Slip and fall accidents occur on a regular basis in Georgia and across the United States. Many of these accidents leave victims injured, some seriously. Most people never expect to be involved in a slip and fall accident, let alone injured in one. When the unexpected happens, victims need to know who may be held accountable in terms of potential compensation. It is also vital that victims understand what steps to take after a slip and fall accident takes place in order to build a solid personal injury case.
Common Injuries in Slip and Fall Accidents
Whether someone trips on a torn rug or carpet, slips on a wet floor, or falls on damaged steps or stairs, the injuries they suffer may range from minor to severe. Common injuries include:
- Hip fractures
- Sprained wrists or ankles
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord and back injuries
- Broken bones
- Neck and shoulder injuries
- Cuts and abrasions
- Soft tissue injuries
- Knee injuries (ligament tears, patella dislocation)
An experienced Atlanta slip & fall lawyer may be able to help determine whether a victim’s injuries are sufficient to build a strong claim for compensation of costs associated with their injuries. This may include medical costs, lost income, pain and suffering, and other expenses.
Steps to Take Following Slip and Fall Accidents in Georgia
When someone is injured in a slip and fall accident due to the negligence of a property owner in maintaining their property, it is vital to take action right away. The most important steps to take after a slip and fall accident include:
Seek Medical Attention Right Away
Whether a slip and fall accident victim believes there are injuries or not, it is important to be examined by a doctor as soon as possible. Many injuries are obvious, others may not be apparent right away. Documentation regarding injuries is essential for a strong personal injury claim.
Report the Accident
A report must be made with a property owner or business manager to document the slip and fall accident. Insurance companies may dispute a claim when no report is made, and reports must be in writing. Make certain the accident report is accurate and request a copy. Keep communication with the liable party to a minimum in order to avoid making comments that could potentially hurt your claim.
Take Photos of the Accident Scene
One of the most important steps to take after a slip and fall accident is documenting the scene. Photos are crucial evidence that can clearly show the conditions or damage that contributed to the accident. Property and business owners will try to correct the dangerous condition in order to limit their liability. Do not leave the accident scene without taking photos.
Witnesses are very important in slip and fall cases. Even if the witness did not see the slip and fall, the witness is important if he or she has knowledge about unsafe property condition before or immediately after the incident is very important to the case.
Obtain Contact Information
Victims who are injured in slip and fall accidents should get contact information from everyone involved, including witnesses that are present at the scene. Obtain contact information from the property owner or business manager as well as their insurance company. Witnesses who were present before the accident, at the time of the accident, and even after the accident occurred can make the difference in how a personal injury case turns out.
Keep a Case File
Victims can strengthen their claims by maintaining a case file that includes photos, medical bills, notes regarding what occurred that led up to the accident, communication with insurance companies, employer records documenting missed work due to injuries, and any other information relevant to the accident and expenses incurred because of it.
Avoid Commenting on Social Media Platforms
People often share the events of their lives via social media, however it is vital that slip and fall accident victims do not share what happened. Anything a victim says about the accident on social media can be to their detriment if it is used against them in court. The less someone says about the accident, the better. Victims can incriminate themselves without realizing it. HG.org discusses this more here.
Clothing, shoes, and other items a victim was wearing when a slip and fall accident took place can be helpful. Preserve the clothing that was worn in the state it was at the time (avoid laundering) and take photos of clothing, shoes, etc.
Consult with an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
One of the most important steps to take after a slip and fall accident is to schedule a consultation with a skilled personal injury lawyer who can provide legal guidance and help victims protect their rights. The experienced attorneys at Hall & Lampros help victims navigate what often seem like complicated issues, and work to seek the full compensation they may be entitled to from those who were negligent.