherwise too severe to allow you to take photos right away, consider asking a family member or friend to visit the accident site and take pictures.
- Refusal of medical attention. Injuries are not always obvious. Internal bleeding, soft tissue damage, organ damage and other hidden injuries you are not even aware of may be present. After a fall, get medical attention right away to help ensure your health and safety. A doctor’s report will also help prove that you did suffer injuries. Be sure that when you visit a medical provider after your fall, you clearly tell them how the accident occurred and that your injuries were the result of a fall. You want to be sure the doctor’s report reflects the same information included in your legal claim, should you decide to make one.
- Speaking directly with the insurance company. Insurance companies are in the business of making money and will often seek to protect their own financial interests, which means paying as little as possible on claims or rejecting claims altogether. Insurance company adjusters and lawyers are skilled in finding reasons for rejecting claims, including tripping people up who speak with them directly. It can be wise to have a slip and fall attorney who is experienced in dealing with insurance companies speak to the company. Also, if the insurance company contacts you to give a tape-recorded interview, understand that it is not a good idea and you are under no obligation to do so. Sometimes people are nervous or confused and may say something they don’t mean to say—if it is recorded, it may well be held against you later.
- Not hiring an experienced New York slip and fall attorney who will complete all filings to protect your rights and ensure that you will receive the compensation that you deserve. The claims process following a slip and fall injury can be complicated. An attorney who is experienced in handling slip and fall negligence cases will review all the details of your case, handle the complicated process of filing with insurance companies, and fight to get you fair compensation for your medical bills and other damages. Having a skilled New York slip and fall attorney handle your case can reduce the stress you are most likely feeling so that you can concentrate on recovery. Kaplan Lawyers PC can be reached at (516) 399-2364.
If you were injured through no fault of your own and because of the recklessness and carelessness of a property owner in New York, you have the right to file a legal claim against the property owner. Remember, you may face substantial medical bills now and potentially into the future. You may also have lost income because you can’t work due to your accident and consequent injuries. You deserve fair compensation for your injuries so you can focus on recovery and get back on the path to normalcy in your life.
Preventing Slip and Fall Accidents
We recognize it isn’t your fault if you’re injured in a slip and fall accident caused by a negligent property owner. However, there are some things you may be able to do to reduce the chances of being injured in a fall and, consequently, facing the pain from your injuries and possible financial distress from doctor bills and lost time at work. Here are some practical tips to help reduce the chances of slips, trips and falls for both yourself and others:
- Pay attention to where you are walking and what is ahead of you.
- Avoid distractions such as talking on the phone while walking.
- Use extra care when traversing cracked sidewalks, loose rocks and other uneven surfaces.
- Slow down when walking on icy, snowy or otherwise wet or slick surfaces.
- If you go out at night, consider carrying a small flashlight in your purse or pocket in case areas you are visiting are not well-lit.
- At work, notify your supervisor or another person in authority about possible tripping hazards that you see.
- If you notice a spill on the floor at a grocery store, restaurant or other place of business, notify the manager or an employee.
- Get rid of possible tripping dangers inside and outside of your own home, including loose rugs, clutter on floors, potholes in driveways and exposed tree roots, for example.
- Keep desk and file cabinet drawers closed when they aren’t being used.
- When walking around blind corners, make your turns wide so you can see what is ahead of you.
Unfortunately, not every fall can be prevented. If you or a loved one was injured in a slip and fall accident due to the negligence of a property owner, an experienced slip and fall attorney who understands New York’s personal injury laws can answer your questions.
Contact a New York Slip and Fall Lawyer
If you have been injured as a result of a fall, a New York slip and fall lawyer at Kaplan Lawyers PC can help ensure that you receive the medical care that you need and the compensation that you are entitled to. The consultation is free, and we do not charge a legal fee unless we win your case. Call us today at (516) 399-2364 or fill out our online form to schedule a case review.