Were You Injured On Someone Else's Property? When You've Been Wronged, We Make It Right!

Slip and Fall Lawyer in Washington DC

Who Is Liable for a Slip & Fall Accident?

If you fell on someone else's property, you may be wondering who is liable for your damages. The responsible party will be determined by the specific facts of your case, but may include a homeowner, property owner, management company, business, or cleaning company. In some cases, parties responsible for specific duties of that property may be held liable. To determine who will be held responsible for your injury, contact our DC slip and fall attorneys.

Individuals who own and maintain public and private places have an obligation to take reasonable precautions against hazards that could cause injury. These places include, but are not limited to:

  • Stores
  • Homes
  • Restaurants
  • Hospitals
  • Government buildings
  • Office buildings
  • Nursing homes
  • Schools
  • Stadiums

When these facilities are not properly maintained, visitors can be vulnerable to serious accidents. In order to bring a successful premises liability claim, however, you will need to show that you had a rightful presence in the building or facility and that the responsible parties should have been aware of the hazard that caused your injury. If they knew about the hazard and failed to issue proper warnings or make efforts to have it repaired, they may be liable.

It is important for you to take action quickly after a slip and fall accident. Get in touch with Simeone & Miller, LLP today at (202) 888-0872 for a FREE consultation. 

What to Do After a Slip & Fall Accident

Slip-and-falls can be challenging cases to prove. Whenever you fall and injure yourself, you should be sure to do the following: (1) get the names, phone numbers, and addresses of any witnesses to the fall; (2) determine what you slipped on; (3) ask questions of witnesses or store employees to determine how long the dangerous condition was there; (4) find out if anyone on behalf of the store or owner of the property knew the dangerous condition was there before your fall; (4) report the incident to the store, including your injuries; and (5) get pictures of the what caused you to fall, if at all possible. Then, call Simeone & Miller, LLP before you contact the store or business again.

How to Prove Fault for a Slip & Fall Accident

Accidents can occur at any time and in any place, but some of them are avoidable and due to the fault of someone else. For slip and fall cases, there are some key elements that must be addressed to establish liability.

In order to establish a claim and hold another party responsible for your injury, you must prove the following factors:

  • The responsible party had a duty to protect you: First, you must establish that there was a duty on the part of the individual who owns, controls, or operates the property to ensure that it was properly maintained and safe. The manager and owner of a property are not always one and the same.
  • A dangerous condition existed on the property: Although it may seem obvious, it must be proven that a dangerous condition existed and that it was not simply a minor defect, such as normal wear and tear. It must also be proven that you were allowed on the premises and that they were used as intended.
  • The responsible party knew about the hazard: You will need to prove that the owner knew or should have known about the hazard that caused your injuries. Proving this element will often involve the testimony of experts who have an understanding of preventative procedures and standards. 
  • Your injuries are a direct result of the hazard: It must be proven that the injuries you sustained were a direct result of the dangerous conditions that existed on the defendant’s premises. In some cases, this can be a difficult element to prove since injuries do not always appear serious at first.

While some stores have video cameras, many times they play on a loop, meaning they record over the tape unless it is taken out of the camera. So, if the store is not made aware of the accident, the taping of the accident may be recorded over. This is one of the most important reasons to contact an attorney, so that we can take immediate action. Preserving video evidence of a slip and fall accident can be a deciding factor in winning a case.

What Is an "Open and Obvious" Danger?

One of the defenses in slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall cases is that the hazard was open and obvious and therefore could have been avoided by the injured person. This can be a valid defense in these cases, but there are many exceptions to this defense which may be available in your case. This is why you should contact a lawyer.

I Fell, But I Don't Know Why – Do I Have a Case?

Regardless of whether or not you know exactly what caused your slip and fall, you may still have a legitimate case. In some instances, a person suffers an injury due to premises defects that are not readily apparent.

Common defects that may not be apparent include:

  • Staircases without handrails
  • Staircases that do not meet building codes
  • Slippery flooring material

Our team has dealt with many cases where the injured person is unable to determine the cause of the accident. To help, engineers and human factor experts are called to answer any questions regarding the cause.

Should I Let the Store Manager Pay My Medical Bills?

Regardless of what a store manager may tell you, it is important to seek legal advice from a slip and fall lawyer immediately. In many cases, store managers will try to alleviate a customer’s stress by saying that the store will pay for their medical bills. However, once the bill is submitted for payment, the actual decision is made by another party, in most cases. Many stores and companies have insurance to cover premises liability accidents. In those instances, it is the insurance company that will ultimately decide whether to pay the victim’s medical bills or not.

Is There a Deadline for Filing a Lawsuit?

Yes. Each state, as well as the federal government, has their own limitations regarding deadlines for those who wish to file premises liability lawsuits. If you miss the deadline, your case may be dismissed, and you may be unable to recover compensation for your injury. However, if you contact a slip and fall injury lawyer immediately, you may be eligible for financial compensation to cover medical expenses, lost wages, emotion distresses and more.

Let Simeone & Miller, LLP Protect Your Rights

Simeone & Miller, LLP has an impressive track record of success in premises liability cases. Our legal team has accomplished these results by knowing the law, obtaining the necessary evidence, and aggressively pursuing our clients' claims. Battling well-funded property owners requires no less than the highest level of experience.

If you were injured as a result of negligence or carelessness, talk to a Washington DC slip and fall lawyer as soon as possible. There are several things you can do immediately, not only to protect your rights, but also to lay the evidentiary groundwork to help us review and evaluate your case. We can help you take the right steps.

Contact Simeone & Miller, LLP today at (202) 888-0872 to schedule a free case evaluation if you or someone you love has been hurt in a slip and fall.

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