If you want to find out if you might have a valid case for pursuing a lawsuit due to a slip and fall accident in Virginia, you can start here. Almost everyone on the planet has slipped and fallen at some point. In the majority of cases, these incidents are believed to have happened because of a lack of paying attention of not being careful enough. Some people are naturally clumsy, so they slip and fall quite frequently. Occasionally, however, a person slips and falls because of some sort of hazard. If the accident occurs on another person’s property, the property owner might be held liable for the incident. However, it’s important to realize that the property owner isn’t automatically guilty is someone slips and becomes injured on their property.
There are situations where a commercial or private property owner could be proven negligent. If you fell and sustained injuries on another person’s property, you’ll find the information below to be very helpful because it will help you to determine if you might have a valid case.
Were Conditions On The Property Unsafe?
For the property owner to be considered liable for your injuries, he or she must’ve known about a hazardous condition on the property and chose to do nothing about it. You can’t just slip and fall on someone’s property and automatically file and win a personal injury case against them. There are plenty of examples of unsafe conditions:
• Sidewalk that is in exceptional disrepair
• Slippery or wet floors
• Lots of ice and snow on the property
If the property owner is going to be held liable for your injuries, they must’ve caused the hazardous conditions that caused you to slip and fall, or at the very least, they must’ve allowed the conditions to persist. It’s useful to know that property owners aren’t actually required to make sure their property is perfectly safe. They’re only required to make the property reasonably safe.
An example would be after a severe snow storm. Property owners are required to try to clear ice and snow from sidewalks on their property. These would be sidewalks that people are expected to walk on.Property owners aren’t required to make the sidewalks perfectly safe. In this example, a slip and fall that occurred immediately after a snow storm is likely to be denied.Find out more about proving fault for accidents that took place on defective or dangerous property by reviewing our online resource:
Was The Property Owner Notified?
The fact is that a property owner can’t be held liable for a hazardous condition that they knew nothing about. If they aren’t even aware of the issue, then they can’t do anything to try to fix it. Property owners must be given a reasonable amount of time to correct a hazardous condition after getting notified about it. An example would be a child dropping something wet inside of a store.
If a customer ends up slipping and falling on the spill almost immediately after the child spilled the liquid, the store would not be responsible because they weren’t given a reasonable amount of time to clean up the spill. One of the most difficult aspects to prove in a slip and fall case is notice.
If someone slips and falls on business property, it’s likely that the business will create an accident report. These reports can provide a lot of insight into an accident and how it might’ve occurred. They can also make it easier to determine how long the business owner knew about the hazardous conditions before the incident occurred. To learn more about these types of situations, read our informational blog article, Slip and Fall Accidents in Stores and Businesses.
What about Warning Signs?
When property owners become aware of a dangerous condition, they’re required to post a warning sign. The warning sign must be posted if the property owner cannot fix the issue immediately.
An example would be construction. During a construction project, the municipality is required to notify drivers and pedestrians of dangerous conditions. They can use ropes, signage or another means of notification. The owner of a store can use caution signs or similar.
What Responsibility Do You Have?
If dangerous conditions on a property were marked and obvious, the property owners aren’t usually responsible. An example would be a huge hole in the sidewalk, which is quite obvious. If it’s found that you had some responsibility in the cause of your injuries, it will impact your claim negatively. Proving Fault in Slip and Fall Accidents is best handled by an experienced legal professional.
Additional Legal Considerations
Before you decide to make a claim, you should always think hard and determine if your injuries are worth the effort. A sprained ankle or bruised knee might not be worth the effort. If you suffered an injured spine or broken leg, then it would make more sense to file a lawsuit. An experienced premises liability attorney can make sure you have a valid claim and help guide you through the process for best results. Don’t assess the situation on your own – consult a legal professional
Free Consultations Are Available!
Deciding to pursue a lawsuit is a big decision. The attorneys at The Brown Firm PLLC have decades of litigation experience and can help you understand your options before moving forward. Call our firm or send our attorneys a message online to set up a free consultation to discuss your case today.